Effective communication in a team can do wonders. For example, accountants and lawyers should help sales department to sell quickly. De facto, the opinion of the latter may differ from the goals of the company while the lawyers may tell they have to wait until the counterpart signs important documents, acts, etc. A big question arises – how to make all departments follow a common goal and work as a holistic mechanism?
Undoubtedly, the effectiveness of the company depends on communications, both internal (between CEO and staff) and external (customers, suppliers, public authorities, etc.). And not without reason – information has quite tangible parameters:
- Speed. This index affects the efficiency of decision-making. For example, the vendor has changed the price, and the company has to change the prices and notify customers. A slight delay – and the business will fold up.
- Objectivity and completeness. This parameter characterizes the accuracy of goal setting. For example, misunderstanding of a technical task leads to the loss of time and resources.
- Relevance. You should keep up with times. For instance, you should react immediately to the reduction of prices by competitors. Do it in a week, and you’ll be outperformed. You always have a little time to respond. Meanwhile, the market may become saturated, leaving you behind.
The three reasons above make CEOs think about the information flows and means of communication. As for the information flows, they must match the business processes and interconnect employees, executives, and interested parties.
- For example, clients’ suggestions to change the characteristics of products can be transferred through sales department, which reduces the objectivity and timeliness of information, or go directly to the development department, which makes the company closer to the customer (as the developers will be able to process proposals and make the necessary changes much quicker).
The effectiveness of the company can be greatly increased by creating an effective “horizontal” flow of information between employees, which is especially important when running a collective work, or if the process needs coherence.
Humaneness as the Key to Success
The involvement of staff in internal communications occurs due to awareness of staff of business goals of the company and how they coincide with their personal aspirations. The ultimate goal of any company is to make each and every employee its ambassador, making everything possible to engage the staff in the internal life of the corporation. Finally, whether workers know it or not, they are always ambassadors of the organization, even in private life.
Of course, the way people perceive the brand depends not only on advertising and the policy but also on what the employees say about the company.
Ineffective Communication and Effective Communication in a Team
The development of a program of effective internal communications should start with a general assessment of the management environment. The next goes the examining of the organizational structure and type of existing utilities. To assess the current state of the team and the level of employees’ satisfaction, it is necessary to conduct a small internal study that will determine which forms of communication are the most appropriate and effective for workers. The results will show whether you can introduce new types of communications – like a business messenger or team chat – and will also reveal weak points if the company has ones.
Suggestion boxes and general meetings are the two most common ways of communication between employees and management. But they are ineffective if they get no response. To make a communication channel work at its full, you should consider several points:
- Leaders of high rank need to come to the meetings in advance and communicate with employees to inspire and bring them together.
- The organizers of such meetings must be able to engage the audience in dialogue.
- The participants should prepare questions in advance and submit them in printed form.
It is also important to establish clear criteria for determining information that should be released to the staff. Such information can increase workers’ satisfaction with the company and increase productivity. The awareness of the affairs of the company and the awareness of their role make employees support the company’s goals, and they get more confidence in the leadership. On the contrary, withholding information or silence leads to rumors and destabilizes teamwork.
The communications should occur in several ways, such as:
- Personal conversations with employees.
- Through your collaboration software.
- The use of video and cable television.
- Annual staff report.
- Message boards.
- Official website and blog with competent posts.
- Informal corporate meetings.
Modern workers are not inclined to blindly obey the orders of the leadership. They rather have great independence: without hesitation, they leave the company if something does not suit. Personal needs are very important. Ultimately, these needs define the degree diligent and hardworking.
Today, most employees want to be sure that their company cares about them. Unfortunately, some managers do not take this into account. Not always attempts to deal with corporate governance problems by small means, the introduction of payment by results, the development of more effective goals, and periodic staff training produce the desired effect. People often lack simple human relations.
But to bring this idea to life is much harder than to recognize it. To do this, you need to have clearly expressed principles and corporate values. By proclaiming them, the company demonstrates the employees how it intends to win their trust.
And one more thing: the development of values should be carried out by the workers themselves, not by a group of managers or a special agency. If the company is not ready to implement the stated values, it’s better not to inspire employees with these changes, wasting money and time.