Employee Communication: Statement of Values


The University of Wisconsin–Madison and its leadership recognize that employee communication is vital to our success. Efficient and effective internal communication helps people find common ground, exchange ideas, and embrace a clear vision of our shared future. This collaboration and clarity strengthens the foundation of learning, discovery, and service across our university and reinforces our commitment to improving people’s lives beyond the classroom.


Our commitment to effective internal communication yields tangible benefits, including:

  • A more pervasive culture of collegiality and collaboration
  • A stronger sense of equity, inclusivity, and respect
  • The proliferation of more brand ambassadors and advocates
  • Higher motivation and morale
  • Improved retention and recruitment
  • Greater productivity, efficiency, and innovation


To achieve these and other outcomes, the University, its leaders, and all of its employees commit to internal communications that are:

  1. Systematic: The University believes that internal communication is a critical component of leadership, management, and day-to-day operations. It is not an elective activity for senders or recipients; rather, it is a duty that requires investments of time, effort and resources by people at all levels of the organization. For consistency, this effort will be led centrally and implemented across all schools, divisions, and units.
  2. Strategic: By engaging in an active communication process, all UW–Madison employees have the opportunity to understand how their individual efforts contribute to larger goals, long-range plans, and a higher purpose.
  3. Transparent: The University strives to be as transparent and accountable as possible, disclosing the rationale for decisions and engaging in open dialogue with employees.
  4. Honest: The University is authentic, conscientious, and equitable when communicating with its employees, promoting confidence and trust. Internal communication is guided by high levels of clarity and integrity.
  5. Timely: UW–Madison employees learn about important news first from its leadership, not from the media or other sources.
  6. Accessible: Internal communication strategies are multi-modal and multi-lingual, ensuring that consistent messages are shared across many channels in ways that duly reach all employees. At the same time, employees play an active role in obtaining information they need.
  7. Proactive: The University communicates about events, issues, and developments in advance so that employees can engage in university life and make informed decisions. This communication addresses both what employees need to know and what they want to know.
  8. Responsive: The institution monitors issues and concerns and responds appropriately to questions, suggestions, and issues. Employees are responsible for reading information, asking questions, and providing appropriate feedback.
  9. Open: Information channels are designed to enable top-down, lateral and bottom-up communication. Employees play a role in disseminating events, policies, issues, and developments. Likewise, all employees are responsible for expressing their own ideas.
  10. Inclusive: Messages must be respectful of differences, to include race, ethnicity, religion, political affiliation, gender, and other factors.
  11. Improved: The institution utilizes formal and informal mechanisms to assess the effectiveness of communication tactics and channels. This is used to improve communication outcomes on a regular basis.

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