Feedback from our team members is essential in our journey to be a high trust and high performing firm. We learned in our Great Place to Work survey that our people desired greater transparency regarding firm changes and expectations, a deeper connection with firm leaders, and explanations on how our priorities as a firm relate to them on a personal level. As we listened to our collective DHG voice and thought about the best, most effective way to address these desires, we developed our new two-way communication methodology to build deeper connections with our people. By now, all of our valuable team members have had at least two Two-Way Communications meetings during the last two months.
What is the Two-Way Communication Methodology?
Each DHG team member is assigned to a designated communicator. The communicator is given the tools and resources to successfully communicate the topic at hand before meeting with their team members in a small group. This approach provides a face-to-face, personal platform for Q&A, discussion, and feedback in a close-knit setting.
For our people, this process informs them about what we are doing at DHG, how it affects them personally and how it aligns with our firm strategy. It also ensures that everyone across our footprint is hearing the same message, whether they are an associate or a partner.
For the communicators, it gives them insight into what our people are thinking and it helps build their communication skills. All of our partners, principals and directors at DHG must have strong communication skills in order to be successful. Perhaps even more essential in the communication equation, we must also be good listeners. One of our core values is relationships, both with our people and with our clients, and through listening and communication we can build on that core value every day.
Why is Feedback Essential?
We are not just communicating out, but more importantly, we are also communicating in. Through two-way communication, the feedback comes directly from our people, and we are able to quickly digest the information and put plans into motion. After our first two-way communication, our firm leaders immediately asked, “What are our people thinking?” “How can we use this feedback to enhance their experience?” We were able to identify trends, address issues and provide clarification through listening. Having that immediate feedback is a wonderful asset.
What Will We Achieve?
Our communicators “make the weather,” as we say. Our team members look to them to know what is important and how they can contribute to our firm goals and commitments. Through this intentional conversation and dialogue, we look to improve the engagement of our people through shared understanding and connection to our DHG strategy. We truly believe in listening to and empowering our people, and if we recognize what is important to them, we will be better equipped to help them reach their career goals and better serve our clients.
Our vision for evolving into the Firm of the Future includes a significant focus on being Change Agile. As we embrace change and seek to carry it out efficiently and smoothly, we understand that an effective communications strategy plays a central role in strengthening our “change muscle.” Two-Way Communication is a vital tool we will use to ensure all elements of change are clearly explained to our teams.
Finally, as a firm, our Two Way Communication only further enhances our aim to always think ONE DHG. Having consistent communications, face-to-face, seeking feedback, all in the course of a few days, will only work to further solidify our team and our common purpose. I look forward to hearing from each of our team members, through our Two Way Communications and during visits to our market, in the coming year.