Effective employee communication is crucial when large companies report losing $62 million dollars and smaller companies $420,000 each year due to workplace communication barriers.
Not only does improving communication within a company provide a business with increased profitability but it can also save a large amount of time spent on clarification of tasks and responsibilities due to miscommunication.
What is Effective Employee Communication in the Workplace?
Workplace communication is the transfer of information that occurs within a business. Effective employee communication occurs when information is sent and received accurately. Effective communication not only boosts employee engagement and employee experience but also bottom-line profitability.
Two-way communication is one of many effective communication strategies that is essential to establishing a company culture of respect. Follow-up questions can encourage two-way communication and decrease unnecessary miscommunication.
Make sure your communication strategy clearly outlines the importance of letting employees finish their statements without interruptions, encourages active listening, and is mindful of tone. Establishing a company culture centered around positive communication is important to both employee engagement and will help keep employees satisfied.
Team member relationships can be built upon through team building activities that will improve employee experience within your organization.
Employee communication can go beyond strictly business communication when each team member is given the opportunity to discuss their lives and personalities outside of the workplace.
A business's human resource department is crucial to help employee communication including establishing company communication guidelines and standards. Businesses should analyze the following factors to optimize effective workplace communication including-
- Established communication strategy or communication program
- Employee engagement levels
- Employee experience
- Communication help from human resource department
- New hire communication best practice
- Social medium proficiency
- Analysis of employee engagement survey feedback
- Company culture
- Team member compatibility
- Communication tool and communication channel availabilities
Make sure to let every employee feel heard and valued by using any communication tool available including an engagement survey administered regularly to your employees.
Understanding employee communication does not stop at your human resource department but should include every department within an organization.
Thankfully there are many best practice techniques for proper communication that every effective employee will bring to the workplace. For new hire employees or employees who need improved communication skills, there are many proactive steps to practice, including-
- Two-way communication regardless of the communication channel used
- Face to face communication whenever possible
- Providing honest feedback via employee engagement survey
- Following any human resource communication strategy
- Using best practice for external and internal communication
- Providing new hire communication training sessions
How to Effectively Communicate with Employees
Communication is a pillar of strong leadership and essential for best practice development and bottom-line profitability. However, 91% of employees believe their leaders effectively lack communication skills. To improve this, it's best to consider communication strategies that will improve overall workplace connectedness.
When developing a communication strategy consider the following tips-
1. Clarity- The most effective communication is transparent, consistent, and polite. Avoid technical business communication jargon whenever possible.
2. Training- Make sure your human resource department provides proper communication training. Go beyond basic new hire training, even an effective employee can benefit from any effort to improve employee communications.
3. Inclusivity- Effective communication is conscious of diversity and the different ways that employees communicate. Mindfulness about identity differences helps every employee feel safe and validated.
4. Channels- Various communication channel utilization will help repeat important messages to your workforce. Many people benefit from hearing a message multiple times and will be more likely to remember something that they hear through various communication channel techniques.
Whenever you use more than one communication channel make sure to keep information uniform to avoid misunderstandings and misinformation.
5. Accountability- Make sure that actions and words match up to promote a company culture of transparency. The effectiveness of workplace communication is decreased when your employees do not trust internal communication information.
6. Methods- Whenever possible provide opportunities for face to face communication in person. Text conversations and even phone calls can increase miscommunications because they do not include important cues like body language and eye contact.
7. Consistency- Schedule communication strategy opportunities on the company calendar, provide engagement survey opportunities, and always look for ways to help employee communication.
8. Promote- Provide regular opportunities for employee communication to occur. Two-way communication including face to face communication is essential to increasing team member compatibility and overall employee engagement levels.
Providing a regular engagement survey and suggestion boxes can help more timid employees to express themselves and their needs. Make sure employees are provided various social media and communication channel access.
9. Quantify- Provide clear objectives and make sure to consistently measure communication strategy effectiveness. An employee engagement survey is a great communication tool for analyzing and implementing workplace communication improvements.
Effective employee communication will result in improved company culture and best practice communication techniques. Help each employee feel validated and important by developing a communication strategy that helps every employee understand their responsibilities and company role.
Not only is effective employee communication important to individual employee engagement and employee experience but it is absolutely essential to longevity and continued bottom-line profitability