Whether it’s spoken or via email, the way we share information is a crucial part of life. This is especially the case in the workplace, where communication plays an integral role in your organisation’s effectiveness.
Get workplace communication wrong and it could disrupt operations and cause open conflict between colleagues. But get it right and it could lead to greater employee productivity and engagement.
So, what can you do to create a culture of effective communication?
In this article, we’ll share four ways to improve communication in your workplace.
Make important information accessible
Like every organisation, your company has its own set of internal knowledge, terminology, and protocols that are followed. New employees can come to understand these given enough time – but how much smoother would their arrival be if the information was freely accessible in a centralised place? Whether you compile it into a new starter welcome pack or upload it onto a centralised human resource management system, you’ll make it far easier for fresh employees to understand how your organisation operates.
Hold regular 1 to 1s
Frequent check-ins are important, giving employees a dedicated time to ask and discuss questions. Giving this space for communication ensures that you’re able to work through concerns before they grow into resentments or open conflict. So, schedule a regular time to catch up with each of your staff. This could be on a weekly or monthly basis – use factors like the nature of their role and their personal needs to choose a suitable timeframe on a case-by-case basis. These meetings are essential for discussing the present condition of the workplace, discoursing the priorities, and recognizing the issues that the employees are experiencing. In these meetings, you should also discuss the happiness and satisfaction of the employees and try to find out the best possible way to make them happy.
Many leaders simply explain what, how and when while distributing tasks. But to fully communicate with your team, you need to properly explain why. Without understanding the purpose behind their duties, it’s difficult for staff to deliver the desired results. Understanding why makes the difference between simply following a set of instructions regardless of the outcome and taking ownership of achieving the outcome, using prescribed processes and any other means needed to get there. Above all, you should explain why the task is meaningful for the business and how your employees’ role will contribute to broader goals. Remember, if you can communicate positively with your employees, it will motivate them to work positively and efficiently.
Provide constructive feedback
When things go wrong, simply pointing it out or even criticising employees will only add to their frustrations. Chances are they already know that they messed up and feel bad about it. What they need to know is how to prevent it from happening again and what they could do better in a similar situation. This is where giving constructive feedback comes in. Giving your employees new understanding after a mistake not only helps them learn from them but also gives them a sense of trust and belief that they can communicate openly with you about issues whenever they arise.
These are four important methods to improve communication in your workplace. Which of these methods, according to you, could make the biggest difference to communication in your workplace?