Effectively communicating in the office is more than just firing off a few emails or picking up the telephone.
There's a degree of strategy that needs to accompany communication in the workplace. It's about intently listening to others while engaging with them on a level that allows everyone to relate. It's also about being direct and clear about the message being conveyed so as to ensure that it is entirely understood.
The Importance of Effective Communication in the Workplace
Productive communication in the workplace is important on numerous levels. It's involved in creating products, delivering services, engaging employees, satisfying customer needs, and handling vendors. Effective communication, therefore, becomes critical to running a successful and profitable business.
It takes everyone on an organization's team to collectively work towards the common goals of the company, which means all members involved need to be engaged and kept in the loop.
Quite often employees and managers possess different perceptions of value and achievements within the company, and it's typically a gap in proper communication that causes such discrepancies.
Conveying pertinent information to employees and peers is a continual endeavor among business leaders. The need never ceases. It's essentially a predominant component to the job of a leader and demands a lot more effort than sending a blanket memo.
Here are some ways to ensure that your communication lends itself to understanding among employees within your organization.
Tweak Your Message Delivery Depending on the Recipient
Not everyone receives and interprets information the same way. For this reason, perhaps you may want to consider who your recipient is before delivering the message. While some people may prefer to get all the nitty gritty details, others may be satisfied with a quick summary of the facts.
Understand the individual that you're communicating with, and understand how that person interprets information to ensure they're receiving it exactly the way you intended.
Show People Why They Should Care About Your Message
Why should people listen to what you have to say? What is it about the information that will make people want to perk up and listen? Aside from the fact that it's only common courtesy for colleagues to allow others to speak and have their say, many people may be doing so solely out of obligation rather than out of a keen interest in the information you want to convey.
Present the information in such a way that everyone listening would benefit from obtaining and retaining such information. Even better, do your best to fill your team with people who have the same belief system that you do as it aligns with your organization's goals.
Be Direct and To-the-Point
Forget the fluff and fancy filler words. If you can convey your message clearly with 50 words, there's no need to add a few extra hundred just to add some frill. People aren't intent on listening to a long-winded speech or read an extensive email when they could have gotten the same message in a much more concise manner.
Being vague is a pitfall that leaders need to avoid, but unfortunately, it's quite common in the workplace. Instead, resist the urge to dilly-dally around the message; deliver it in as clear and direct a manner as you can.
Deliver Extremely Important News in Person
Whether the news is extremely good or bad news, whenever possible, very important information is best delivered in person. If your company is downsizing or has expanded overseas, news such as this is paramount to the future of the business, as well as all those who are part of it. As such, it's best communicated in person in a matter-of-fact tone and context. It's important to know when an email or voicemail isn't appropriate.
Be Timely in Your Delivery
It's amazing how quickly information can spread around an institution before being officially released by the true source. Usually, such information ends up exaggerated or completely changed altogether. When pertinent information needs to be communicated, it's best to get it out there as soon as it's ready to be wired to everyone in order to eliminate the back-door gossip.
Every savvy leader knows the importance of effective communication in the world of business. But implementing it can be much more effective when you've got strategies to back it up.