Tips to Communicate Effectively in the Workplace
An effective workplace is built around good communication. There are a plethora of books which cover all the key elements of effective communication. In fact, many companies now invest in communication courses for their employees whereby the art of effective written and verbal communication are covered. Without great communication, misunderstandings can arise and progress is less efficient. Fortunately, there are several small adjustments you can make to your everyday life that can streamline your communication skills.
These tips will help you streamline your working life.
Start simply by thanking your coworkers. This could be for listening during a meeting, for finishing a task promptly or for doing you a favour. Appreciation goes a long way in the workplace and in most cases employees are not appreciated enough for their efforts. A lack of appreciation can lead to employees becoming despondent and unmotivated. This ultimately can lead to decreased levels of productivity which adversely affect the company bottom line.
Focus on the Problem, not the Person
If you come to loggerheads with a colleague over an issue, step back and rephrase the conflict without making it personal. This is especially helpful during business negotiations, creating a united front moving forwards. It may also be useful to get a colleague to serve as a mediator to help diffuse any tensions that may have arisen between two employees.
Don’t Take Criticism Personally
It can be a downer to receive negative feedback, but these are opportunities for self-improvement. One way to address constructive criticism is to pretend it’s about someone else and create a strategy for future approaches to that problem. Then follow those steps yourself. No one likes to receive criticism, but it is those who are able to take the criticism on board and learn from it that become better-rounded employees.
Speak with a clear voice and at a comfortable pace. Eye-contact creates a connection with the person you are talking to and indicates your full attention is on them. Talking too fast or slow can be confusing for listeners, as is mumbling.
If you want to identify your personal speaking habits, you can record yourself giving a presentation (make sure everyone knows you are recording). Listening to yourself is the most effective way of identifying which parts of your speech need adjusting for excellent articulation.
Make a List
In situations that require gathering complicated details, for example, before negotiating a new contract or finding an insurance quote, create a list with the information you will need. These can now be created on cloud servers and shared with everyone required who can update them in real-time.
Find the Source of Misunderstandings
When a misunderstanding occurs, progress slows down. Fixing a misunderstanding is one thing, but to avoid future frustration, try to locate why it occurred. Pinpointing the source can prevent the same mix-up in the future.
Emails Are For Information
Throughout history, letters have been misinterpreted. Two people can read the same email and one can interpret light humour as nasty sarcasm. To avoid these sorts of potential upsets, keep emails for information, checklists, and schedules.
Emails are Forever
Emails get two points because they are digital representations of you. Every single email you send on your work account is probably stored in the company hard drive and IT can find it at any point. Employee monitoring protects the company’s interests, even emails that you have deleted can be recovered from the company server. Proofread every email before you send it to ensure it is within company guidelines and something that couldn’t get you in trouble if it was read by HR.
Moreover, if you as an employee are encountering difficulties with a colleague, always make sure you track your dispute with them in emails. This way, if you ever get taken to an employment tribunal you will have a clear record of exactly what occured between you and your colleague.
Overall, employees have a common goal in mind which is the continuing productivity of their company. Good communication practices build effective teams and harmonious working environments. Which of these strategies to communicate effectively would benefit your workplace?