Monday Madness

workMonday, Monday…

I haven’t seen Jurassic World yet, but apparently a lot of running is done in high heels. On the Late Late Show with James Corden, Chris Pratt tries it out. Methinks he does it too well. LOL!

 

I personally enjoy this Lip Sync Battle between Anne Hathaway and Emily Blunt. Miley Cyrus vs. Janis Joplin. Just know – these two take this battle VERY seriously as you will see…let’s just say Anne takes it to a whole new level!

Rock your Monday!

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Monday Madness

workOh, my. It’s Monday!!!

For those of you new to my blog, on Mondays I like to provide you with something that makes you smile. This is because Mondays usually get a bad rap. You know what I mean.

And, guess what? I’d love for you to contribute your favorite funnies as well! Just email me!

Let’s get some giggle on with the following videos:

First, I present you with “Stock Photos in Real Life”. Two guys look around and see that their fellow employees are all in stock photo poses. Funny.

Does your dog share your couch? Or, actually, take over your couch? Watch this Great Dane’s expressions as he joins his owner on the couch!!

I love both James Taylor and Jimmy Fallon. So what could be better than “Two James Taylors On A Seesaw”?

Have a great Monday!

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Monday Madness

workI’m baaaaccckkk!!! Vacation in Florida was wonderful but now it’s back to the grind. Although, I love my work!

Since it’s Monday, it’s Monday Madness, and to “celebrate” being back from vacation, I give you kittens re-enacting the shower scene from the movie, “Psycho”.

Don’t forget, you can submit your favorite Monday Madness videos as well!

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Monday Madness

workIt’s Monday, but it’s also summer!!! My daughter’s last day of school was Friday, so I was enjoying it with her.

Even though school is out, the rest of us still have to work to pay the bills. But never fear, Monday Madness is here!

For those of you new to my blog, on Mondays I like to provide you with something that makes you smile. This is because Mondays usually get a bad rap. You know what I mean.

And, guess what? I’d love for you to contribute your favorite funnies as well! Just email me!

First up, someone decided to mash up the “Ducktales” theme song with Beyonce‘s “All The Single Ladies” video.

Great Danes being spoiled rotten. Dinky doesn’t like the fact that Romeo is getting loves instead of him. Wait until 1:40.

Finally, Ellen likes to scare her guests when they are on her show. Here are some of her favorite scares.

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Monday Madness

workHello, Monday. It’s that time again, eh?

Okay, folks! To put or keep a smile on your face during this first day of the work week, I bring you some funnies.

First up, I’m finally chiming in on “Deflategate”. Here’s the Saturday Night Live (SNL) skit.

Let’s stick with SNL. I think Will Ferrell is funny, that is all. I give you “Celebrity Jeopardy”! (You may want to view this with your ear buds in or on your personal computer due to some language.)

 

A Lot of Information In a Small Package

Infographics are a great way to get the attention of people who have no attention spans anymore.

By Steve Crescenzo

Infographics have been taking the corporate communication world by storm. As attention spans get smaller and smaller, communicators are struggling with how to present complex information in easy-to-digest formats. And a good infographic can often be the answer. Lori MacKenzie and her creative team of communicators and designers who work for the city of Aurora in Colorado, found this out when faced with the challenge of trying to communicate the city’s total compensation plan to employees. They wanted employees to understand that total compensation goes a lot further than just salary—and also show them how the city’s compensation plan compared with other organizations in the Aurora area.

To capture all that information and convey it an easy-to-understand format, she partnered with HR to get the data, and then graphic artists to come up with the design. Though it’s too early for any hard measurement numbers, she has gotten great anecdotal feedback from people who appreciated the information and the way it was presented. Low Hanging Fruit (LHF) asked Lori a few questions about the process, and the lessons she learned.

Employee-compensation-poster-674x1024LHF:  What was the creative process like? Did you provide an outside agency with the data, and they came up with the infographic? Or did you do it in-house?

LM: Everything was done in house from start to finish—including printing. Our communications team met initially with human resources to get the data and then we worked with our graphic artists to brainstorm and come up with the creative design.

LHF: Do you have any measurement numbers on whether or not it worked? Even anecdotal evidence? What kind of feedback did you get?

