Staffing Issues

How Management can Encourage better Communication with Employees



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Without clear communication between management and employees, goals, expectations, rewards and incentives will not be understood. As always, communication leads to better and stronger relationships. A manager needs to encourage better communication with, and between, employees.

If you are not a good communicator, let's face it: you are probably not a very effective boss. There appears to be poor communicators out there with high positions, and their subordinates would probably agree: their 'boss' should not be in that role.

So how can management and employees form a better line of communication in order to build a stronger relationship and work force?

Here are 5 important tips on how to effectively communicate and encourage better communication with employees.

1. Be accessible (Open the door)
2. Listen to employees (Shut up and listen)
3. Be consistent (Change is good - wishy-washy is not)
4. Tailor the message (Cater to each individual)
5. Walk the walk (Practice what you preach)

By focusing on these essential tips on how to communicate, the line of 'talk' between management and staff will be clear. Implement these tips right away and improve employee morale, production, and relationships.

1. Be accessible (Open the door)

Regular 1-on-1 sessions with employees are important. An 'open door' policy with your staff will lead to opportunities to communicate and learn more about an employee and other team members. Do not take phone calls, emails, or work on the computer while on a 1-on-1. Your employee needs to know that they have your undivided attention, which means they can build trust and can rely on this time as productive time instead of a waste of time.

2. Listen to employees (Shut up and listen)

Pay attention. An employee may be asking for a solution to a problem. But sometimes a quick solution is not what an employee needs. They just need to express what is on their mind. Most often than not, once they communicate or verbalize it out loud, they may come up with a solution to their problem or crisis at hand. A great leader is a problem solver, but that does not mean a solution should always be provided to the employee, but together with the employee. So listen first, then choose effective communication as you move forward.

3. Be consistent (Change is good - wishy-washy is not)

If employees know what you are all about: they see that your leadership is based on servitude, and that you are consistent with being accessible, you are willing to listen, and you are an effective problem solver; better communication is much easily established. If you contradict or send mixed messages, it is sure to block the future lines of communication that you are trying to establish.

4. Tailor the message (Cater to each individual)

Continue to work on your dialogue and your own personal communication skills. Each employee is different, and if a message needs to come down to one specific individual, it is best to tailor the message to this individual's skills, needs, and understanding. If communication is not clear, then communication is obviously not effective.

5. Walk the Walk (Practice what you preach)

Set a good example by demonstrating professionalism when communicating. This is how employees can emulate professionalism and communication within their team. If they continue to see how professional, how accessible, how consistent you are with others you are communicating with, they will emulate those traits amongst themselves and in turn towards you.

These 5 simple steps can greatly increase the effectiveness of management to employee communication. Once applied, here is no reason why management cannot effectively encourage better communication with employees as well as among each respective peer.

More about this author: Glenn Magas

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