Are you seeing work from your employees that is delayed or subpar? Are there frequent misunderstandings in your office and is your culture suffering? You can start to fix all of these problems by improving communication at work.
In this article, we’ll give you 13 ways you can improve communication in your office.
Fixing Workplace Communication: 13 Company Culture Ideas
There are several ways to improve your office culture, but our suggestions can be divided into three topics: your company’s culture, functionality, and technology.
It’s no secret— culture is everything when it comes to business success these days. Applying these suggestions can both improve your culture and your communication.
1. Institute an open door policy
Don’t make employees feel like they have to schedule an appointment with you if they have something they want to talk about. Having a well-known open door policy can ensure that if there are problems, your employees will let you know.
2. Hold check-ins
Whether you check-in monthly, weekly, or even daily, checking in will help keep everyone on the same page. You can find out what your employees are working on, what struggles they’re facing, and what kind of help or resources they need to take care of their responsibilities.
3. Give everyone a break once in a while
Employees who love their job and love their coworkers are much more likely to openly communicate with those around them. Breaks are the perfect setting for employee bonding and they’ll increase engagement back in the office as well. Take a field trip, plan an overnight retreat, or attend a conference together.
4. Emphasize your company values
Company values are essentially broad goals that everyone in the company will have in common. If everyone is on the same page when it comes to why they’re doing what they’re doing, they’ll be able to communicate better.
5. Listen to employee concerns
This can be instituted with a suggestion box, regular anonymous surveys, or one-on-one meetings. Whatever you decide to do, make sure you’re transparent. Hubspot is a great example of this. They post all employee concerns and the responses to those concerns in a location that’s easily accessible to all employees. That way, they’re held responsible for their response to employee concerns.
6. Discover employee preferences
Find out how each employee you manage likes to receive information. Maybe a quick face-to-face chat is best for some, while hashing out all of the details over email is best for others. Once you know, you can make sure they’re receiving the info they need the way they will process it the best.
7. Give feedback
Employees can’t improve if you don’t tell them what they need to work on. Telling them will allow them to get better and will prevent you from becoming frustrated with them. Plus, they’ll know that the lines of communication are open.
Communication is most improved when there’s groundwork in place to make information and people easily accessible. Here’s a few suggestions on how to improve your office’s functionality.
8. Create an internal language
We’re not suggesting that you create the next Klingon; most businesses already have jargon specific to the kind of work they do. Make sure these terms are defined and everyone understands them. This will speed up your communication.
9. Send out an internal newsletter.
Emailing out a newsletter regularly will keep your employees up-to-date on what’s going on in other parts of the company. Another way to do this is to create an internal company blog. This allows employees easy access to this information; they won’t have to search for it in their inbox.
10. Rearrange the office.
Many offices use cubicles to give everyone their own space to focus on their work. While this does have benefits, other companies have resorted to using open tables and work stations to improve employee collaboration and communication.
Technology has revolutionized the workplace and it’s a constantly evolving aspect of your workplace communication. Take a look at what you’re currently using and whether or not that’s working for your company. Here are a few of our favorites:
11. Stop using email for instant communication
There are so many options for quick virtual conversations at work that are better than email. It’s easier to follow a conversation involving multiple people using a tool like Facebook for Work or Slack. Saying goodbye to email can really speed up your work conversations.
12. Use a file sharing system to keep everything in one place
Keeping all of your company’s files in an easily accessible place will speed up your workflow and improve internal communication. Internal servers are great, but consider using a program like Dropbox or Google Drive to allow remote workers to have easy access as well.
13. Use a task management system
To ensure that instructions and tasks are clear, make use of a task management system. A good one will allow you to assign tasks to people, include specific instructions, and set due dates. The expectations will be clear and communication will be improved.
Whether there are set processes that need to be followed or an open collaboration between employees, communication is essential.