In my first video, The Power of Employee Engagement, I discussed the value of creating a culture of engagement. Next I wanted to address communication in the workplace. If you ever wondered how you, as a leader, could increase the level of communication with those who work for you, the following video will offer a few critical tips. Dynamic Signal recently wrote a fantastic article outlining 4 keys to creating more informed employees. The 4 keys are:
1. Honesty is the Best Policy. Keeping the lines of communication open, informing employees and sharing with them why you need what you need from them and keeping them in-the-loop helps to increase compliance, productivity, and active engagement.
2. Be Consistent. Maintaining a schedule for regular meetings is crucial despite last minute fires that crop-up and tempt you to cancel the weekly staff meeting. Even though many attempt to suppress a full-blown eye-roll at the thought of another meeting, it’s imperative to have consistent, regularly, scheduled meetings to keep communication flowing while also ensuring everyone stays on-task.
3. Make it Fun. Great leaders lead by example versus title or position in the organizational structure. Great leaders also engage through a fresh approach. Keep meetings from becoming bland and banal by instilling a bit of humor or mixing it up by adding in a few fun elements. How about a walking meeting… conduct business while walking together, go on a hike, perhaps shoot a video together. Do anything different to keep things juicy. I was recently consulting in-house with a company and just “for fun” we did a few Dubdmash videos with the staff and it not only shifted the entire climate in the office, it increased teamwork, camaraderie and compliance with some of the more serious topics we had to cover in-house regarding structural and operational changes within the company. If you’re feeling tapped out of creative ideas, enlist the creative genius of your employees to help you think of ways to spice up your regularly scheduled meetings. Perhaps set it up on a rotation schedule where each employee is responsible for a unique way of conducting the meeting each week so that the responsibility to keep it “fresh” is not all upon you and you also engage your employees to get more involved and take responsibility for the feel of the meeting.
4. Listen. In the end, we all know the only value there is in communication is how the communication is received. Saying we care about what employees think and offer them a platform to share means absolutely nothing if we don’t acknowledge the input or if there is any fear of negative consequences for sharing. How many of us have ever worked in organizations where a suggestion box was offered but no one ever placed anything into the box for fear that management would retaliate? Asking employees for genuine feedback requires that we, in leadership, encourage this behavior as well as reward and acknowledge the behavior. If we say we want input we must be ready to listen. Every human being is looking to be loved, approved of and appreciated. Excellent leaders inspire through offering this level of acknowledgement. It’s quite easy to achieve, just simply listen.
Communication in the workplace is critical for success and #EmployeeEngagement, via @TamaraMcCleary
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Stay tuned for Part Three in this series: Creating Engaged Employee Advocates, and make sure to check out Part One: The Power of Employee Engagement here.