“Communication can’t always follow the top-down model. With the fluidity of information in business today, leaders need to be masterful listeners; they need to be able to receive as well as send”
— Joseph L. Badaracco, Harvard Ethics Professor and Author
Business communication refers to the process of conveying information between persons within an organisation, customers of an organisation and other businesses that are often in relation with said organisation. Effective business communication is reflected in how businesses are managed. It is shown in how management communicates with employees and importantly, how employees communicate with the business customers. A study conducted on businesses in the United States showed that organisations were losing an estimated $1.2 trillion annually to poor communication practices. Growing businesses who are looking for ways to plug loss channels should actively look towards communication related losses.
The study also showed that organisations were spending more time on communication related activities. Time spent on communications was up by 9% however this did not translate to more effective communication as communication effectiveness reduced by 12%. At Mosron we believe that an upskilling in communication can fetch results needed in terms of productivity and reduce the time spent in getting tasks done. Employees will spend less time communicating with each other when they feel confident with their communication skill without having to worry about the tone and clarity of the message being sent.
For businesses to ensure that the productivity of their employees is well maximised they should look to improve the communication skill of their employees to go beyond the skill needed to pass hiring processes. They should possess a skill level needed to collaborate effectively with their teammates, managers, and the customers of the business. Organisations need to encourage an awareness of the role they play as ambassadors of the organisation and possess enough skill to engage the public effectively.
Our #MosronPeople have looked over a number of communication data and have narrowed down 5 ways constant communication upskilling can improve business performance:
- Employee Relations: We are beginning with internal communications within an organisation and this includes upward communications- subordinate to manager, downward communications- manager to subordinate, lateral communications- peer to peer and interdepartmental communications. Communication plays a vital role in how work is done in organisations. When tasks are not being communicated or interpreted effectively, productivity is slowed down and this has cost implications on the organisation with employees spending two and a half out of eight hours for work clarifying and interpreting information. Improving communication across these lines fosters the collaboration needed to achieve desired results. Employees of an organisation can give clear feedback, assign tasks seamlessly and reduce miscommunication that cause setbacks leading to improved productivity.
- Effective Communication Improves Remote Work: Remote teams struggle with more communication barriers than traditional teams. They spend the most time using written communication like emails and group text hence and are lacking the benefits human interactions provide when compared to their traditional counterparts resulting in misinterpretation of information. Improved communication skills will reduce the time spent communicating between team members as employees are able to speak with more clarity preventing information loss in writing
- Knowledge Sharing Practices: Improved communication enhances collaboration on tasks. Employees can exchange knowledgeable information on tasks that would increase the effectiveness of work. Improving how team members communicate with each other helps in building better relationships among peers, managers and subordinates in the workplace. They come in extra handy when business is done with minimal physical interaction. If your organisation needs to improve worker effectiveness, a cursory look at how teams work would show communication barriers affecting collaboration.
- Employee Advocacy: Employees are important brand ambassadors of an organisation. They are the first point of contact with an organisation’s customers and are crucial to building brand image and perception among the general public. Improving internal communications would positively improve the way your customer feels about your organisation and hence can be better ambassadors of your brand. An effective communication channel will convey management’s decisions and improve the flow of information across teams.
- Improved Customer Satisfaction– Communication is what makes the difference between a customer leaving with a feeling of dissatisfaction and a customer leaving feeling of being well received. Dissatisfied customers are less likely to be good brand ambassadors and pose a risk of a crisis. Customer communications begins at the point where said customer makes their first interaction with your business or organisation. This could be the company’s website, message inbox, communicating with an employee or other ambassadors of the organisations. When employees build better communication skills they are able to identify areas of miscommunication and hence reduce the chances of customer misinformation.
In conclusion, investing in upskilling the workforce of your organisation extends beyond improving soft skills and appearances. Communication upskilling is a strategic business move that drives success and saves cost in time spent on tasks. Effective communication prevents businesses from spending time and money fixing errors that are caused by misinformation. Organisations that seek improved communications have shown improved customer relationships, improved peer relationships and enhanced collaboration as we have highlighted in this article. Embracing communication upskilling is a key driver for unlocking your organisation’s true potential and achieving sustainable growth in today’s fiercely competitive market.