Permission to Speak – Leadership Blog – Kelly Vandever Interviews Hannah Beasley on Communicating with Non-Email Employees

podcast-logo-episode-22Permission to Speak

Video Blog & Podcast

Hosted by Leadership Communications Expert Kelly Vandever

Permission to Speak is the video blog and podcast that loiters at the intersections of leaders who want their people to speak up, technology that facilitates connections, and results that serve an organization’s higher purpose.

Our guest for this episode:  Hannah Beasley

Hannah has a reputation for challenging the status quo and pushing ahead into the era of mobile, social, and on-demand-everything.   That mindset, paired with her experience coordinating enterprise sales and implementations, lead Hannah to become the Director of Sales and Success at Red e App.

Red e App is a mobile communication platform designed specifically for the more than 2.1 billion non-desk and hourly workers who do not have access to email.

Hannah has authored more than a dozen articles but the one that caught Kelly’s eye is called “Improve job satisfaction by giving employees a voice,” which is what lead Kelly to ask Hannah for this interview.


Topics discussed:

– Common misconceptions is that employees that learn less income are less likely to own a smart phone.  In reality, those employees are smart phone dependent.   The phone is their primary connection to the internet.

– Challenges with communications in companies where a large percent of their population doesn’t have email include (1) the communication is almost never real time, (2) the message could get warped as it rolls down the chain of command, (3) hard for communications to come back up the chain of command.

– Benefit of going digital:  (1) can get the information up the chain of command more quickly, (2) employees prefer communications directly on my mobile device, (3) analytics, you’re able to get measurement around your communications.

– Organized way to reply to employee suggestions individually, let’s people know someone cares and someone is responding… even if the answer is no.

– A crisis like Hurricane Matthew reiterates the importance of being able to easily communicate with your workforce.

– Generally there’s also an innovator within the organization that says there has to be a better way

– Non-desk workers are highly dependent on their smart phones.

– Non-desk workers, depending on the organization, can also have a high number of millennials and they have a lot of turnover

– Mobile platforms and better communications can make a big difference in helping keeping those employees more connected and reduce turn over.  Even a small percentage increase could be a big dollar benefit to the organization.

Mike from McDonald’s Facebook post

– Non-desk workers have hopes and dreams and goals.

– What do you call your hourly employees?  Team members?  Employees?  What you call them says a lot about how you view your employees.

– Caring about your employees is important!  Though we shouldn’t have to say that!

– To aid adoption, understand what your employees want and need versus just having your corporate agenda.

– Surveys and conversations with non-desk workers to see what will work best to improve communications

– Know triggers that are important to employees that will encourage them to use an app like Red e App

– Examples of employee triggers are (1) internal job postings (2) getting their schedule on their phone (3) benefits information (4) cafeteria menus

– Employees having a means for speaking up can make a difference.  Examples Hannah has seen include (1) bringing safety issue to the fore front (2) broken windows – find something broken but don’t know who to tell to get it fixed (3) manufacturing facility found materials and no one knew whose it was

– Crowd sourcing your problems, asking your employees to help solve business problems more quickly

– To make it easier to get people to speak up, you have to make it a safe place, eliminate fear

– Provide positive reinforcement when people do speak up

– Give people feedback on their suggestion, even if the answer is no because or we’ll keep it in mind

– Hannah’s pleasant surprises have been seeing how companies take care of people and how employees are loyal to their company

– Really helpful having an app like Red e app for those 3rd shift employees or those who work in isolated locations

– How can I prove the ROI of doing these kind of tool?

– Patrick Lencioni book, The Advantage.

– Communications and the health of your organization is the future advantage for the future

– An engaged workforce is the competitive advantage of the future (and now)!

Questions Answered:

Can you communicate with non-desk workers with smart phone apps?  Do they even have smart phones?

How do you increase the likelihood that employees will use a communications app for work?

Why should leaders care about communicating by smart phone app with employees?

What is unique about non-desk, hourly workers?

What are the communications challenges for companies that have a large percent of the workforce who doesn’t have an email address?

How do I better communicate with my employees when they don’t have a company email address?

How can I improve communication with my employees?

How can I make it safe for employees to speak up?

How can I prove ROI for a communications tool?

How do I demonstrate ROI for an enterprise social tool?

Books Discussed:


Kelly Vandever is a leadership and communications expert who helps leaders and organizations thrive in today’s attention-deficit, entertain-me-now, wait-while-I-post-that-on-Facebook world.   Connect with Kelly and discover how being professionally human can bring you better business results. 

Contact Kelly by phone at 770-597-1108, email her or tweet her @KellyVandever.

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