If you were to briefly consider the challenges your company currently faces, what actually stands in your way and prolongs your route to success? Poor internal communication at work is a big obstacle indeed - however, there are effective examples to overcome this. Poor communication skills at work often leads to:
- Isolated departments
- Unsatisfied employees
- Inefficient cooperation
- Delays when it comes to completing tasks and projects
These negative aspects are something you want to avoid in the workplace, and you can do so when you know exactly what can be improved. Therefore, this blog explores five examples to communicate more effectively at work.
- Example One: Transparency is key!
Despite there being many examples for effective communication at work, transparency is the fertile soil out of which improved communication can blossom freely. Open communication encourages different departments to be on the same page within a company and new bridges can be built between departments, colleagues and managers. You can even benefit from gained and increased respect.
Why do you benefit so much from a transparent communication stance?
The answer is simple: You are showing them your trust and that you are willing to give them responsibility. This encourages a company culture in which employees want to work for each other and not let anyone down. A little bit of trust can go a long way.
Furthermore, the focus on transparency helps to prevent suspicion and mistrust in the workplace. Employees hate it when they are not told the truth about important topics. After all, they want to be a vital part of the team.
- Example two: Honesty plays an important role
Did you know that dishonesty and obstruction of the truth triggers a negative body response? Our brains our wired up to release stress hormones when we interpret any form of threat - a lack of trust being one of them. Therefore, we find it harder to make good confident decisions. You can take up a more honest stance however to prevent this.
You shouldn’t shy away from sensitive topics and be honest about any updates and challenges within your company. Furthermore, you can use honesty as a tool to provide constructive feedback and praise. Through this, employees can realize what they’re doing right and identify any room for improvement.
Not every topic should be sugar-coated or ignored - open internal communication structures in the workplace also encourage improved performance. So, aim to communicate honestly with your employees at work - our human psyche doesn’t lie!
- Example three: Eat together during your lunch break
If you are friends with your colleagues, you will find that you can communicate with them more effectively - this is easiest during the lunch break over some good food!
The working day is packed full of tasks and deadlines - sometimes we are simply too busy to make new friends at work. The lunch break is something we often overlook, yet it is a great opportunity to get to know your colleagues and let off some steam together in a more personal style.
Informal friendships also encourage professional relationships - especially between colleagues in different departments. Do you generally find it easier to communicate with a colleague in your department or with someone in another department at work? We suspect it may be the former.
Why do we suspect this? It has to do with the fact that you already know each other, and maybe you are already friends. They are therefore easier to work and communicate with, as the social barriers have been broken down.
This is where the lunch break comes into play and can improve communication in the workplace. Everyone can sit down and enjoy good food together, regardless of department. You can even acquire special online-canteen services such as Smunch for your office, which specializes in lunches for companies.
- Example four: Consider how you communicate
You should also be aware to not to come across as intimidating and patronizing in front of your employees. Your word choice only covers a small part of your communication style. Although an honest approach is advantageous on many levels, be aware to not overdo it.
Focus on your body language and your tone. Try not to come across as angry - instead, breath deeply and stay relaxed. A relaxed body language will make your colleagues feel at ease, as they know that they won’t receive a nasty telling off - in fact, the opposite.
How can you come across as relaxed more effectively?
There are a few handy examples. Your colleagues prefer it when you exhibit a friendly aura. Smiling is effective, as is a generally expressive yet relaxed body language.
Did you know for example, that simply folding your arms is a defensive body function? This can make us feel tense on a subconscious level - this explains why we don’t really know why we suddenly feel uncomfortable. It is a similar case for eye-contact.
Eye-contact is a signal to your colleagues that you are listening and paying attention to them. Communication can hereby flow more effectively at work as your messages come across more easily.
Summarized: A confident yet relaxed communication style can improve communication in the workplace.
- Example five: Listen to your colleagues
It is important to focus on the thoughts and opinions of your colleagues. Nothing is more annoying than speaking to someone, yet they are constantly checking their phone mid-conversation - we naturally zone out. This is similar to what you want to avoid in the workplace, as you will only be properly listened to when you give your colleagues your full focus.
Encourage employee participation in meetings and one-on-ones!
During a conversation or a meeting, make sure that you leave enough sentence gaps as well as coming straight to the point. This gives your employees opportunities to provide their own opinions towards an issue.
This is also beneficial as your colleagues feel that their time and effort is valued. Employees will feel that their opinions are listened to and taken seriously.
Conclusion: An open culture for improved communication in the workplace
Aim to make your company culture as open and transparent as possible. Such companies enjoy limited obstacles in terms of internal communication - and surely you want this for yours too. The most communicative teams spend lunch together and mix with colleagues from other departments. So, try striving for this environment - you will definitely notice the benefits!