One of the key ingredients for running a successful business is effective communication. In fact, it wouldn’t be an exaggeration to call it one of the pillars that hold an organization together. Unfortunately, however, many organizations struggle with communication problems because of which their business suffers terribly. Studies have shown that poor communication is one of the main reasons why an employee may quit their job. Also, the lack of effective communication directly affects the state of a business as a whole.
What is effective communication and why is it so important?
Simply put, communication refers to the concept of sharing information and exchanging thoughts and ideas. We communicate with each other on a daily basis; it’s a natural human phenomenon. However, not every communication can be called as effective. When we talk about effective communication specifically, it is the exchange of ideas that is done fluently and efficiently. Thoughts and ideas are clearly explained, conversations are healthy, there is a use of positive words and more importantly, accurate information is received in a timely manner. So, a lack of communication at your workplace doesn’t mean that your employees are not talking to each other or there is no exchange of information, it means that the right kind of communication isn’t taking place.
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The biggest indicator of poor communication is your employees’ performance. Also, if you have a high employee turnover rate you might want to evaluate the state of communication at your workplace. In a survey conducted by Dynamic Signal, it was revealed that 70% of employees at workplace feel overwhelmed because of broken communication and around 78% of employees believe that their company should work on improving employee communication and engagement.
Studies have also shown that a lack of effective communication greatly lowers the engagement and productivity levels of the employees. This happens mainly because of two reasons: first, when employees feel that they don’t have a voice and cannot share their ideas and concerns, they feel demotivated and discouraged. Secondly, when broken or defragmented information reaches the employees it creates confusion and misunderstanding.
Improper and poor communication is also one of the biggest contributors to toxic workplace culture. Miscommunication and share of inappropriate information lead to misunderstandings that further create rifts between the employees. Moreover, it also paves way for workplace harassment, bullying, and silos mentality. In the bigger picture, all of this reduces the work quality of your employees that can negatively impact the state and reputation of your business.
What leads to bad communication?
In order to resolve communication issues, it’s first important to find out why the problems are arising in the first place. There are many reasons that lead to poor communication, some of these are:
- There are no effective channels of communication where a seamless exchange of ideas takes place.
- The employees are not provided a platform where they can voice their concerns.
- A toxic and negative workplace culture where employees have no respect for each other.
- Little or no collaborative tasks and projects.
- Absence of or poor execution of team-building strategies.
- There is a huge gap between managers and their employees.
- Important notifications don’t reach the staff on time.
- Lack of employee feedback and appreciation.
- Employee disengagement and low morale.
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How to improve broken communication?
No matter how bad the state of communication at your workplace seems, it can be fixed with the help of the right strategies and tools. Here are 3 strategies to avoid communication breakdown within your organization:
- Use a communication software
There is no doubt that the use of technology and communication software can massively improve the face of your business. In fact, a study by McKinsey has revealed that by using social media and technology, employee productivity increases by 20-25%. However, despite having numerous channels of communication, a lot of companies still struggle with communication issues and breakdown. It may seem counterintuitive, but having too many channels for communication actually leads to more confusion and misunderstandings. Instead of using multiple apps, it’s better to use a single platform where all the employees can interact and connect with others.
A communication and collaboration software like Workspee is an all in one solution where employees can have one on one conversation, group chats and meetings, webinars and video conferences. The newsfeed feature of the software provides a platform where important information and ideas can be shared with the entire staff. Moreover, the managers can notify the employees about important events and deadlines in a timely manner. Communication software ensures a swift and seamless exchange of ideas and provides an avenue for a healthy and positive communication.
- Review and reform your communication strategy regularly
The state of communication at your workplace depends on your communication strategy and how well that strategy is executed. The best way to evaluate your strategies is through employee survey and feedback. When you involve your employees and take their opinions into account, they feel valued and motivated. Ask your employees regularly regarding any communication issues that they are facing and ask for ways by which those issues can be resolved. Constant monitoring and evaluation is important to ensure a strong and positive communication.
The polls and survey feature of Workspee can help you gather reviews and constructive feedback from your employees. Not only does it help in reforming and perfecting your strategies, it also makes employees feel like they are a valuable part of the organization.
- Keep your employees informed and updated
According to a survey conducted by Social Sprout, 4 out of 5 employees claim that their performance will greatly improve if the communication within their workplace improves, while 3 out of 5 employees said that they want their employers to share important news with them. By keeping your employees informed and updated regarding your company’s policies and values you give them an impression that they are important for the organization. When they are asked for opinions and feedback, more importantly when their ideas are implemented, they feel empowered and motivated. The biggest advantage of keeping your employees in a loop is that it opens a path for effective communication.
Effective communication is crucial for a company to thrive and grow. It makes the employees more productive which in turn improves a company’s performance.