- Communication is very important to maintain good relationships with stakeholders.
We have previously talked about the importance of communicating with employees in a distributed workplace. However, it is important to talk to communicate with other employees too.
Stakeholders are the backbone of every organization, encompassing all investors, partners, employees, and more. With this in mind, it is essential that you communicate effectively with all stakeholders, whether you are based in the same country or dotted around the globe – and here are 7 ways you can improve such communications.
1. Send out regular e-newsletters
E-newsletters are a fantastic way to communicate with stakeholders, eliminating the need to physically post out printed newsletters that could take days or even weeks to arrive.
You can send e-newsletters as weekly briefings, monthly updates, or annual summaries, to keep stakeholders informed at all times. It is also quite simple to automate the distribution of e-newsletters to your mailing list.
2. Schedule virtual meetings, conference calls, and events
With international stakeholders, it’s almost impossible to arrange for everyone to be in the same room at the same time – the travel costs alone could be exorbitant. Instead, look to video calling software to host your meetings, conferences, and events virtually.
3. Unify your communications
The key thing to remember about international stakeholders is that they will likely be based in a different time zone. This means that some communications might get missed or lost. To reduce the risk of this happening, consider unified communications.
Unified communications combine all communication methods into one place, so everything can be accounted for. Solutions such as the Horizon hosted business phone system are cloud based, which means they can be operated on any device that has internet, and thus can also help you to provide 24hr worldwide stakeholder support, allowing seamless collaboration between teams even when one is awake and the other is asleep.
4. Consider the format of the content being dispersed
Instead of an email that could take ages to read, could the information be condensed into an infographic? This will make communications much more efficient, allowing stakeholders to be kept in the loop without taking up too much of their time.
5. Tailor communication to fit interests
It’s important to consider stakeholders as individuals, especially when you consider the added differences of being spread around the globe. The best way to mitigate this is to tailor communications to what each stakeholder’s business interests are.
For instance, team members in one country won’t need to know the same information as investors in another, so only give out the information that you need to the appropriate people.
6. Ask for feedback (and listen to it)
The best way to understand what the most effective means of communication might be is to ask the international stakeholders themselves – after all, who knows better what suits their needs better than themselves? In fact, feedback is one of the most important things to focus on when measuring company performance.
Not only will this give you useful insights that can help you improve the effectiveness of your communications, but it will also show stakeholders that you value their opinion, boosting trust and loyalty in your brand.
7. Remember to set time aside for Q&As
Following on from the above, make sure to give stakeholders the time and platform to ask you questions, too. This will ensure that your communications are working both ways, and allow stakeholders to have an input on all the necessary points of interest.
And there you have it – 7 ways to communicate with international stakeholders more effectively.