LM: We don’t have hard numbers, but we did receive feedback. Employees definitely read the information and found the format to be eye-catching. A few employees who are unhappy about the fact that raises have been minimal for many years didn’t like the fact that we were pointing out the total value of their compensation package, but at least we know they read it.

LHF: Why did you do it? How did you know there was a need for this information?

LM: As I mentioned, salary increases have been fairly slim (or non-existent) for many years. However, at the same time, the city has continued to absorb increased costs for our health care benefits. We are also fortunate to have paid vacation time and sick leave, and a solid defined benefit retirement plan. There was a need to help employees truly understand the entire value of their compensation package, and not just their salary.

LHF:  Why the infographic approach, instead of the standard article/poster/brochure? And where did this appear? How did people see it?

LM: We had some success with a report to the public we produced earlier in the year as an infographic. We thought it was important to do something like that for our employees that cut through the clutter of standard internal memos and handouts. We printed posters that were hung in all employee break rooms at all of our facilities throughout the city. We also posted the piece on our employee intranet.

The post “A Lot of Information In a Small Package” appeared first in the Low Hanging Fruit newsletter.

stevecAbout Steve Crescenzo: Through his work as a consultant, writer and seminar leader, Steve Crescenzo has helped thousands of communicators improve both their print and electronic communication efforts.

How To Build A Successful Intranet Site

4913477075_12178628141677313153AJ_Buddy_frightenedsvghi_xlargeHave you ever been asked to update an intranet site for a business? I mean, one that was horribly out of date, not user-friendly or even business-focused?

If you haven’t, but are a communicator, you may one day be asked to do so.

How would you go about it? Do you know?

I can share what I did with one site (I’ve managed a few of these projects in my time).

When this one oil & gas intranet site went live, the team I worked with did expect a few more requests for edits to come our way (as that always happens), but we were pleasantly surprised at the “Kudos” e-mails we received. (Usually it’s more like “no news is good news”.)

I’d like to say we were all fabulously clairvoyant and knew exactly what to do to make the site a success, but the reality is that we made sure we didn’t operate in a vacuum.

What We Did 

From the start, we included the business employees in the project. We interviewed employees in each business unit, confirmed information with the leaders, and made sure we connected with those located in different countries.

Including employees across the globe helps ensure you don’t accidentally do something wrong or offensive to other cultures.

We asked them the following:

  • How did they currently use the site?
  • How did they want to use the site?

Why did we ask those two questions? This site was about them. If employees did not find it user-friendly and containing the information they wanted and needed (in addition to required information), they weren’t going to use it.

ProfilewireframeAs we put together the wireframes (a wireframe is a visual guide that represents the skeletal framework of a website) and built out the site, we continued to engage employees and team leaders by holding conference calls or sending them previews. This was to ensure we all stayed on the same page (no pun intended), and we got as much correct/approved information right from the beginning.

It’s Alive!

So, as the site went live, it was, for all intent and purposes, correct!! It was well thought out, many dead and duplicate pages had been deleted (savings right there!) and employees liked the fact that the most used tools and links were up front.

In addition, the site was set up to help achieve the goal of explaining and defining what the business as a whole does and how it benefits the company. Key business and branding messages for all employees to know and use!

The Key Factor

I’m going to repeat what I wrote earlier in this post: From the start, we included the business employees in the project. We interviewed employees in each business unit, confirmed information with the leaders, and made sure we connected with those located in different countries.

THAT was the key factor. If you don’t include employees and business contacts in the development of the intranet site, you won’t succeed in giving anyone what they need to run the business, stay up on company news, and find information to help them help themselves.

Conclusion

Include employees. Don’t let them control the project, but listen to their input – they know what the need to make sure the business succeeds.

Ensure you have a good web design team that is up-to-date on web trends, especially when it comes to mobile-friendly sites, for example.

Developing or updating any website can be a fun, successful project. Needless to say that in this case, we stacked the odds in our favor, and it paid off – including employees is key to achieving your communication objectives.

Wireframe image by “Profilewireframe” by http://www.flickr.com/people/doos/http://www.flickr.com/photos/doos/3931846833/. Licensed under CC BY 2.0 via Wikimedia Commons – http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Profilewireframe.png#/media/File:Profilewireframe.pn

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