How to Communicate With Your Staff
Don't let poor communication among your workers and managers get worse. It can lead to a serious decline in your firm's health. But there are ways to perk up communication. Here are some smart tips for improvement:
Check in with employees on a regular basis. Meet with them either in person or online every few weeks or months, inviting discussions about their projects, tasks and the organization as a whole.
- Employees want to be heard, want to share thoughts and opinions.
- This will improve internal communication throughout your entire organization, empowering your employees to feel comfortable in their positions.
Make internal knowledge and documents easily available. Especially for new employees, it can be difficult to learn the ropes and understand how the company actually operates.
- Make internal knowledge easily available via documentation on your intranet.
- Keep communication flowing.
Assess your communication methods. There's email, telephone, messaging and in-person communication — some of these modes may be more useful than others.
- Email is probably not the best way to have a conversation with someone.
- Consider collaboration tools.
- By assessing how your organization communicates, you can decide whether you're missing a particular method, relying too heavily on one form or it's time to make some changes.
Implement social intranet software, for instance. Comprising a variety of tools that can help improve daily business processes, an intranet features a platform that allows easy retrieval of old conversations.
- It empowers employees to bounce ideas off each other in a judgment-free environment.
Have an open-door policy. Employees wonder how to communicate with managers and CEOs. They may not feel comfortable approaching the boss, and this apprehension blocks communication.
- Allow communication flows so all employees feel comfortable bringing up important points — anything they want to bring to your attention at any time.
- This is immensely beneficial to your business's internal communication.
- It makes you more approachable.
- It motivates employees.
Take advantage of social media. It's a powerful aid for business.
- Employees can comment and share interesting posts that may relate to your organization.
- It creates interesting and meaningful work-related conversations.
- It combines relationship-building with business goals and philosophies.
Create an internal language to improve your employee engagement strategy.
- Perhaps use a set of acronyms throughout the day to describe certain aspects of business. Consider made-up slang based on inside jokes or company principles.
- See this as a fun way to keep things interesting throughout the week.
Strengthen connections between managers and employees. If managers and employees don't work hand in hand with each other, encourage stronger, more collaborative relationships.
- Go beyond employees simply reporting to managerial staff with status updates.
Don't chastise mingling. Watercooler chat may seem like wasted time and, therefore, wasted money, but it's an essential aspect of relationship-building.
- Employees need to get to know one another.
- They can't always be discussing work — off-topic conversations and debates during the workday help meld employee relationships.
And here are some short ways to get with it:
- Let communication be a two-way street. One-way control, top-down communication has gone the way of the dodo.
- Hold teamwork in high regard. Ask employees to take a team-based approach — it helps them feel comfortable collaborating with co-workers.
- Take inventory of your own communication skills. You want to serve as a model leader? Look within and work on improving your own skills.
Improving workplace communication can be time-consuming, but it is best approached by trying to implement a number of tips at the same time. You're bound to see positive results. For more on how you can improve internal communication, give us a call.