Video Intranet Tip: Personify Your Intranet


In brief: Create an emotional connection to your brand by personifying your intranet.


Personalizing your intranet is critical for adoption. When ACCA created their intranet, they personified their company’s first president, Arthur Priddle. Arthur has a profile in the employee directory and sends out company news. Hear from Sarah Moffatt, ACCA’s Internal Communication Channel Manager, about some key benefits associated with having a deeply-integrated intranet brand.

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How To Find And Utilize Your Organization’s Hidden Leaders


When we think of leaders, we often think of strong Type-A personalities that can motivate change and lead with a commanding presence. What is overlooked however, is the behind the scene players that are often taking on valuable leadership responsibilities without the spotlight or recognition. While many organizations look for these strong type-A’s to fill their management and executive roles, they’re ignoring how other personalities are contributing to the growth and success of an organization. After all, it’s these hidden leaders that are a driving force for accomplishments at the front lines of your business.

Last year, Scott K. Edinger and Laurie Sain published a book entitled The Hidden Leader, which speaks to this concept of spotting leaders within your organization beyond the traditional executive team. They list four key traits in a leader: demonstrating integrity, leading through relationships, focusing on results and remaining customer focused. In a collaboration heavy organization such as ours, we find the ability to lead through relationships to be critical — it’s one of the first traits we look at whether hiring externally or promoting from within. This trait allows the hidden leader to build trust with a strong base of people that are on board with their ideas and are willing to help.

When looking at your own organization, there are three key steps that will help you find, support and recognize these hidden leaders.


Looking beyond the more obvious traits of a ‘leader’ will be the first stepping-stone to harnessing these hidden leaders.

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Video Intranet Tip: Help Staff Overcome their Fear of Contributing


In brief: Education is the key to helping employees feel confident about contributing to the intranet.


Reluctance to contribute is often due to a lack of knowledge on how to be part of the intranet community. Hear from Vanessa Millar, Intranet Community Manager, how MD Financial Management helped employees overcome their stage fright of contributing to the intranet.


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Video Intranet Tip: Align Your Company’s Internal and External Brand


In brief: ACCA refreshed their intranet to align their internal and external communications to ensure employees were working towards a unified goal.


When the Association of Charted Certified Accountants (ACCA) introduced their Strategy to 2020, a major component of their new vision was a refresh of their brand. In order to align their internal and external communications, they took it upon themselves to also refresh their intranet. For any strategy to be successful, it needs to be clearly communicated to employees—those key players who will be delivering on the strategy. Hear from Sarah Moffatt, ACCA’s Internal Communications Channel Manager, how ACCA refreshed their intranet to ensure everyone was working towards one mission and vision.


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How to Conduct an Intranet Strategy Workshop (With Free Template)

Intranet Strategy Workshop

We often think of the metaphor of navigation when it comes to strategy. We get out our map and compass, we have a fixed sense of where we are going, and we just need to cement that into the minds of our team in order to get there. However, Gordon Ross, VP of Strategy at ThoughtFarmer, believes the intranet strategy journey can be better compared to that of wayfinding. Wayfinding is the act of knowing and doing as we try to make our way through unknown space. It is never the case where we know and then act. The better way to approach strategy is to first act, then we know, and then we can tentatively act again.

So what do we need to know and do to make our way through the unknown space of 2016? As planning is underway, it is a great time to evaluate how well your intranet strategy is aligned with this year’s objectives. Maybe your current intranet strategy needs some adapting, or maybe you have yet to create an intranet strategy. Either way, we have a great workshop guide to help you design an effective strategy to deliver on your overall corporate objectives. At the end of this workshop, you and your stakeholders will walk away with insights about how your intranet can drive your organization’s goals, and a solid action plan of enablers and risk mitigators to make it happen.

This strategic workshop template will help your team collaboratively create a vision for what the intranet will achieve within your organization, and a strategic direction for achieving that vision.

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Intranet Tip: Refreshing Your Intranet Strategy for 2016?


In brief: Evaluate your intranet using James Robertson’s five intranet purposes to determine how your strategy can better support business objectives in 2016.


