How to Communicate Purpose, Strategy & Values with Employees

Caitlin Kirwan

Internal Comms & Engagement Expert

18 Jul 2023

More than 2,000 internal communication and employee experience professionals from across the world contributed to Gallagher’s 2022/23 State of the Sector Survey. The report revealed that for the sixth year in a row, the top priority for 51% of organizations was to effectively communicate purpose, strategy, and values with employees.

But when respondents were asked about their biggest challenges for 2023 and beyond, lack of time and capacity topped the list (34%), followed by disengaged employees (30%). And data from Gallup revealed that the engagement levels of US employees have been falling since the end of 2021, with connection to the mission or purpose of the company being one of the elements with the biggest decline.

Thinking of creative solutions to bridge the gap can be a real struggle when we’re up against it, lacking time or capacity. 

So, here are five ideas to provide you with some inspiration to engage teams around purpose, strategy, and values. Let’s get creative!  

Build a consistent narrative through leader messaging   

In our recent blog on values, How To Promote Company Values Internally in 9 Simple Steps, we talked about the importance of starting with the leadership team. You can’t expect employees to get behind something that the leadership team hasn’t bought into. That’s why it’s necessary to build a consistent narrative that is echoed by those at the top.  

Don’t be afraid to continually remind employees about the company’s purpose, strategy, and values through leader talking points for the start of all-hands meetings, CEO updates, and leader videos. 

It might feel like you’re being repetitive, but it’s important for employees to receive a consistent and aligned narrative from different leaders across the organization. And remember that not every employee will be reading, watching, or listening to every piece of content you share. 

As simple as it sounds, creating a consistent narrative is one of the most important keys to effectively engaging teams around purpose, strategy, and values. Craft your strategy into an engaging story that employees can get behind and understand well enough to repeat to their friends and family. 

Use podcasts for storytelling  

Did you know there are currently 464.7 million podcast listeners globally? 

That’s a lot of people! And the number is predicted to rise to over 504 million by 2024. Podcasts can help to create authentic connections by giving leaders time and space to speak openly about the organization’s purpose, strategy, and values. 

By connecting storytelling and podcasting, you can build compelling narratives to engage and interest employees. Why not invite different people from across the organization to share personal stories of what the company’s purpose means to them and examples of times they’ve seen it in action? Or ask leaders to talk about the shared values that they resonate most with, and why?


Internal storytelling is all about creating relatable content that employees can connect with. And internal podcasts are great channels to use for this type of messaging as they give guests the opportunity to speak in a more natural and engaging way.  

Perhaps a special edition of the podcast could feature the CEO and members of the senior leadership team speaking candidly about the company’s strategy, discussing how it was developed, and sharing what the future could look like. 

Align your recognition program with the organization’s values

A well-implemented employee recognition program significantly increases engagement, productivity, and morale. And aligning the program with organizational values is a great way to recognize and promote a healthy culture.  

When values-based recognition is made visible through effective communication, it creates a positive feedback loop that praises employees who live and breathe them. For tips on communicating employee recognition, check out our blog – Employee Recognition: Why, How and When to Communicate! 

“80% of organizations that linked recognition and values said the programs helped maintain a strong employer brand, compared to just 49% without those ties.” – SHRM

It’s a win-win. Linking your recognition program to the company’s shared values keeps things aligned, consistent, and clear for employees.  


Leverage the power of internal events  

Who doesn’t love a good company event?! 

There are lots of creative ways to use internal events to communicate purpose, strategy, and values and engage your employees in these areas. 

A strategy roadshow is a great way to engage and connect employees with the direction of the business. 

Strategy roadshows provide an opportunity for leaders to introduce new parts of the strategy, give updates on the business, and share progress. 


They can also feature guest speakers, either in-person or on video, sharing inspiring stories that align with your company values. It works well to integrate an exhibition element to encourage two-way engagement, such as different teams showcasing projects they’re working on to bring the strategy to life, or giving attendees an opportunity to share ideas and contribute to the future.  

Logistically, different leaders from across the organization can speak at events at different locations to save on travel requirements, and the roadshow itself can be spread over multiple months to reduce the burden on senior leaders. If budgets are tight, we suggest hosting mini pop-ups and internal TED Talk-style events in each location. These kinds of events can still be very impactful, without the need for external venues, catering, or materials! 

Review your internal channels

We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again… consistency is king! 

Your company’s purpose, strategy, and values should pull through all of your internal communications. While you might not always explicitly reference them, it’s important to continue building a consistent narrative with identifiable language and tone.  

Reviewing your internal channels is a great way to check that messaging is clear, consistent, and reflective of the shared values. As a starting point, audit the language used across your intranet, employee app, newsletter templates, and onboarding documents.

Once you’re comfortable that the language and tone of internal messaging reflect the shared values, another quick win is to build a bank of visual assets so you can communicate purpose, strategy, and values with some lasting flair. 

This kind of pre-approved messaging is very handy when you’re lacking time and capacity. Perhaps it’s time to think about some friendly bribery for your friends in the creative department!  

In the meantime, learn how Workvivo can help you communicate purpose, strategy, and values with your employees in lots of exciting ways. Book your demo today!