How to use communication effectively in the workplace

Image by mohamed Hassan from Pixabay

By Henry Brown

Communication in the workplace can take many forms, especially these days in the digital environment. However, the traditional methods of communication are as powerful and important as they’ve ever been in the past. Learn how to communicate effectively with your staff, and you will not only improve your company morale, but your productivity will also take a giant leap forward.

Ask guiding questions

A guiding question is one that is open, inquiring, and somewhat leading. It is used when the right answer to a question is in some way obvious but has not been picked up. This situation can occur when training new staff on the job or if one of your employees has failed at a particular task. Your aim as a manager or boss is to encourage your employees to find the answer for themselves without ‘telling’ them. This strategy is far more effective and motivating.

Recognize what’s going well

It’s quite common for management to focus on what’s not working well in the organization and lay on the criticism, but if your employees are always criticized for their work, it can have a fairly damaging effect on morale. A low morale can contribute to poor output. Of course, it’s important to get the message across, but you need to balance the message with some praise as well. In your one to one, begin with what the employee does well and end with the need for improvement.

Listen and empower

As a leader in a firm such as a machine repair company, you need to cultivate a relationship with your employees that is open and trusting. They need to know that they can come to you with any issue, and you will be ready to listen to them and work with them to resolve it. You can achieve this by talking to them often through regular meetings and one to ones. Engage with them genuinely and pay attention to what motivates them in the workplace. Pay extra attention to introverts who tend to conceal them feeling more, and be less vocal.

Understand their perspective

Occasionally you will encounter a problem in a job or with a member of staff, and you will feel frustrated and defensive. As a leader, it’s your responsibility to work with these feelings and make an effort to bridge the gap. The reality is the solution lies somewhere in the middle of things. For a moment, try to see the situation from your employees’ point of view. Think about what motivates them and why this is an issue. It might require some compromise on both sides, but this will be easier to find with a creative approach.

Talk about next steps

Communication in the workplace needs to be open and understanding, but it also needs to be efficient. After all, it is a workplace, and without efficient communication, things won’t get done, and goals won’t be achieved. Have regular one to ones with your staff, perhaps once a week or once a month. Discuss their performance with them and together set some goals to focus on for the next meeting. SMART goals are useful as they are practical and targeted.

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Henry Brown is an online marketing executive. When he isn’t talking shop, he’s roaming the streets of London, uncovering the extra-ordinary in the ordinary.

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