Updated: Nov 16, 2020
Communication is the driving force that touches every aspect of a business. Leaders use communication to build culture, empower teams, meet deadlines, and increase productivity. Effective communication is found in every healthy environment and is vital to conflict management in the workplace. And the lack of communication, well, it can be found at the root of every bud of frustration and burnout.
It's proven that businesses with effective communication have higher employee retention rates. If you have outstanding employees and want to keep them, focusing on creating effective communication is well worth the effort.
A 2017 Employee Benefit News study found that it costs a third of an employee’s annual salary to find a suitable replacement, which leads the to the conclusion that employee turnover not only affects a company's culture, but also the bottom line.
5 Tips to Improve Communication in YOUR Business
Be intentional Whether you know it or not, you are creating culture with your communication, or, the lack thereof. Your verbal and non-verbal communication carries weight in your environment and helps create the culture of your business, so be intentional and build the culture you want for your business.
Ask for feedback Feedback is an important aspect of growth and enables us to understand how we are affecting our environment and those around us. Create “feedback loops” in your workplace and ensure communication is traveling up and down the hierarchical ladder. Asking for feedback will increase employee engagement and communicates their voice is valued.
Listen to learn One goal of listening is to seek to understand people and their situations. Remind yourself of this truth and resist the urge to formulate a response while listening. Conflict resolution can sometimes be found by just asking and listening to your employees, it lets them know you value their thoughts and emotions.
Understand barriers Understand barriers to communication within yourself and in others and work to resolve them. How have you reacted in the past when someone gave you feedback? Your reaction, or lack thereof, has the potential to drive or hinder behavior in those around you.
Repeat back By repeating back what someone has said to you, you convey you’ve understood them and that you value what they have to say. Try repeating back actual words they have used and see the relief they experience when they feel heard.