This past month has posed a challenge to all industries, and PR and marketing are no exception.
We’ve been asked by our clients, more now than ever, to support them in areas outside of traditional PR, including both internal and external communication strategies. Our clients range in size and focus, from small B2B start-ups to large healthcare enterprises, so our strategy and counsel varies based on their needs.
As PR strategies shift in relation to the news cycle, it’s critical that we continue to find ways to add value to the businesses that are relying on us. From navigating the media landscape and supporting crisis plans to advising on social media best practices and even creating a remote work checklist – unpredictable times means unpredictable needs.
In the midst of the chaos COVID-19 has caused, one area that may have been overlooked – but shouldn’t be! – is company culture. As we’re offering guidance to clients on best practices for internal communications to their staff, it’s important to keep in mind that culture continuity is just as essential as business continuity.
Extending Your Company Culture Beyond the Office Walls
At PAN Communications, we’re lucky to have a strong company culture that is felt across offices and by those working remote. As an employee who spent four years in the Boston office and then moved and worked remotely for a year, I can speak to this firsthand. Company culture isn’t just the in-office happy hours or group fitness outings. Company culture can thrive no matter where your staff is located, and it’s more important than ever to make sure that culture is felt while we’re all social distancing from one another for the foreseeable future.
Next time your client comes to you asking for support on a communications plan or help on messaging, consider going a step further to offer insights on ways to keep company culture alive during the COVID-19 crisis. It might be a value-add your client doesn’t even know is missing, and a great way to connect their culture with their brand’s core values.
Here are some of the top ways your company can maintain a thriving and inclusive culture during this time.
Tips for Improving Company Culture During COVID-19
- Create an all-company Spotify playlist for people to add songs to from home – like ours!
- Schedule virtual coffee breaks, stretching sessions, and happy hours
- Build Google docs for recipe shares and tips while cooking at home
- Send around easy at-home exercise guides or links to video workouts
- Weekly contest for the weirdest WAH interaction from a parent, sibling, significant other, or pet
- Other silly contests – judged by consensus – like who has the best home Wi-Fi name
- CEO/company leader to send a morning email with all that is good going on in the world – we all need some positivity right now!
- Once a week, schedule a company-wide video call to get a pulse check across teams, departments and to stay fully transparent on next steps as company (plus, it’s good to see everyone’s faces!)
- Create a dedicated Teams/Slack channel to share your work-from-home space or anything funny that happened to you at home
- Share ideas for fun activities to do at home to make the most of being indoors!
- Virtual pet playdates – everyone’s dogs get to meet each other for a quick hello (and an adorable photo)
- Share quarantine movie list/Netflix recommendations
- Puzzle competition – everyone buys a 500-piece puzzle and sends an update on where they are daily (and maybe a prize for the winner?)
- Share information with colleagues about how to support local charities
- Instead of an office-catered lunch, company can send food deliveries to employees’ homes and eat lunch together over Zoom
- Send food delivery gift cards to customers
- Walk-and-Talks – for calls that you don’t need a computer for, take them outside while on a walk
Do you have any suggestions we’re missing? Send them to us on Twitter @PANcomm!