In my role at STRATACACHE as VP and subject matter expert for corporate communications, I get to interact with communicators from all over the world in different industries. Employee communications is everywhere and that’s a beautiful thing, but that’s also a challenge. I get to hear about frustrations and successes and I get to share the wins and losses I’ve had over my career.
A few years back, I thought about launching a podcast dedicated to internal communications content. I’m not one to start and stop something. If I’m going to do it, I’m going to see it through. All the way. It took a while for thought to turn into action but it’s happened with the launch of ICology.
The definition of “ecology” is the relationship between living things and their surroundings. This echoes true in internal communications and became the basis for my podcast series ICology. In the IC world, the “living things” are employees – and their surroundings include channels, culture and structures. The energized focus in internal communications on channels and technology is great. But it’s not enough. We need to focus more on the people involved, including communicators.
Internal communicators tend to live and breathe a key part of their job title. . . internal. And while this is a key component of their jobs, it can limit their network size and reach into new content and ideas. Internal communicators often fail at reaching beyond their own organization for new strategies and ideas. In addition, I see very few practitioners taking advantage of social media for their own personal use, which is a loss for them. There is a wealth of information available every single day on Twitter, LinkedIn and other social channels.
So why ICology? Why a podcast? Well for the reason I just described. I know that a communicator’s time is precious. I know that they can’t keep an eye on Twitter and LinkedIn for new content and ideas like I can. Or maybe they just don’t have the interest. Budgets are limited and attending conferences can be costly. A podcast lends itself well to the mobile lifestyle enjoyed by professionals today.
I have had focused and engaging conversations with professionals who are dedicating their time and energy into improving the access, reach and impact that internal communications can have. And frankly, should have. The lessons learned will be valuable to communicators at any level of companies at any size.
I am not a professional podcaster but am having so much fun creating ICology and seeing where it goes. The podcast is available on iTunes and Podbean (for those who aren’t fans of iTunes). Subscribe so that you can download past episodes and ensure that you don’t miss an upcoming edition. I’m also sharing Podcast updates and other internal comms tidbits on Twitter at @learnICology. If you hear of great stories and guests who would fit well with ICology, please share them with me.