The quality and consistency in your internal communications has the potential to transform your business. You will see a better collaboration between your team members and a greater level of productivity if you have more fluid and clear interactions. You could lose your whole operation if you make mistakes in timing, phrasing, or clarity.
So what steps can be taken to improve the internal communication of your team?
Troubleshooting Possible Problems
It is important to first diagnose any problems.
Do you notice anything that is causing problems in your business? Could it be communication inefficiency? Is there an identifiable metric that has fallen because of a specific communication problem? If so, then this is your chance for specific fixes to any problem.
A possible indicator that customer churn has increased is that customer service agents have not been clear about their responsibilities.
It may be possible to resolve the issue by revising your SOPs and team meeting protocols as well as other internal communications of customer service departments.
Establish Strong Leaders
People mimic their leaders’ style and approach, regardless of whether it is conscious, unconscious or a mixture of both.
In order to promote effective communication, it’s important to establish strong leadership within your organization. Your employees will follow your example if your leaders communicate clearly and consistently.
There are two ways to get help.
Effective communicators are important when it comes to promoting and hiring leaders. People who are clear and concise communicate better than those who don’t.
Second, your existing leaders can be trained and educated more. You can train and practice communication skills, as well as take part in seminars.
Multiple communication channels can be created (and used appropriately).
Different communication channels can be used. Different communication channels are different and have different strengths and limitations. They can also be used in different contexts and communicate better.
All these tools should be available to your employees so they can use them all effectively. This will make your internal communications stronger.
Digital signage software can be used to display any type of visual or text. It can also rotate through various messages. Your screens can display constant reminders and advisements, current conditions, instructions, up-to-date information, and other useful information throughout your office. It’s a great way to make sure everyone is on the same page.
Email communication is the most used form of workplace communication. Because it is permanent, immediate, and written, it is very popular. Email is not the best platform to have an ongoing dialog or for expressing complex ideas.
Chat platforms can make it simple to ask quick questions or have a friendly conversation, but they can also become distracting. It is not something we want to do all the time, but chats can be a powerful communication tool if used properly.
You can use video and phone conferences to coordinate many people and hold complex discussions. Unfortunately, they can be very time-consuming and can easily go off track if there is too many participants. They should only be used sparingly, and with intent.
Social media plays an important part in any internal communications strategy. If it is used correctly, it can strengthen your employees’ relationships and allow you to reach out in an informal way.
Develop consistent workflows for task and project management
How is it possible to communicate information about both high-level project and low-level tasks between people?
Do you have a template to help describe a project? Who is responsible for communicating the details of a particular project? What information should an employee provide about the task completed by an employee when they complete it?
If there aren’t clear protocols and workflows for project and task management, chaos will soon ensue. Because each member brings their own style to the group, so it’s important to establish clear guidelines.
Strive to establish a consistent process everyone can follow.
Train and Onboard Your New Hires
Employees need to be trained upon their onboarding.
Set expectations for how and when they communicate. Also, consider offering additional education or training to new hires who are having trouble communicating.
Utilize Team-Building Events
A great way to strengthen communication skills between your employees is team-building events
The event usually involves employees being assigned a collaborative or competitive challenge. This requires them to communicate well with one another in order to win. It is an excellent communication method that can reveal weaknesses. It allows employees to bond with one another and learn more about each other.
Communicate with more visual forms
It is always beneficial to master written language, but most people prefer visually-based communication.
Visual communication is more efficient, easier to comprehend, and most importantly, more intuitive. Visualizing data as a graph is a lot easier than just hearing someone rattle off numbers.
Visual communication is a great way to improve workplace communications. Your points can be communicated using images, diagrams and even facial expressions.
Search for Teaching and Coaching Opportunities
You may not have all your employees who are strong communicators. That’s fine.
With the right coaching, practice and support, everyone can become a better communicator. Take the time to coach and teach your team members when they fall behind or struggle with communication. What specifically is the person doing wrong? What are the steps they can take to make it right?
Recognize and acknowledge your own strengths and weaknesses
Also, it’s important to realize that communication skills are not universally perfect. Different people communicate in their own ways, which is perfectly okay.
One who knows the written language well might struggle in active conversation. On the other hand, someone who is fluent, articulate, and skilled at composing coherent emails might do fine.
Communicating leaders have to be sensitive to the strengths and weaknesses of each individual and offer solutions. Assist people to use their communication skills to the maximum extent possible. Also, help them to understand how to compensate.
Don’t overwhelm Your Employees
It is important to avoid excessive work or overloading employees.
This guide has many tips and tools that you can employ to improve communication skills in your employees. You can’t force them to communicate and overwhelm them with training.
You can improve your internal communication over time. So it’s best to take small steps and use a more flexible, patient approach.
Take the time to get feedback from your employees at all levels and your team leaders.
How satisfied are they with their internal communications? What internal communications are often the source of complaints? This way you can get a better idea of the internal communications “pulse”, and can be much more targeted in your communication improvements strategy.
With these strategies and patience, you can expect steady improvements in clarity and efficiency in your internal team communications. You will see improvements in your internal communication once you have established a solid foundation. A company culture that values communication will instil good communication habits. This makes it easier to maintain consistency and hire new members.
It doesn’t mean you have to give up on internal communications. However, you can take a moment for yourself to celebrate the win.