A highly-skilled workforce does not automatically guarantee your enterprise’s success. Without an efficient information relay system your business’s efficiency can be compromised. Indeed, this is the reason many fledgling companies never achieve their full potential.
According to research carried out by Salesforce, 86% of employees and business executives pinpoint poor communication as the primary cause of workplace failures within and between teams. A McKinsey report shows that teams with efficient information relay systems showed a 20-25% increase in productivity.
The statistics on display above are why communication is a core value leaders must possess. It doesn’t matter if you control a small closely-knit team or a group of team leaders. You would have to be as clear as possible – as no one is a mindreader. How can you communicate better and build an efficient information relay system? Here is how:
Organize Interactive and Open Team Meetings
No matter the personality you possess as a leader, you are charismatic in some way and form. As a result, it is imperative that you hold meetings that are not too formal as these can be draining and feel as if it’s a continuation of work. By keeping the tone of conversation more casual, participants may feel comfortable enough to state their fears, challenges, and misgivings that other team members can relate to and possibly recommend how to go about addressing them.
There’s no strict rule that says meetings must be held in offices (unless your organization clearly states that). You can also choose to have meetings outside workplaces: in parks or in restricted areas of restaurants.
Convey Message Using Simple Vocabulary
Communication channels are incredibly tricky. With assumptions and inference waiting in the minds of your listeners to jump in, you must talk in simple and clear sentences. Also, how you speak is crucial. Professor Emeritus of Psychology Albert Mehrabian confirmed that speech tone and demeanor were important to sounding trusting or authoritative.
He found out that we take 7% of meanings from words, 38% from the way they are said, and 55% from the speakers’ facial expressions. Hence, all three factors must be covered effectively or your employees and team members may read meaning into what you say. And possibly in the wrong way.
Maintain a Widely-Accepted Communication Channel
It can be quite challenging to maintain multiple channels of dispensing communication – especially if there’s a delivery lag. And if there’s one, some members of the team will be on the front foot, and others will be unaware. This lack of quality will stifle the productivity of teams and the rate of response to emergencies.
As Zahi Daniel, founder and CEO of Adapt Solution would put it “Excellent communication is very crucial both in business management processes and in the entirety of any business. There is no process without great communication hence the reason companies invest a ton of money in strategy, road maps, white papers, workflow flowcharts, business plans, and more.”
A WhatsApp, Telegram, or even a Slack Channel are optimized for varying-sized teams. Some connect only via email. This may come off as counterproductive as certain members of your staff may have programmed themselves to use the email app on waking up and returning to bed. Unless across teams, use email sparingly.
Utilize Project Management Tools
Assigning tasks via word of mouth is not sustainable. You or the employee may forget the details of the task delegated, which can potentially cause a disagreement. A recurrence of this soon thickens and strains the employer-employee relationship. Using project management tools like Asana and Trello to assign, track progress, and keep tabs on completed tasks ensures that you’re kept abreast regardless of formal briefing.
This way, the chances of confrontation are significantly reduced and employees will make sure projects are completed in a timely manner as everything is on record and progress is more closely monitored by multiple team members.
Commend As Loud As You Critique
Inside of every adult is a small child who wants to be pampered. As such, your criticisms must never be an attack on an employee’s personality. Ensure that your demeanor and choice of words when criticizing do not suggest anything like you’re championing a vendetta.
If you dish out recommendations in meetings and other joint gatherings, appreciate and commend your workers’ efforts in implementing what was asked of them. You can even throw in a reward for the exceptional ones. An appreciation/reward system makes team members eager to implement suggestions and see criticisms as what it is: a suggestion at navigating a workplace problem better.
Get Help if your Business Needs it
Are you failing in your mission because your operations are inefficient or your communication channels just don’t work? Reaching out to a consultant can help you identify and fix faulty communication and finely tune your business process management channels to suit your company’s unique requirements.
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