Change is never an easy task. And adapting a company’s culture can be a very cumbersome undertaking. That said, there are some great advantages for organizations willing to pursue a cultural transformation, as they seek to become more adaptive and innovative.
As the workplace evolves, more and more businesses are now shifting their company culture to fully embracing video for communication. They are doing so, to more effectively and effectively share knowledge and information, replacing more traditional, written communications.
Are you ready to begin the process of challenging the status quo within your organization, and help drive a cultural change that will drive efficiencies, as well as better business outcomes?
Do you want to learn how you can help your entire business to pivot and fully adopt the use of well structured, snack-sizes videos as a daily communication tool for sharing any business narrative?
In this page, we'll teach you everything you need to know to get started. Happy learning!
We are all becoming more and more comfortable with communicating through video. Everyone has something to share, stories to tell, and valuable information to offer our colleagues.
However, video storytelling in itself isn’t enough. It’s when it’s structured that video storytelling is the most effective, consistent, and impactful.
You don’t need a company full of Stephen Colbert levels of comfort in front of the camera – in fact, no company does. But that doesn’t mean your employees can’t be powerful storytellers in their own right. Just read about our “Complete Guide to Enterprise Knowledge Sharing” to see what we mean.
Structure is the component that can help to guide your employees on what to talk about, how to talk about it, and you can ensure that you have consistency in the way people are communicating. You can help to develop the narrative of the topics, the goals – but it’s their story that is getting told!
Structure also helps to build the formula to make sure that what people are talking about is relevant, timeline, and aligned with your goals. This can allow you to drive focus, to keep to your company standards, keep information about your organization that you want to consistently incorporate into any of the communications, and provide a path for people to successfully share their perspective and knowledge.
This can be achieved by using things like storyboards, guided prompts, a cohesive strategy, and a consistent format that makes it easier for the audience to consume. In the same way that Excel and PowerPoint have structure, videos are way more effective when organized.
Building this formula is much like writing and publishing a book – You provide chapters, and leverage your staff to provide unique content and perspective while you’re still insuring the relevance based on the business narrative you want to have delivered.
So whatever business outcome organizations are looking to achieve, structure provides the focus to execute against that business outcome in a consistent and well-thought-out way that makes it easy for those narrating, while maintaining value to viewers.
You may be reading this and thinking, “my company has a wonderful culture and we don’t need a transformation,” or, “Sounds great, but I know it will be challenging to get my employees to buy into the use of video. While both of those things may be true, you have to realize two things:
If you’re fortunate enough to work for an organization with a positive culture and strong operational identity, that’s great! Now, you can take that culture and take it to the next level by also integrating structured video storytelling which will further create a sustainable competitive advantage.
On top of that, the COVID-19 crisis changed companies around the world in a rapid and permanent way. If you want to adapt to the new reality of creating both a strong culture AND financial success as a remote operation, then structured video storytelling is absolutely one of the best tools you can have.
There are many red flags that indicate that an organization’s culture has problems that need to be addressed. These include high turnover rates, people moving jobs frequently across different departments, and negative attitudes, to name a few.
Unless you’re very lucky, you’ve probably worked somewhere with a bad culture in which employees are not engaging with each other, aren’t excited to be at work, and there’s a revolving door of people coming and going regularly.
You may even read these signs and think that they reflect the culture at your current workplace. If it does, that’s okay. The important thing is to look at this challenge as an opportunity to help repair it!
One of the first things that you’ll need to do to shift your organizational culture is to shift the mindset of the people within that organization. If people, especially leadership, aren’t open to new ideas and concepts, then nothing is going to change.
We hear things all the time like, “Our culture is nowhere near where it needs to be so this sounds impossible,” or, “We’re not advanced enough to take on something so modern, like video communication.”
If you want to find a way to bridge the five generations that are in the workplace right now, the best way to do that is through communication. It’s the best and only way to solve cultural challenges.
For example, the COVID-19 pandemic showed very rapidly which organizations were prepared to communicate internally through a crisis and which weren’t. If there were silos and teams were not already collaborating within a system that encouraged it, then overcoming the pandemic was much more challenging.
So the COVID-19 crisis did not create bad cultures… it simply exposed some.
The leadership team should enforce and encourage changes, but a manager is not in charge of culture. This is a difficult idea for many companies to reconcile and it goes back to the idea that the first change has to happen in mindset.
First, you need clarity of what you're trying to achieve and how every person inside of the organization lends and can participate in that vision. Then you need to clearly communicate to all employees that their voices matter and experiences not only matter but are absolutely crucial to defining your shared organizational culture.
If employees don’t believe this and take ownership of it, they’re never going to buy in and engage with a cultural shift. They're not going to be authentic.
