What someone says and what they mean don’t always align perfectly. This is bad news for business leaders and ambitious professionals. Ambiguity and confusion can contribute to all sorts of problems in the workplace. Misunderstandings and miscommunications alone can cause projects to be delayed or scrapped, reduced revenue, and fewer positive outcomes for customers. It may sound simple, but just eliminating communication breakdowns can significantly improve how a small business operates. Thankfully, we’ll explain how you can do that here:
Keep Your Eyes on the Prize
Have you ever worked on a project without fully understanding its purpose? If so, then you know just how difficult it is to perform at your best when you don’t know how to achieve a positive result. Given that fact, business leaders would do well to apply concepts like the path goal theory to their corporate training routine. Doing this involves clearly outlining the goals your company wants to reach, while also speaking to employees about how to accomplish them on a practical level. Bottom line: the more educated your staff is, the easier it will be to ensure smooth communication between all parties.
No one likes to repeat themselves. After all, it can be tiring –– if not downright annoying –– to go over important procedures again and again. Yet, sometimes professionals need to follow up with their team members to allow a message to really sink in. If, for instance, you’re waiting on a report from a team member, then don’t hesitate to follow up with them in a polite fashion. It never hurts to touch base with a coworker from time to time either.
Hold Better Meetings
Can meetings help people get to know each other and boost collaboration? Sure! Can they also prove to be a waste of time? Unfortunately, yes. Business leaders can hold better meetings, in large part, by streamlining them. Hold shorter, more compact meetings that allow team members to discuss their most pressing issues in a group setting. Everything else is just fluff.
Say it Face to Face
Have something really important that you need to tell a coworker? Then don’t send them a text message or an email. Instead, sit down and speak with them about the issue. Written communication is expedient, but it’s also flawed. It can be difficult to impart or interpret tone or emotion from a written message. Don’t risk a misunderstanding if you have something essential to say.
Think Before You Speak
Though it only takes a minute, simply stopping to think before you speak your mind can cut down on so many unneeded and/or erroneous comments in the workplace. Proofread your emails and only speak to your team members when you’re certain in your message. Otherwise, you could end up causing more harm than good!