“Employees have a deeper affiliation with the message through organizational storytelling due to aligning stories with their own experiences and understanding”- International Journal of Business and Social Science

“[onboarding] can also aid employees in identifying values congruence which is critical to career contentment and commitment which can significantly impact retention to both the field and the institution long-term” - Journal of Research, Assessment, and Practice in Higher Education

“116% growth in spoken word listeners 13-34 years old in the past even years, with 18% growth in the last year”- National Public Radio Organization

“The corporate world cannot ignore the demands and expectations of Millennials, who are devout in their desire to associate with companies aligned with their values”- Center for Social Impact Communication at Georgetown University

“Narrative presentation of corporate strategy, comparative advantage, is more effective at producing a consistent and confident choice of competitive advantage among an audience than a presentation of corporate strategy using a PowerPoint style, bulleted list approach”- Journal of Strategy and Management

“The storytelling process yields positive impacts on internal and external stakeholder outcomes including increasing employees’ thriving and meaningful work, as well as the attitudes and trust of multiple external stakeholders”- Journal of Strategic Marketing

“The audiobook market share shifted from 42% digital copy sales in 2009 to 87% digital copy sales in 2017”- Audio Publishers Association

Millennials are more technologically advanced than any previous generation [and] survey data has shown a correlation between age and reading preferences [where] younger people listen to more audiobooks than older Americans”- State University of New York

“73% of the U.S. 12+ population (an estimated 209 million people) have listened to online audio in the last month, up from 68% in 2021”- Edison Research

“A poor cultural fit is frequently cited as one of the main reasons [an employee] decides to leave an organization… defining the organization's culture through storytelling should start with branding of the organization and continue through the interview and onboarding process”- Physician Executive Communication Journal

“As technology evolves, people have more options available to them, which may explain why [reports] found younger adults to be more likely to opt for audiobooks and the multi-tasking they enable”- Forbes

“The majority (79%) of Millennials want to work for a company that cares about how it contributes to society and 69% would refuse to work for a company that is not socially responsible”- Journal of Education For Business

“Spoken word audio listening is up 40% in the past seven years, and up 8% year over year”- National Public Radio Organization and Edison Research

“Three uses for storytelling in organizations: (1) to motivate employees, (2) for education and (3) to consolidate corporate culture”- Journal of Marketing

“Storytelling that integrates a moral and spiritual component can transform an organizational culture so members of the organization begin to feel connected to a larger community and a higher purpose”- Journal of Business Ethics

“There is value in a story that is, designed to drive the simulation and to elicit the [employee’s] best performance”- Society for Human Resource Management

“Audiobook sales revenue has been on a steep rise since 2018, reaching 1.3 billion USD in 2020”- Statista

“Maximizing success through onboarding by storytelling during orientations, [helps employees understand] the company's culture and values [and] its goals and history”- Society for Human Resource Management

“Audio narrative has recently benefited from profound cultural shifts in media consumption associated with on-demand television’s binge watching revolution and the advent of digital longform storytelling”- Journal of Radio & Audio Media

“Audiobooks have had a big shift in popularity in 2018 where for the first time, “a full half of all Americans ages 12 and older have listened to an audiobook, up from 44% last year”- Forbes

“When it comes to digital storytelling for branding, there is, a more positive attitude towards the company when the employer branding message is using digital storytelling”- Management Dynamic in the Knowledge Economy Journal

“Stories are a device… [that] provide managers with a form of social and intersubjective interaction that reflects belief systems, role expectations, interpersonal norms and conditions for work behavior”- International Journal of Management

“Story-telling is an important element… involving the sharing of experiences and creation of mental-maps of the environment in which people are motivated to perform to their full potential”- Leadership and Organization Development Journal

“Researchers have shown that storytelling strengthens the connections consumers have to brands, so that to a great extent what a brand means to a consumer is based . . . on the narratives he or she has constructed that incorporate the brand.”- Journal of Business Strategy

“A focus on social responsibility is particularly important to attract, retain, and increase the commitment and engagement of Millennial employees and talented women”- Center for Creative Leadership

“64% of Millennials consider a company’s social commitments when taking jobs and will not work for a company if they do not have strong corporate social responsibility (CSR) values”- Cone Communications

“19% [of Millennials] say they have paid in the last year for a subscription service for eBooks or audiobooks such as Kindle Unlimited or Audible”- American Press Institute

“Storytelling is essential to successful branding, since your brand is the sum of all your corporate behaviors and communications that inform your customers’ experiences with your product or company”- The Journal of Business Strategy

“Corporate storytelling is suggested to help demonstrate the importance of the corporate brand to internal and external stakeholders… as well as help a firm to bond with its employees”- Product & Brand Management

“Employees have a deeper affiliation with the message through organizational storytelling due to aligning stories with their own experiences and understanding”- International Journal of Business and Social Science