So change your mindset, get your employees engaged, and live your culture every day. People will take notice and start to own it – and that’s how organizational shift happens.
The way organizations view their culture has changed dramatically compared to 30, 20, even 10 years ago. These days, good companies are recognizing the importance of peer-to-peer communication instead of top-down. It may seem obvious now, but this was a huge shift in mindset that’s opening up all kinds of exciting opportunities.
Whether you realize it or not, most of your company’s communications are probably top-down. Even ask yourself something as simple as this: Who runs your meetings? Is it your VPs, directors, and managers? That’s top-down!
Creating a culture of knowledge sharing is becoming one of the most effective ways for organizations to get a competitive advantage and attract and retain stellar employees.
This is something that everyone wishes would be very easy – but it’s not. It can be complex and sometimes unnatural, especially for organizations like banks, insurance companies, and other institutions that have been around for a very long time. However, it can even be tricky for newer or smaller companies. So, you’re going to want to leverage knowledge sharing tools that can help you along the way.
Of course, video is a great way to empower your employees with a platform that’s easy to use, easy to understand, and puts forth content in a way that people love to consume. One reason that video is so powerful is that nonverbal communication can be just as powerful, if not more so, than verbal communication. Video tells you way more when you can see the face of the individual, their expressions, and body language.
Let’s face it, you’re already super busy and don’t have time to tackle new projects on top of everything else for which you’re responsible.
You’re not alone. This is a problem many people have: they don’t have time for knowledge sharing. Hardly anyone puts knowledge sharing into their business plan or on the agenda for a goal-setting meeting.
Part of that is because there’s a mindset that it’s “just another thing” to be responsible for that’s going to have limited ROI and take up a ton of time.
Even if you are part of a team who find the value of knowledge sharing, there’s likely an understanding that this is something you do after your “real job,” meaning that it’s at or near the bottom of the priority list.
That’s what makes the idea of a cultural shift so important. Make it part of your schedule, a recurring event in which you set aside time every week to prioritize knowledge sharing. An hour or two every week can do wonders for your business and creating a culture of knowledge sharing. Once it’s part of your schedule, it’ll become part of your job and eventually feel like second nature.
Creating an engaging, collaborative, and productive work environment is no small task. That challenge gets elevated when your employees are all working remotely and they aren’t able to build the camaraderie that comes when people are working in the same space.
One key element of creating an effective remote work environment is to maintain their sense of belonging to both the team they’re on and the broader organization as a whole. You can achieve this through regular 1-1 meetings, team rituals, corporate remote events, and more – but the universal theme at work here is that communication is key. Communicating the company’s culture, values, strategy, and results are essential to create that sense of belonging.
Another important element is to maintain everyone’s individual energy and engagement level – which is going to be different for everyone. Let them get into a rhythm so that they know what’s expected of them, reward them for individual successes, and provide recurring mutual feedback so that they understand your perspective and can communicate their own.
And finally, ensure that information flows everywhere that it should.
Sounds obvious, right? However, this is actually one of the trickier challenges, especially when it comes to operating as a remote organization. It’s important here to leverage the tools and software that make this process easy and straightforward. Regular check-ins, video communication tools, structured storytelling – all of these things will ensure that communication is not only flowing but is put forward in an effective and meaningful way.
With everyone having such varied and distinct needs and learning styles, how can you meet the needs of individual employees who are working remotely?
It’s a question that many managers and organizations are struggling with. As a manager, it’s your job to listen to and analyze each individual situation individually, especially when remote work is a constraint within which you’re operating.
Be gracious to each situation. Some employees will struggle with their physical environment at home, whether they have children, space limitations, or unsatisfactory equipment. Others may struggle with organizing their work without the structure and rhythm of working in the office. It can be challenging to concentrate in the presence of so many possible distractions at home.
You may even have some employees who will have low morale because they’re not able to see the rest of the team. Many people find it hard to work in coordination with their colleagues when they’re not in the same room.
So, have these discussions early and often and be upfront about it. Define what success looks like for each employee and build a plan to help them achieve it. With regular feedback sessions, you’ll be able to check in and see how they’re doing while also providing feedback on their performance.
So there are many things that affect a remote work environment, but remember that as long as you’re being open and honest, keeping lines of communication open, and listening to what your employees have to say, your organization will thrive.
Your company’s DNA comes from everyone in the organization, regardless of their role, experience level, and responsibilities. So, if your company culture is driven primarily by the leadership team and top-level executives, then you’re missing amazing opportunities to use employee-generated content.
Employees want to be part of that conversation, and what better way to give them the tools they need to freely express their knowledge, thoughts, expertise, and emotions than with a video storytelling platform?
