The Importance of effective communication in the working environment
Communication is paramount in order for any environment to function. Plants do it, animals do it, and people do it too. Communication is not just the process of sending and receiving messages. It is an intricate way of giving someone else an insight into our views, standpoints, thoughts, culture, knowledge, experience and life. However, in order to ensure that our “messages” are understood by the receiver, we need to overcome or minimize the barriers to communication. Thus ensuring that we communicate to the best of our ability and effectively within the given situation.
What does this have to do with communicating at work?
Internal communication isn’t just an interesting concept with which boring people pre-occupy their time. It is the heart and soul of all businesses. Internal communication isn’t just a “nicely written mission statement” on a corporate page and is not limited to presenting financial results. It is the art of communicating with all individuals in the organisation in order to get tasks done efficiently. In order to buy, sell, launch, develop or market its goods and services, a business needs to first communicate within itself, then to partners and customers.
- A company needs to communicate when brainstorming over new & existing projects.
- A company needs to communicate when launching new ventures.
- A company needs to communicate when developing & implementing new strategies.
The business market is competitive; the world is changing by the minute. Businesses do not only need to appear structured and professional, they need to stay a few steps ahead of their competitors. If all employees clearly understand the message and aim of a new project and react promptly during all stages by means of meetings, feedbacks, etc., then the company can rest assured that its employees will not become frustrated due to lack of info, poor handovers from colleagues and inadequate preparation, which can result in the postponement of a launch date. Through effective communication, employees will receive adequate info in a timely manner, which will enable them to carry out their responsibilities transparently and to take on any needed feedback from the management. In this sense, effective internal communication assists the company not only in meeting its objectives, but also in surpassing them.
I consider Effective Internal Communication in businesses like the air that we breathe.
Employees exhale flexibility, hard work, endurance, knowledge, and passion; in return, they inhale motivation, information, feedback, and expertise from their employers.
According to a statistic published by http://www.realpsychology.com, each individual spends approximately 1,842 hours with his or her colleagues yearly. The Telegraph reported that getting along with colleagues can actually help employees to live longer. Since they are spending eight hours or more every day at work, the social support that employees get from their colleagues assists in creating a positive atmosphere and also helps to motivate them for their duties. Employees with low social support are 2.4 times more likely to die within 20 years than those with higher social support. We all know someone who constantly complains about his or her job. Has anyone ever taken the time to reflect on what these persons complain about?
THOUGHTS SUCH AS: “Tomorrow is Monday already. My colleagues think they can do everything better. People at my company are only looking out for their individual career growth. I feel like a robot; my boss expects me to constantly do overtime as if I had no family life. My company doesn’t care about the needs of normal employees, while management gets to come and go as they please. That is not my responsibility; there is no way I’m going out of my way to help my colleague. No one freely helps me.” Those thoughts and feelings from employees are all imbued with a lack of overall or effective communication. In situations like these, both employers and employees feel misunderstood. Both parties present their side, they often hear what the other party is saying but do not know how to find a way to truly understand from where each person is coming.
My recommendation: companies need to invest more time in combined coaching. Coaching sessions in which employers and employees take part in various joint exercises. When things such as these are done regularly, companies will find themselves on a better path to ensure that what they communicate is openly and well understood.
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