Communicating With Employees About Coronavirus

As coverage of coronavirus continues to dominate the news, we’ve been speaking with many of our clients about strategies for communicating with employees about the potential impacts. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention offers a number of useful resources for businesses and employers and several industry groups are coordinating the sharing of information.

Communicating with your employees during times like this is critical. We wanted to highlight a few of our recommendations and best practices based on our ongoing GSG Employee Communications research:

Communicate proactively with your employees. As with any time of potential crisis, employees should hear from their employer proactively about steps that are being taken. For coronavirus, that means letting employees know what steps you’re taking to prepare and sharing useful information and resources from the CDC and state and local health agencies.

Communicate from the leadership team. Our research shows that employees want to hear more from leadership – and employees who hear from leadership regularly are 2x more likely to trust their employer a great deal.

Leverage multiple channels to reach all employees. Communications preferences of employees vary greatly based on demographics and factors like where they work or what kind of work they do. The top two communications channels favored by every audience we looked at were email and in-person communication. However, the best additional channels vary by audience.

We are committed to being an ongoing resource to our clients and colleagues as you navigate your communications with your employees. Please don’t hesitate to contact us if we can be helpful to your organization.