We’ve all seen those tacky corporate culture videos that seem more like an ad than they do something meaningful. Almost always, those videos involve the marketing department, maybe hiring a PR team, HR cherry picks specific individuals, and they’re highly scripted. The end result is a well-constructed, carefully worded, visually appealing advertisement.
That’s not how great company cultures are created and promoted.
Authenticity is one of the most important ingredients in creating video content that resonates with people, and it’s almost missing entirely in the example above.
However, when you give your employees the platform to create and share their own video content, your going to see their authenticity, creativity, and honesty shine. Use a structured video storytelling framework instead of a script – and then empower your employees to do the rest.
Once you’ve given your employees a voice and a platform on which to share it, amazing things start to happen. They’ll start to become more invested in their role and do their job more effectively – and now that those doors are open, any silos that may have existed within the organization start to come down.
Employee generated content will help build and nurture a culture where people encourage each other, embrace each other, and look for more ways to work together as a team. It will build a symbiotic relationship amongst everybody in the organization, and that level of alignment will help you achieve your business goals like never before.
When you think of the words, “positive work environment,” what comes to mind?
To us, a positive work environment comes from putting people first in everything you do. This is a universal concept that transcends industry, company size, number of employees, etc. If you have a people-first culture, then you’ll create a positive work environment that fosters collaboration and communication.
Culture is directly tied to communication - if it occurs often and is done well, a company’s culture will be strong. A culture that places the highest priorities on their people and communication will encourage and empower employees and push a consistent focus on learning, growing, and acceptance.
With communication comes collaboration. Teams and departments within the organization will start working better together and take ownership of processes instead of relying on a manager for all guidance and direction. That level of collaboration celebrates multiple points of view and a diverse perspective, which makes people feel heard and valued.
The words “culture” and “work environment” often get used interchangeably, but they are in fact different.
Culture is something that every person brings with them into an organization, but the work environment is people’s day-to-day experience resonating from that culture. In essence, a work environment is a byproduct of culture. So if you have a strong culture, then your work environment will be strong as well.
Oftentimes we hear people say, “We have a great culture, but a bad work environment.” There’s a disconnect there, right? Because one stems from the other, and more often than not the work environment issues actually stem from cultural issues.
One of the most impactful ways to create an amazing work environment, if you’re willing to think a little “outside of the box,” is to create fun, creative, silly videos that humanize your leadership team.
Many times, especially in an enterprise organization, leaders are five or six steps away from an employee. So an employee might not ever have met that leader before. And when they get emails from them or they see them presenting at a conference once a year, that's not necessarily a personal connection that they may have with them.
Being able to humanize the leader and have them do something fun and/or silly, like performing a skit or competing in some kind of theme may go a long way with your employees.
On top of that, take every opportunity to showcase employees, recognize achievements, and empower them to share their knowledge with other members of the team. It’s a tried and true way to create a culture of collaboration, communication, and ultimately success.
One of the things that people struggle with when trying to create any kind of content is the concept of the “white blank page.” How do you take nothing and turn it into something?
Because people sometimes don’t know where or how to begin, they don’t begin at all.
That’s why structured storytelling is such an impactful way of helping people create meaningful content, especially in an enterprise organization. Structure provides the roadmap for what types of content to create, when and where to share it, and how to make it resonate with your peers.
Structured storytelling will also provide prompts to help overcome those roadblocks and help your team deliver important, authentic, and amazing content that drives your business forward.
Have you ever bought a piece of furniture from Ikea? Can you imagine trying to put it together without following the step-by-step instructions?
Structured storytelling works the same way. When you see all of the components laid out on your living room floor and a picture of the finished product on the box, it’s daunting to imagine how you get from A to B without instructions.
With a roadmap, anyone on your team can create compelling stories and demolish any barrier that stands in the way of employee communication.
When you put people first in everything you do, you and your team will start to create amazing connections with one another. There’s a symbiotic relationship between communication and human relationships because they both continually build upon the other.
An honest, authentic video from a team member to their peers elicits emotion and empathy from the audience. In fact, it triggers oxytocin, the “feel-good” hormone.
It’s an incredibly powerful thing because it boosts our feelings of things like trust, compassion, and cooperation. And, it motivates us to work with others and positively influences our social behavior.
Remember this the next time that you or someone else on the leadership team has to share important news to the organization:
People remember stories more than facts.
Stories are much more relatable and act as mnemonic devices for important information. If you’ve got an important message to convey, don’t spew a list of facts and expect people to remember it.
Instead, tell a story that contextualizes the information and makes it relatable to your audience. It’s okay to be vulnerable. People respond to that.
