Creating and Maintaining a Great In-House Magazine

In the Internet era, information can easily be created, edited and shared across a wide audience with just a press of a button. With globalization and increased competition, organizations that remain stagnant and not adapt to new technology and use creative way to communicate will find themselves out of business not because of the lack of strategies but because of the lack of communication capability. A good example is the wide use of latest social media such as Facebook and Twitter to communicate and keep in touch with each other. For an effective organization to move forward, everyone from the CEO to the office boy needs to gain access to relevant information fast and at the right time and cost. Any delay or misinterpretation of such information can be disastrous, confusing, and costly and translate into lost of business opportunities.

For a CEO to be effective, he can no longer rely on the traditional methods of communication either via the use of internal circular, memo or his management team.

In this modern era, people welcome different approach in communication especially one that is rich in multi-media and not just another ad-hoc top down email that are basically knee jerk reactions. Every issue needs a different approach and treatment. No unsavory words or terms should be used even when management has to communicate a harsh message across. Those entrusted with authority should show some patience and decorum when communicating. The moral of the story is communication must be handled with care and need greater empathy and professionalism for the communication to be successful. It is not just about using technology and saving paper but a profession, which makes or breaks news, which also makes or breaks an organization.

One of the more common communication tools is the use of e-magazine that is easy to create and deploy. This is by far the most cost effective and reliable method to share information especially with internal staff. Information can be quickly posted via intranet at almost no cost and reach all staff immediately. Company that is serious about this should setup up an in-house editorial and publishing team that job includes conducting research, compiling materials and putting up the blog for the magazine.

For an in-house magazine to be effective, it must have the following characteristics: –

• A creative design and layout

• An interesting dynamic contents

• Must appear as the default page of every sign-in

• Easy access with no undue restrictions imposed

• A fixed frequency for update (preferably once a month at least)

• An interactive sections for employees to provide inputs

• Use a lot of pictures and video to illustrate your key messages/events.

• No discrimination in the selection of features/articles to publish

• Make it personal by featuring actual interviews with staff or capturing of staff event.

• Incorporate jokes, quiz or riddles to make your magazine interesting and fun.

• Incorporate a system where feedback can be rewarding to encourage feedback from readers.