How to Improve Team Communication


The success of a business or company often relies on the employees who do the work. Teamwork is usually important in situations that depend on different employees who must unite and bring a product or service to market. Unfortunately, poor communication methods can hamper productivity within a team and may have an adverse affect on the goods or services your company offers. If you are managing a team that needs to improve communication skills, you can take certain steps to ensure better relations.

Require that all employees and managers undergo teamwork and communication training. Hire a professional communicator who can visit your office for a set amount of time. Set aside specific times for different teams of employees to attend the professional communicator's lessons. These lessons may include communication activities, examples and tips that can teach your team how to be more effective communicators.

Set clear goals and objectives. One reason your team may not effectively communicate is because company goals and objectives may be confusing or can be construed in multiple ways. Outlining clear and concise targets will ensure that your team will likely stay on the same page and will work together under a unified understanding of what the company or organization wants.

Encourage a workplace atmosphere that fosters tolerance and patience. Certain team members may feel intimidated to voice their concerns or communicate effectively if they are publicly or privately berated about their work or ideas. These team members may be valuable to the company, but may be detrimental to productive teamwork since they may not feel they can speak up. Be an example to employees by respecting the opinions and ideas of all team members, and demonstrate that everyone's input is valued, regardless of whether it is "right" or "wrong."

Assess your team's communication strengths, and choose and implement the best mode of communication based on your assessment. Various modes of communication can include emailing, Internet messaging, daily meetings or verbal communication throughout the workday. For example, if you've been requiring your team to do more communication through email when it's clear they function better verbally through meetings, hold more meetings and conduct less emailing for important topics.

Encourage employees to give you feedback. This feedback may pinpoint communication problems, such as personal interoffice disputes or an ambivalence toward a certain method of communication, that can allow you to better assess the situation and make appropriate changes. These changes may include shuffling employees to different teams, holding more one-on-one sessions with your team members or printing copies of more streamlined budgets for meetings.

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