Yes, data can persuade people. But it doesn’t inspire them to act. A good story can!
Implicit knowledge, especially in business context, is knowledge that’s gained or passed on without awareness that knowledge is being shared. And believe it or not, it consists of about 80% of any company’s knowledge!
Explicit knowledge covers things like how your product works, what it does, why it exists, and the problems that it solves for your customers. It may also include the way that your organization is structured or the names of your employees – anything that can be easily explained with words.
Implicit knowledge, on the other hand, usually consists of more complex topics that have layers and can’t be explained with a simple answer. When you talk about marketplace trends, you can’t explain it with a word or two, right? You need to have multiple conversations with a lot of people in order to truly understand it.
The reality is that implicit knowledge is hard to capture because it’s everywhere and often unspoken. A company’s culture is a great example of that – you can try to sum it up in a few words, but culture is a complex thing and it’s better understood by those within it than trying to explain with words.
Your company is full of implicit knowledge, and the bigger your company is the more knowledge it has – and the more complicated it is when you try to share all of that knowledge.
Think about all of the knowledge and expertise your team has that’s totally implicit: how to improve sales cycles, how to de-escalate a customer who’s upset, how to run effective meetings, how to write an awesome blog post. These are all learned skills that come with experience, but they’re probably not shared formally or outlined anywhere in a written way that others can consume.
That is a huge portion of the value your company has at its disposal that’s completely implicit – and until you capture that from all of your employees and share it, it can only help your business in a very limited way.
However, this is no easy task. This knowledge is very hard to capture because much of it is part of people’s personal experience and they may not even realize they have it.
How do you teach someone to hit a baseball?
You can bring them to a classroom and tell them about the basics of batting stance, bat grip, watching the pitcher’s release point, shifting your weight – all of those things.
However, until the person is actually at the plate taking swings, they’re not going to really learn. Theory only takes them so far – they need practical application.
The best way to share knowledge across your organization is through a robust knowledge-sharing process that elicits creativity, community, and communication.
When you start to turn your employee’s implicit knowledge into information that’s shared with the rest of your organization, it can do incredible things for your business.
That’s why storytelling is so powerful. Don’t share your implicit knowledge through a slide presentation or a long, dense email. Empower your employees to share their stories, because that’s what resonates with people. When you share stories through structured storytelling, it will have a positive, lasting impact on your culture, your bottom line, and the success of your business.
When you hear the words “digital transformation,” what comes to mind?
To us, there’s a revolution happening when it comes to communication, access to information, and the way data is shared. Whether it’s an internal knowledge-sharing strategy, researching a competitor, or analyzing the market for your product, sharing information digitally has never been easier, faster, or more important.
When it comes to sharing information at the enterprise level, one of the most important things you need to consider in this digital transformation is the mitigation of risk. Yes, you want to empower your employees and give them the freedom to share and access information quickly and efficiently.
However, you also need to establish consistency which means there needs to be structure. If you can find the balance of giving your employees the ability to share information while also providing direction and guidelines, you’ll be far more successful.
While data management and text communication isn’t going away anytime soon, it’s absolutely critical that you incorporate video into your communication strategy. Video captures emotion, collaboration, and implicit knowledge in a way that no other medium does.
As we outlined in our blog post, Why Structured Video Storytelling is Good for Your Remote Work Environment, only 30% of information transmitted is verbal or written – the rest is understood through facial expressions, body language, and other visual cues.
To take it a step further, let’s break down both words: digital and transformation.
When we say digital, we’re talking about the computer age, right? We use technology to do business more efficiently, explore new markets, and grow our business. In fact, it’s almost impossible to think about operating your business without digital technology!
Let’s focus more on the word transformation. What we’re doing is challenging the status quo to improve what you're doing and using some sort of technology to drive that forward. According to Forbes, 70% of companies either have a digital transformation strategy in place or are working on one.
Take Johannes Gutenberg, for example. Before he invented the printing press, it took forever to write books and only a few people had access to do it. The process was cumbersome, clunky, handwritten, and took forever. Once the printing press was done, he had to really sell the premise of the printing press, not the book. Once he did, you could mass-produce books.
You can do the same thing with video by removing all of the most common barriers to video content creation and allowing people to put their own spin on it. All you need is the right tool to help you transform your business.
To get a message across to your audience, whether it’s your employees or customers, you need to repeat it many times. It sometimes takes many touchpoints to get a message across, especially if it’s in text form, like an email or text message. However, video resonates with people in a way that no other medium does.
On top of that, younger generations rely on video more than anyone else. Whether it’s an asynchronous video or a live feed, young adults use video every single day. If you want to be a business that attracts and retains young talent, the time to start your digital transformation is now!