This cannot be emphasized enough; workplace communication is vital for driving the company to exceptional performance levels. It contributes to success in various ways that are not limited to; exchange of ideas, instilling and nurturing a sense of belonging, increasing engagement, building teams, and keeping employees in loop of organizational objectives.
Explained below are some of the workplace challenges, the effects, and the resolution tactics.
- Lack of communication
Do you communicate with your team?
It is one thing to believe that communication is an essential fabric that keeps organizational operations together and another one to practice. Communication can take many forms: approvals, instructions, updates, directives, and feedback. Lack of communication makes seemingly important objectives, and pursuits appear meaningless. In consequence, it stifles productivity and ignites frustration, thus giving employees every reason to seek opportunities elsewhere.
- Late communication
The speed of communication is as crucial as its presence. When delayed, the team many arrive at a conclusion mentioned in the previous tackle; that the pursuit of a particular objective is not as important. Late communication is common when teams are working remotely or are in different time zones. The most effective solution in this case is using collaboration tools and having an alternative means of communication in case of time-sensitive matters.
- Use of ambiguous terminologies
As the adage goes, everyone is entitled to his or her interpretation. However, when skewed interpretations appear, divergent paths may be formed. Although multiple interpretations can give new insights and perspectives, on the flip side, they may lead the organization far from their ultimate objectives. These perception differences are often associated with an employee’s knowledge with the topic at hand and their expectations at the time. They may be unplanned, but leaders have the mandate of correcting and ensuring that the team is working towards a common objective. This can be corrected by seeking feedback and monitoring operations.
- Too many breakdowns
How do you provide information? Do you break it down or avail it as a whole? Sending bits of information can lead to unintended delays if your employees realize that the suggested method of work differs from what they have done. In as much as simplifying is recommended, provide projects details wholly for the team to know what they are aiming for and move towards the same direction.
- Using multiple communication channels
How many communication channels do you use in the workplace? It is no doubt that many workplaces communicate via email, memos on notice boards, real-time chatting platforms like Slack, and so much more. If you have more than one communication, how do you determine which is the right one for a particular message? How do you ensure that each individual in the target group receives the news and on time? Having multiple communication platforms is important and almost inevitable in some working centers. The downside of this is that essential details may be scattered in the platforms making it hard for the people to follow up. If they have to refer back, they may give up the search and resort to their own form of thinking. Also, without proper planning, some questions and assignments may remain unseen, unpacked, and unanswered for hours.
To prevent such disappointments, create a standard communication policy and platform that will, at the very least, ensure that employees get updates within the intended timeframe. Remember, there is no right or wrong way of devising and implementing your communication plans as long as they adhere to your business needs and are contributing positively.
- Conflicting information
This is common when teams are not updating each other or leaders have varying opinions on how work should be done. In the latter, they may not in bad terms, but each has his/her manner of thinking. Conflicting information can fuel differences and cause delays. The solution is to choose a team leader who can listen to the varying opinions, settle on one and share that with the rest of the team.
7. Language barriers
In an organization that accommodates diversity, language differences may manifest either in the entire language or words that have multiple meanings. Nonetheless, organizational plans must continue, but not at the expense of effective communication. For easy time, understand the language differences and craft solutions.
This refers to biased targeting of information by assuming that only a particular group of people should be notified of the changes in the organization. Undoubtedly, every employee has a role to play in the realization of a company’s goals. When delineated, the employees may lose interest in their jobs and lag behind. An effective tackle would be notifying all members about new changes even when their contribution seems trivial.
- One-sided communication
Do you give your employees time or space to comment on core organizational issues? In a recent study, researchers argued that it is communication without feedback is incomplete. In many downward communication channels, employers are denied or rarely get a chance of communicating, which, in a disguised format, demotivates them. Allow your team to participate in decision-making. Their ideas may not be adopted, but the opportunity develops their sense of belonging and enhances scope of understanding of a particular matter.
- Excessive use of jargon
Every profession has its language. It helps acquainted individuals to restrict communication in a particular group and on particular matters. However, when experts use complex terminologies to the extent of singling out others, they risk shutting out great talent. To resolve, familiarize yourself with the members’ expertise with the lingo and align the language accordingly. If the technical language is inevitable, use it moderately to keep everyone in the loop.
- Poor presentation
For a message to be understood as one intended, the written, visual, verbal, and non-verbal aspects should be in synch.