“Audio platform superiority was about the desire to use an audio platform that is perceived to be superior to other audio alternatives, including on-demand convenience (time and place) and content (vari- ety and uniqueness)”- New Media and Society Journal

“Storytelling that starts with the persona allows us to tap into these deeper recesses, where the influence of attitudes and emotions is greater… loyalty and trust are found there”- Journal of Business Strategy

“Brands can bring their CSR (corporate social responsibility) efforts to life through authentic storytelling [and] Millennials want to know what companies are doing to make the world a better place”- Center for Social Impact Communication at Georgetown University

“Over 71 thousand audiobook titles (were) published in 2020, a 39% growth between previous years”- Statista

“Online audio (podcasts, radio shows, music and audiobooks) has become more popular than ever before”- Publishing Research Quarterly

“Should produce positive effects on key audiences, such as increasingly positive attitudes toward the company and eventually behavioral intentions to support this company”- Public Relations Review

“[the way employees are on-boarded] sets the tone for the culture of a place, the people, and the values of a new institution and can have a significant impact on employees’ sense of belonging”- Journal of Research, Assessment, and Practice in Higher Education

“83% of Millennials would be more loyal to a company that allows them to contribute to social and environmental issues”- Cone Communications

“There are currently about 1000% more titles published since 2011”- Audio Publishers Association

“The most recent era in audio entertainment… users are asserting power over the medium to select particular content at particular times”- Mass Communication and Society Journal

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Get Your Work-From-Home Employees Back to the Corporate Office by Rebooting Your Company Culture

IT FEELS LIKE A PRISON!

Business Audio Theatre October 2, 2020 25


Background
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Many companies are already planning to eventually bring their remote employees back to the corporate offices. Interestingly, productivity has not taken a hit with work-from-home. So why bring them back to the office?
Perhaps, now employers feel their employees can work more safely back at the office. Perhaps they feel they will be able to exert more control. Perhaps companies are trying to get ROI on their commercial leases or properties they own. They continue to pay overhead on these investments and may as well utilize them again, right?

A Taste of “Freedom”

But even if they can legally demand that their workforce return, they face a mounting challenge. By sending their people home in the first place, they gave those remote employees a taste of freedom. And now, they may never want to go back. If they are demanded to do so, will they come back begrudgingly or  take their skillset to a competitor that offers work-from-home?

Loss of Routine

The physical ties with their employer have been cut for some time. An employee’s physical presence is no longer required. Their work has been reorganized to be all online! No more daily reinforcing routine including the coffee, shower, business clothes, breakfast and commute. No more social ties with folks you used to see daily at work. No more small talk in the coffee room or at the watercooler. Now work is just an icon on their desktop!

Savings and Responsibilities

By now they’ve begun to enjoy the economic savings on commute costs and dry-cleaning, and then there’s the time savings that work-from-home has provided. Meanwhile their younger kids needs daycare and their older ones need special attention as they try to school from home. Getting your work-from-home employees back to the office will be tough enough with these existential considerations. But even if the companies can solve those, they are now faced with another unexpected challenge.

Prison

Many work-from-homers have finally escaped certain aspects of the company culture that they always took issue with. It’s just now that they have had enough of a breather from those cultural issues, that they are beginning to look at their employment more objectively. Do they even like the company culture? Will they be excited to return to the office and submit themselves to the same culture they left? Or will they say, “It still feels like a prison!”

Cultural Reboot

We think any kind of employee repopulation program will require a re-boot of company culture. Things have changed since employees were sent home. Not only have they been working without the daily influence of the less-than-desirable aspects of their company’s culture, but now they have had time to think it over. What are they going back to? Culture is quickly becoming a leading factor in the decision to go back to the office.

Now is the time for companies to take a long hard look at their own company culture. How does it make employees feel about investing their careers with the company? What can be done to make that culture more attractive? There are many aspects of company culture beyond style and communication. One of those aspects is company history, principles, and purpose. Not just the “how”, but the “why”.

Performed, Not Just Narrated

We think that the best way to communicate the “why” is through story. And the best way to communicate story is through an audio play. Why audio? Because it’s completely mobile. Untethered by page or screen, it delivers an entertainment and learning experience for the employee. Why play? Because employees will identify with the founders and company story, pulling for them to succeed as they face and overcome the challenges that made their own job possible.

Actors play the parts in important scenes from the company’s history. Seminal milestones, pivots, and breakthroughs are all brought to life with entertaining dialogue, sound effects and music. Employees connect with their company anew. They have more appreciation for how their company originated, what it stands for, and why the procedures, relationships, and organization work.

Business Audio Theatre is a compelling onboarding and training tool that can tell the company’s story in a way that adds significant value to an overall reboot of the company’s culture. Welcome your work-from-home employees back to a culture that makes them feel like they are part of the story, a story they can identify with, a story they are proud to support as employees.

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