Organizational Culture Planning

51% of of employees say they are actively looking for a new job or watching for openings.

-2017 Gallup State of the American
Workplace Report

When talking about a company that has a “strong, corporate culture,” the average person may think of Zappos, Google and Southwest Airlines simply based on their reputations. 

But what does a strong culture actually mean, how can it be implemented into education and what role do communicators play in the process?

It is often frustrating to those of us who have worked so hard at building a strong external brand to sit in meetings with disengaged co-workers operating in silos. Traditionally, improving culture and engagement has been perceived as a job for top administrators or HR; however, communicators are often the most skilled at gaining organization-wide buy-in through connections, messaging and experience.

CommunicatED knows culture.

From our founder’s extensive research in organizational culture to our team’s integral roles in schools’, school districts’ and university’s culture planning, we are passionate about helping our clients understand their own culture and their employees.

If you have a high turnover rate or are finding it difficult to attract and retain top talent, this package is ideal.

Culture is one of the most vital components to an organization

How do you view your organization’s culture? What would you like it to represent? What do you want your employees to say about work when they’re not there? 

CommunicatED’s culture planning is based on the Clark and Estes Gap Analytic Conceptual Framework (2008) which focuses on finding and addressing knowledge, motivation and organizational gaps and influences. We work extensively with our clients to determine the type of work environment they’d like to see and the path they need to take to get there based on the organizational culture assessment.

Read on to learn about our culture planning package.

Campus/School Visits

Initial two-day campus visit to kick-off the project; to conduct one-on-one interviews, focus groups and internal audit; and to observe the current culture and climate.

One- to two-day mid-project visit(s) to observe the culture and to conduct more interviews and focus groups.

Final one-day campus visit to present the program and proposed implementation.


Audit of all recruitment, branding, marketing and internal communications materials.

Weekly Reports

Weekly update report followed by check-in call (30 minutes to one hour).

Culture Assessments

Culture assessments, developed through extensive research, sent to employees with a gap analysis of the results. 

Final Report

The final report will summarize and synthesize all research collected and, if necessary, recommendations will be made as to how to shift the culture, how to implement a strategic internal communications strategy and how to address current culture issues.

Why choose CommunicatED?

Combined, our expert team has more than 40 years of experience in educational communications. We have worked at private schools, independent schools, public school districts, intermediate school districts, charter schools, public universities and private colleges.

Our team members have won more than 50 industry awards for everything from admissions marketing materials to annual reports to institutional websites to graphic design to article placements.

No one in the industry has our same depth, breadth and enthusiasm for all things education. Additionally, our founder’s experience and passion for organizational culture and employee engagement gives us the opportunity to meld business, education and communications best practices…all to benefit you.

Learn by doing

A unique part of our process is that we always show you the ‘why’ behind what we’re doing. Whether it is gathering research, planning out strategies or developing a budget, our team is committed to teaching you the process.

The reason? Dr. Holdsworth’s doctorate is in education and she firmly believes in the Chinese proverb, “Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime.”

Yes, we are educational communications experts and no, we don’t want to put ourselves out of work. However, knowledge is power, and as part of our process, we train you in the higher level components of research, evaluation and strategic communications planning as we proceed through the project.

With Dr. Holdsworth’s dual role as an assistant professor and consultant, she wants our clients to understand the ins and outs of strategic communications for both their current and future projects, whether they are with us, another firm or completed internally.

“Leading a communications team with excellence and continuous positive energy would be an understatement for the effect Dr. Holdsworth had on our department.

I had the privilege of reporting to and working directly with Dr. Holdsworth on several marketing and branding campaigns, and in our time together, we stirred up award-winning pieces, one after another. I don’t think for a second that any compelling piece we published would have been possible without the heartwarming support and uplifting direction from Dr. Holdsworth. She has an incredibly lively and contagious positive attitude that makes the impossible not only achievable, but enjoyable too. Anyone would be lucky to work with a leader like Amanda. Expect many laughs, and for her leadership style to make you sincerely love the work you do!”

Waseem Hammoud, Marketing Specialist, Oakland Schools

How much does the Organizational Culture Planning package cost?

This package starts at $9,000.

Are your travel expenses for the three to four campus visits included in the fee?

Yes, and that is why we note that the package starts at $9,000. If the campus is out of our region or country, the proposal will be modified slightly to reflect the increased travel costs.

Does the entire CommunicatED team visit the campus?

Typically, no. Dr. Holdsworth is usually the only one who visits, but there have been cases where it is necessary for additional staff members to attend the official on-campus meetings.

Who will be involved in our project?

CommunicatED’s staff includes a culture and engagement specialist, a PR and marketing strategist, a digital design strategist, an internal communications strategist and several of our trusted former colleagues and consultants. Dr. Holdsworth serves as the main point-of-contact for all clients.

How long will this take?

Depending on the size and scope of the project, it can take anywhere from two to six months. 

What if we're not happy?

With our transparency throughout the process and committment to teaching you why we do what we do, we hope this isn’t the case. If something does seem off, however, you are always encouraged to contact Dr. Holdsworth at any time.

Ready to get started?

Send us an email with any and all questions or to schedule our services.