It’s December, which means strategic planning for 2016 is already underway. It’s a great time to take a step back and look at how well your intranet strategy is aligned with your 2016 objectives. When you find a fit between what intranets are good at doing and your corporate objectives, your intranet strategy will create real value. James Robertson’s five purposes of the intranet outlines key activities that intranets are good at doing:

  1. Content. The repository for published information, both corporate and business-unit specific. This may be structured or unstructured.
  2. Communication. The single channel that reaches all staff, covering top-down communication, local news, and bottom-up feedback.
  3. Collaboration. The platform that connects staff and helps them to work better together. Collaboration may be within a specific area, such as a project, or across organizational boundaries.
  4. Culture. A site that reflects the current culture of the organization, as well as supposed ongoing culture change activities.
  5. Activity. The intranet as a place for doing things, not just reading things. This ranges from simple online forms to large-scale online business processes.
  6. How does your intranet measure up? Based on the above purposes, what 2016 objectives could your intranet help you achieve? Learn more in our eBook chapter If the Intranet’s the Solution, then What’s the Problem?

How does your intranet measure up? Based on the above purposes, what 2016 objectives could your intranet help you achieve?

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Intranet Tip: 5 Essential Tips to Write Compelling Content


In brief: Are employees missing important information? Learn how to make your intranet content more compelling.


The secret to a successful intranet is populating it with content employees want to read. DIALOG, a Canadian architecture firm, has an intranet brimming with engaging news stories. While we can’t curate your content for you, we do have five tips to help you write compelling intranet stories:

  1. Begin the article with an exciting headline: As our previous intranet tip outlined, no one reads news with boring headlines. Write out five headlines and choose the most compelling one.
  2. Embrace a conversational tone: We recommend keeping your tone informal by writing in an active voice, use contractions, ask rhetorical questions, and narrate in second person.
  3. Keep it brief: Employees are busy and won’t have time to digest large amounts of information. Keep your article succinct, to the point, and aim for a maximum of 500 words.
  4. Make it easy to scan: Only 16% of people read online content word-by-word1. Headlines, highlighting keywords, bulleted lists and brevity, make your content easier to digest.
  5. Include a visual component: Photos of staff or videos turn a boring webpage into something visually appealing that will help draw your readers in.

Intranet Tip 40 Screenshot-Blog

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Recorded Webinar: How to Create an Effective Intranet Strategy

Hero-BookBook Chapter 1 Webinar

Organizations have visions of increased employee engagement, productivity, and innovation as a result of implementing their new intranet. But how do you make this happen when there’s multiple stakeholders to manage, unclear goals, and disorganized content? Intranet strategy is the link between those visions and reality. In this 30-minute webinar, Gordon Ross, VP of Strategy at ThoughtFarmer, will take a deep dive into intranet strategy and help you turn corporate goals into real organizational changes with tangible value.

Learn how to:

  • Make strategic decisions by learning the background theory of how intranets work inside organizations.
  • Align your corporate strategy with your intranet strategy to help your organization deliver on it’s overall objectives.
  • Increase employee effectiveness by giving staff tools that help them get their jobs done.

This webinar is now complete, you can view the recording here:


Download the corresponding ebook


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Intranet Tip: Harness the Power of Your Most Influential Voices: the Executives


In brief: Engage staff and strengthen corporate objectives by encouraging your executives to blog on the intranet.


Candid conversations go a long way towards building a trusting work environment and increasing employee morale. A way to facilitate these conversations is to encourage executives to write blog posts for the intranet. Publishing blog posts after quarterly or annual meetings is a great way to extend the conversation. By opening up commenting, leadership can solicit feedback from staff, which in turn makes them feel more valued and engaged with big picture goals.

In the example below, you can see Assiniboine Credit Union’s homepage with a blog post from their CEO, front and centre. The first-ever blog post written by their CEO received an overwhelming number of comments and positive responses praising the level of personal communication, and expressing excitement for more. It quickly became a critical tool for disseminating information and opened the door to a new two-way communication system.


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Intranet Tip: Increase Intranet Adoption with a Scavenger Hunt


In brief: TRS increased adoption by running a scavenger hunt to demonstrate the benefits of their new intranet.


Teachers’ Retirement System of the City of New York (TRS), one of the largest pension systems in the United States, encouraged employees to explore their new intranet through a virtual scavenger hunt. They embedded a questionnaire on their intranet, connecTRS, with questions that could be answered by visiting different areas of the intranet. For example, one question asked, “Name two programs under the NYC Benefits Page.”

You can see below how TRS conducted the scavenger hunt. The result? This fun activity increased adoption and demonstrated that the intranet is a one-stop shop for everything they need to do their jobs efficiently.


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