Communication is the foundation of every single relationship you have in your personal life; it's no different in business. Without effective communication, there can be misunderstandings, problems and conflicts among your staff, your clients and everyone else you come into contact with. Poor communication can make effective delegation, productivity and an enjoyable work environment virtually impossible.
Here are a few issues that you may want to address:
1. Failure to Listen.
The inability to listen is a huge problem. Often you will see co-workers interrupting speakers or planning what they will say next instead of effectively listening. and still others just forget to pay attention, they are too distracted or have a short attention span. Obviously these all reflect on their failure to listen.
To resolve this stress the need to listen before you start a discussion. Focus on content of discussion and make notes later. Maintain eye contact to facilitate understanding. Turning off cell phones, email, or even closing an office door can help ensure the speaker has your full attention.
2. Culture Differences.
The office has become a melting pot stocked with people of diverse backgrounds and cultural customs. People tend to “hang" with others familiar to their culture or habits. When these individual groups assemble, managers face the challenge of team communications vs small group dynamics.
People often cling to “like-minded" individuals or want to share space with others in their culture. Try to mix them together and make sure that during brainstorming sessions, everyone is contributing—even if you have to walk the floor to listen. If someone is reticent, ask them for feedback. The most important thing however, is to repeat back what you’ve heard. Make sure that your understanding is clear. By reframing your understanding, it allows others to know you are listening and fosters better communication.
3. Ask good Questions
When you want to persuade someone, questions can be more powerful than statements. The reason: you engage another person more strongly. You get him or her thinking about the ideal answer – and the steps necessary to get there.
4. Gender Bias
The battle over which gender makes the best leader is taking the focus away from the real issue. Sometimes workers only want to relate to people of the same gender.
Don’t wait for an invitation to speak. Speak loudly and make sure your viewpoints are expressed; establish eye contact, and own your space. Never issue disclaimers, engage in demeaning yourself—and avoid unwarranted apologies.
Effective communication can be important to your business success. It may be worthwhile taking the time to reinforce practices in your organization to ensure improved results.
I hope these suggestions help. Please let me have your thoughts. firstname.lastname@example.org