Why I banned corporate memos, Accenture CEO Julie Sweet reveals

Why I banned corporate memos, Accenture CEO Julie Sweet reveals

Julie Sweet became CEO of Accenture's North American business in 2015, worth $16billion, and transformed the traditional way CEOs communicate with staff.

The executive says one of the best leadership decisions she's ever made is expelling the corporate memo.

She told CNBC: "When I became CEO about 18 months ago, I banned the memo. I said, ‘I'm going to use webcast. I'm going to use video’."

Exchanging the traditional email for live-streamed conversations or pre-taped video messages has improved communication across her team of 50,000 employees, she says, since "it allows you to be more authentic and less scripted."

Sweet's live-streams are unscripted and leave time for the audience to ask questions that can be sent online. The pre-recorded videos she creates with her team are scripted, but are better at conveying emotion than text, Sweet explained.

If you're trying to create an atmosphere where people can be honest, "then you need people to show up to events and feel like leaders are being authentic with them," she added. She also said that employees are looking for leaders who are less formal, and being “off the cuff” encourages real conversation and problem solving.

She recommends other companies to consider getting rid of the corporate memo in exchange for a more personal option.

“It is very hard to transform your culture and your workforce to be a relevant company in the digital world if all of your processes are stuck in the traditional world," she reasoned. She also said that businesses should avoid PowerPoint for internal company presentations as they are even worse than corporate emails.

Features


Read More

Guide to Interim Management

Guide to Interim Management 2016

Top Insights

Daily news and market insights straight to your inbox

HR Grapevine Magazine Latest Issue

Magazine Features