Original Date: 09/20/2004
Revision Date: 01/18/2007
Information : Communication Process
Forest City Gear established a process of continuously keeping employees involved in the company’s process improvements and ensuring they are informed of technical external events. This provides employees with confidence that their input makes a difference in the company and their effort makes a difference in the community.
Forest City Gear’s (FCG’s) employees were often uninformed of internal and external organizational activities and lacked a way to make anonymous suggestions for company improvement. It became critical to obtain ownership throughout the workforce on important company decisions. FCG adopted several practices to help gather employee inputs, implement them throughout the organization, and continuously communicate organizational information. The company implemented a suggestion box program, encouraging employees to provide comments for possible organization-wide improvements. Senior Management reviews these suggestions and incorporates those that are applicable to the vision of the organization.
FCG’s Senior Management participates in various community activities, including those sponsored by the Chamber of Commerce, to improve the dynamics of its strategic involvement in the region. One method of community contributions includes donations to the local Tech Works program a regional manufacturing training facility that facilitates employee training in specific machinery techniques at local companies. FCG has been instrumental in the development of the Manufacturing Association of the Rock River Valley (MARRV) program through the local Chamber of Commerce. MARRV established a way for regional companies to team-up and provide a solution to help the growth of the local industrial strength. FCG’s Senior Management holds monthly employee meetings where specific organizational information is communicated to the workforce. This information includes the organization’s present state, employee suggestion outcomes, and information gathered from external activities. The meetings are also another opportunity for employees to voice their opinions and discuss issues with Senior Management. The meeting facilitators highly encourage verbal input throughout the stages of the meeting, which often leads to further discussion.
FCG’s Communication Process has fostered employee ownership throughout the company. Senior Management developed a way to communicate their decisions and regional industrial activity to their workforce, while obtaining their employees’ view on organizational issues. The Communication Process improved overall company morale and introduced possibilities for future improvements.
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