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  • Writer's pictureAnton Tsuji

The silent fuck-up: You are doing strategy communication wrong

Updated: Dec 8, 2023

With our first blog post, we need to confront companies like yours with an ugly truth: You might have a strategy you think is gold. But really, even the best strategies are just empty words on a piece of paper if your people don’t see and feel it.


A loud speaker that annoys a crowd of people.



Did you ever catch snippets of chatter about your company's strategy around the office water cooler? Chances are, you've stumbled upon sentiments like:


“The strategy doesn't resonate with me, and overlooks important issues in our company.”
“I feel like I'm in the dark about what our strategy really is, and how my work fits into it.”
“No idea where we're heading; it’s hard to stay motivated when the bigger picture is so nebulous.”

Stings, doesn’t it? Yet, sentiment like this can even spiral into something worse. In the scenarios above, employees are at least vocalizing their concerns. Eventually, they stop caring about the company strategy altogether and retreat into silence.


The daily grind takes over. We don’t need to get into too much detail about the outcomes of a detached workforce; let's just say it bears an uncanny resemblance to our consulting business’s name…


The answer is SO obvious

Now, for some good news: It's not necessarily the case that your strategy is flawed. More often than not, there’s a solid framework in place capable of steering all employees.


The crux of the matter often lies in the lack of emphasis on effectively communicating the strategy.


Typically, management teams tend to prioritize the execution instead of making sure that the strategy is understood and embraced by the people, therefore relegating internal communication to a mere nuisance that needs to quickly get over with.


This is where things begin to get messy. Effective communication of your strategy is a cornerstone for its success.


The equation is simple: the more effort you invest in articulating the strategy effectively, the less time you'll spend micromanaging throughout the execution.


Clear enough, right?


You might now say, “Duh, I’ve already learned from my therapy sessions that communication is vital. Besides, I discuss the strategy with my team extensively.” And you wouldn't be wrong in saying that.


However, the problem remains – you might still be communicating ineffectively.



Your most important target group are your employees


Let’s pivot to modern marketing for a moment. We pour substantial resources into understanding our customers' needs, crafting the right messages, investing in compelling storytelling, and analysing the results to fine-tune our strategies.


Yet, when it comes to our employees, we often settle for a watered-down version of this approach.


Why the disparity? As a matter of fact, empowering your people is instrumental to the success of your organisation, right?


So why do we proceed without a clear understanding of their needs, and a well-crafted messaging framework while ignoring a modern and suitable channel mix to deliver the information, and, most importantly, without leveraging data to enhance our efforts?


So the inefficiency issue remains as companies apply their one-size-fits-none approach to communication.


Well, to address these issues, we believe that a paradigm shift is needed now. Conveniently, we have developed just that 🤓



Introducing Change Enablement Marketing


Heads up and listen, folks: We proudly introduce a new methodology designed to reshape how internal communication departments handle significant transitions, such as strategy, change and crisis communication, as well as more subtle shifts like introducing a new tool. We lovingly coin this approach Change Enablement Marketing (CEM).


CEM employs proven tools and techniques from contemporary marketing to cater to the most important target group of any organisation – its employees. The concept of CEM is especially useful for medium to large-scale organisations, where streamlining internal communication and driving employee engagement becomes increasingly complex.


With CEM, the era of generic intranet updates is over. Instead, it tailors internal communication to your employees by personalizing messages based on individual preferences, ensuring relevance and increased engagement.


CEM also provides a way to accurately measure the effectiveness of internal communication, offering clarity with data-driven strategies. This allows for genuine insights into the progress of respective one-off campaigns and recurring initiatives.


Last but not least, CEM uses agile methodologies and lean thinking, guaranteeing a consistent flow in your internal communications and focusing on the vital topics for your employees.






How clusterfck can help


Delving deeper, you might wonder about the concrete services we provide. Effective communication strategies require clarity and direction.


We provide a custom CEM playbook – a strategic guide that's adaptable and scalable globally. It mainly covers essential elements like:

  • smart communication goals

  • audience segmentation

  • channel mix strategies,

  • content blueprints

…, all of which are carefully crafted to amplify your internal communication. And while the playbook is chock-full of insights, we promise it's more beach read than epic literature.


However, any strategy, no matter how detailed, must be implemented effectively. Our strength lies in translating strategy into tangible actions. This means integrating the strategy into your daily operations, from goal-setting to editorial planning.


Importantly, we equip you with the right tools and processes not just to collect feedback, but to act on it, fostering deeper dialogues within your organisation.


Ultimately, we enable you to gather relevant data and monitor ongoing progress, so you can make informed decisions and justify your communication ROI.



Converse, don’t confuse

Recalling those water cooler conversations from the beginning?


With CEM, the tone and the situation are about to shift. Every employee gets the info they need, tailored to their preferences and optimised in a way that the information is actually understood.


And while we're employing a two-way route to communication instead of a one-way dead end, their feedback is incorporated, and the information remains relevant and engaging.


Instead of confusion, you'd find curiosity and collaboration. The outcome? People would actually want to start a conversation with you instead of complaining or staying silent.


Does this sound like something you would like to achieve? Let’s talk!





Some helpful FAQs


Why is effective communication of strategy crucial for organizational success? 🤫

Effective communication ensures that your strategy is not just a piece of paper but a guiding force for your employees. It aligns them with the organizational goals, fosters understanding, and minimizes the risk of a detached workforce.

I already communicate with my team about the strategy; why is that not enough? 🥺

What steps are involved in effectively communicating a strategy within an organization? 💬

What specific services does clusterfck offer to enhance internal strategy communication? 🚀


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Guest
Oct 17, 2023
Rated 5 out of 5 stars.

Maybe tune down the "fucks" at some point but I think your messages is very valid 👍

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Guest
Oct 16, 2023
Rated 5 out of 5 stars.

Awesome read. Great stuff you two!


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clusterfck's founders lara klinkenberg and anton tsuji
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