Here’s an issue we often see in medium-sized and large companies. Individual people are all working on their own initiatives, pushing on toward their personal OKRs. They may collaborate in small teams and, every once in a while, talk about their work in bigger quarterly meetings. But they often have no idea -- seriously, none at all -- what people in other departments are doing.
Why? Easy answer: They’re focused on their own jobs, not the result of their creations.
And while it’s certainly important (critical, really) that employees center their attention on their own work, it also means that many staffers are missing out on knowledge that could really boost their sense of workplace pride.
It doesn’t take an in-depth survey to know that people want to feel good about where they work. Nobody wants to feel embarrassed about their jobs. But oftentimes, because they’re so laser-focused on their personal tasks, employees have little insights into what the company as a whole is producing.
On the production floor at Angiodynamics, a medical device manufacturer, there’s a lot happening at one time. People are assigned to all sorts of separate tasks, and those jobs might be stage one of a five- or ten-stage process. They typically don’t see the final product -- they’re working on their stage, and that’s it.
With that in mind, the company’s manufacturing manager and IT lead decided to use digital signage to show their employees what they’re really doing on a day-to-day basis.
“We put a video up there of how it helps patients, and what the device actually does,” they explained. “It motivates them to work faster because they know if we’re behind on schedule, that’s a person.”
He added, “What they do in the plant -- they might be doing something with a tube, minuscule, but at the end of the day, it’s going into a person’s body and helping that individual. We want to put those stories in front of folks because … [it makes them] want to be here.”
The Angiodynamics team is even working on creating content that showcases their own employees who have a personal connection to the medical devices. Customers aren’t always strangers -- in fact, they’re often friends and family. Pretty powerful stuff. And even if your company isn’t literally saving lives, it is making an impact. Maybe your business helps people organize their closets, manage their money, market their business.
These are all important services and products, and they are making a difference in people’s lives. Your employees want to know their long hours are going toward something that matters, and digital signage can help you show them just that. Check out the Business Impact Workshop with Angiodynamics for the whole story.
“Authenticity” is one of those tricky words in corporate America. The purpose of a business is to generate profit, which means that all decisions and strategies intend to serve that mission. For a long time, that felt contradictory to the concept of authenticity -- the idea that yes, we’re trying to sell a service or product, but we genuinely believe in the core truths of what we’re doing.
It’s a particularly resonant challenge for advertising firms like David & Goliath, which has to promote not only its own authenticity, but also that of the brands it represents. The firm’s CEO David Angelo, sat down with us and Matt Emerzian to discuss his nonprofit, Every Monday Matters. EMM focuses on helping people understand who they are, why they matter and what they can do to better themselves and the world on a daily basis.
David Angelo’s corporate model was built upon being brave, going up against your fears and being true to yourself, so when he found Matt’s organization he loved how the message intertwined with his own. Building a foundation of authenticity “starts with a firm belief in who the brand is and what they stand for, whether it’s a person, organization, company, bar of soap, social movement -- once you have that truth of who you are, you create a blueprint,” David said.
Incorporating EMM into company programming and internal communications has proven groundbreaking for the firm from top to bottom, encouraging genuine personal empowerment on an individual level.
The programming is expertly deployed through digital signage, effectively reaching people throughout each and every day. But giving the team the space to make those changes was a largely unorthodox move. Most businesses remain rigidly attached to its existing job positions, so bringing Matt’s team into the fold was a bit of a unique decision.
In essence, the EMM team has carved out its own department: It’s not technically human resources, and it’s also not squarely corporate comms. By allowing Every Monday Matters the freedom to develop, instead of constraining the conversation to “Well, this is how we do things,” the team has been able to revolutionize certain aspects of the firm.
Just as importantly, it’s inspired leadership to look at themselves more closely and ask themselves what the company really stands for and how their own role serves that larger purpose. A brand vision “has to be led by C-suite who believe in living an authentic life,” David said. “Boil it all the way down, if our goal is to help serve the brand, it shouldn’t be to control the brand. It’s to help the brand live its truth.”
Authenticity can’t be faked; it has to start from within. Employees who feel valued and inspired put that positive energy into creating a business that others find valuable and inspiring. Clients and customers are intuitive -- they can sense when a company believes in its vision. When you make real internal changes to promote that vision, you’ll start to truly see those results unfold.