Last week, WhatsApp announced a new feature which gives group chat admins the power to make themselves the only member that can send messages; a benefit that will no doubt be beneficial for those simply looking to communicate announcements or event updates.
For certain situations, sending one-way communication might be a possible solution. However, when it comes to truly best-in-class internal communication within a company, it's important to keep in mind that one-way traffic prevents the flow of energy that emerges when employee interaction takes place.
Employees want to be heard
Within the marketing field, one-way traffic has received negative associations for years now (unwanted spam, anyone?). Marketing professionals have recognised this, and we have seen a rise in brands focusing their efforts into campaigns that encourage two-way dialogue between themselves and their customers.
The same can - and should - be seen with top-down communication in organisations; leaders are much more open to direct dialogue with the whole workforce, and the traditional "corporate hierarchy" barriers are being broken down. We know that when employees feel heard, this leads to higher engagement, which ultimately leads to a better output.
Two-way conversation as a new standard
The rise of e-mail marketing in the 1990's saw spam messages to large groups of people marking the end of the one-way street. Customers wanted to be heard. This was the beginning of a marketing era where brands truly understood that their customers opinion mattered and should not be ignored.
In today's world, two-way conversations are the norm in business. The opinion of people is heard and people's needs are met. Traditional one-way traffic channels are becoming redundant in organisations - just think of the traditional intranet. That is where the development of the new WhatsApp feature doesn't align with what we see in modern business practices.
Listen to your employees
If you are looking for a solution where you can use the internal communication optimally in your organisation, it's important to always keep your employees best interests in mind. They are the ones who talk to your customers, (hopefully) put a smile on your customers faces and ensure that your customers return to your brand again. When employees feel involved with the business, they do their best to serve the organisation. And we can all agree that top-down communication from management just doesn't cut the mustard when it comes down to it.