Evolving Communications to Match the Company Culture

The Xbox team initially came to us asking for help with using Yammer. We asked them to step back and tell us why - what was it they really needed? It turns out they had a clear goal to make Xbox employees better connected, informed, and heard, and trying Yammer in one small scenario was just their first step.


We then conducted a broader research project, including dozens of interviews with a cross-section of their 4000 employees. One of the themes that came through clearly was a need for more cross-organizational transparency. Most sharing of strategic direction was happening in opaque meetings that not everyone could attend or infrequent org-wide emails.


This led to the creation of a family of SharePoint sites for formal publishing and connected Yammer groups for broad email-free conversations. The environment employed a consistent design, community management to drive the right culture, and analytics across all channels to monitor progress. 


The team is transforming the way they communicate internally. Channels that had never been used previously saw 40% reach (SharePoint) and 300% growth (Yammer). More new channels such as Microsoft Teams and Skype Broadcast are seeing active investment and integration into core rhythms of the business. After 6 months, a plateau in usage was explained by our ongoing interviews: the content wasn’t compelling enough. This is now driving a shift toward more exclusive, video-driven content about the people and culture that unites the team.