4 Secrets to Using Video to Create a Culture of Engagement

Ever wonder why some companies have such happy employees? It’s more than just the chance to work on a quality product or reap a few extra benefits and perks.

Corporate Culture - Panopto Video PlatformIf you ask them, those companies will tell you they work hard to create a happy culture. Here’s how video can help you do the same.

Zappos founder Tony Hsieh’s book, Delivering Happiness: A Path to Profits, Passion and Purpose is one of the most successful business books of recent years. And no wonder—it’s full of meaningful insight on what’s not working in the culture of many companies—and how business leaders can turn theirs around.

From his book come three strategies on this vital subject. To this we add our thoughts as to how video can help you carry them out.

A happy company encourages learning and growth.
Hsieh reports Zappos assigns required reading to employees to be completed on their own schedule. Their extensive training program includes classes like Company History; Intro to Finance; Company Culture; Science of Happiness 101; Communication 1, 2, and 3; and more.

Other companies have taken similar programs even further with video, using the visual element of the medium to better engage employees and help ideas connect and stick. Our customers tell us that supporting and scaling training is one of the biggest benefits they find with video — one that helps them deliver information in a way employees actually enjoy.

A happy company surprises their customers.
Hsieh writes that Zappos, takes great pains to ensure their customer service standard is much higher than their industry’s average. The company prides itself on service and communication, and regularly surprising customers better-than-promised delivery.

Many of our clients tell us they use video as a key part of setting their organization apart from their competition. Sales representatives that use video greetings and follow-ups create a unique, more personalized experience for their clients. Marketing professionals that make video a large part of the company website improve both Google rankings and site usability. Video FAQ QR codes are often a welcome addition to a product’s user manual—and these are just a few examples.

A happy company gives their employees happiness motivators.
Hsieh notes that Zappos not only implements external motivators like bonuses — the company also takes care to provide thoughtful, timely, and genuine performance feedback to help employees learn and grow.

Here too, as many organizations have found, video can be the perfect tool for coaching employees with effective feedback. Video enables trainers to include quizzes and comprehension tests to ensure viewers understand the lesson. And with video, employees can record themselves to practice their skills and watch themselves in action later—a recipe for a truly objective performance assessment.

Zappos has long been famous for its corporate culture — and while the company sets a high bar for corporate culture, that shouldn’t deter other organizations from trying to clear it. At Panopto, though, we think that similar success strategies are within the reach of almost any company — and having the right tools for the job can certainly help.

Tyler Cowen, author of the insightful book Discovering Your Inner Economist: Use Incentives to Fall in Love, Survive Your Next Meeting, and Motivate Your Dentist, discusses which workplace elements provide the best employee motivation and help to build the strongest workplace cultures:

  1. Effective, fast feedback
  2. Cultural identification/company pride
  3. Pride in one’s accomplishment
  4. Regular challenges

Changing workplace culture can affect employee engagement in a long-term, sustainable way. Doing so can increase employee retention rates, boost productivity, and help corporate teams create truly happy employees.

For those organizations ready to take on the challenge of building a better internal culture, video can be a powerful tool. Here’s why:

Video helps employees receive effective, fast feedback on their progress.

When employees record videos, they don’t always do it for others — sometimes, it’s for their own enrichment instead. While taking part in online training allows for effective, fast feedback on their learning progress, watching themselves practice an important presentation offers the objectivity employees they need to improve. Peers and supervisors can use the video as well to provide added input and advice.

Video increases one’s cultural identification and company pride.

CEO video recordings, particularly those created using an informal, personal style, convey more than mere text in an email ever could. The same is true for company overview videos and culture pieces, as during employee onboarding. If you aren’t currently appealing to your employees’ emotional and cultural identification using this rich medium, you are missing out on a simple opportunity paying dividends that are truly inestimable.

Video allows for greater pride in one’s accomplishment.

For employee motivation, there’s almost nothing that’s as powerful as seeing the physical result of one’s hard work. With some jobs, though, such a reward can be hard to come by. However, with video, the knowledge one acquires after long-term employment can become a physical, concrete, sharable company asset. Best practices videos, FAQ videos and the like can be stored and shared for years to come. This not only saves the company training costs and valuable employee time—it also allows for that pride in accomplishment on the part of the employee that created it.

Video can facilitate various kinds of challenges.

With an effective video recording tool and video content management system (VCMS) in place, numerous avenues open up to almost all company departments. The sales team can create video reenactments of best sales practices. The marketing team can create real-life product demonstrations viewable by employees and customers alike. Subject matter experts (SMEs) can create FAQ-style videos, and anyone can easily record and share meetings with remote or absent employees.

Ed Diener and Robert Biswas-Diener, coauthors of Happiness: Unlocking the Mysteries of Psychological Wealth, say that research shows that challenges look easier when you’re happy—but it’s just as true that employees are happier when feeling more challenged. Video helps with both sides of this equation—and our customers’ real-life results convince us that the employee satisfaction they see as a result of their video systems are significant indeed.

Ready to try using video in your organization?
Panopto makes it easy for businesses and universities to record, manage, search, and share just about any kind of video. To see how Panopto can help you build your organization’s culture with video, contact our team for a free trial today.

Published: August 26, 2014