Employee Communication Skills – Communication is the transfer of ideas, information, thoughts and one’s belief from one person to another. There are various ways of communication: oral, written, visual and non-verbal. Employee Communication skills are the life-line of a person’s life. Most interviews are based on how efficiently a candidate communicates. There are various factors that help an Employee communicate effectively and efficiently.
Pitching a new idea or presenting a financial analysis or designing a strategic plan you’re your company’s management team requires a high level of excellence of communication skills that can never go out of style and in fact, they’re always highly demanded.
In the words of one US high-tech recruiter, “Communication is KEY. You can have all the financial tools, but if you can’t communicate your point clearly, none of it will matter.”
The message or information shared inside the organisation should be same with everyone, so that people of the organization can work together towards the same goal. The communication process inside the workplace has to be healthy and smooth. It’s very important to realize the importance of the message that is being passed on from the one level to other level of management. Message distortion is one of the common issues that are faced by organizations. Therefore, it’s essential to make the employees realize that intra-office communication has to be specific and undistorted.
The employees should be allowed and encouraged open and informal communication at different hierarchical levels so that they have their morale and confidence boosted to express their ideas and opinions without any fear of being judged or discouraged. With this, it’s also important to make sure that you choose correct medium to communicate, be it via email, telephone, or social media, etc.
Productivity of the workplace highly depends on how effectively the employees communicate, which further depends on the environment of the organization that lets them communicate professionally as well as freely. There are various factors that help an employee communicates effectively and efficiently.
10 Important Factors that can Sharpen Employee Communication Skills
Personality Development and Training Programs
Personality constitutes to the inner as well as outer traits and qualities of an individual. Employee Communication is one of the major parts of Personality. Personality development programs enhance the confidence and communication levels of an individual. Therefore, By organising personality development programs on a regular basis, changes in the monotonous environment it will improve the Employee Communication Skills. The organization should encourage such programs involving people from different levels. This helps the employees to know the viewpoints, ideologies, and thought processes of people across the organization. Further, this helps the organization enjoy smooth flow of informal employee communication in the organization.
No one becomes a better communicator without first putting in the effort to develop advanced employee communication skills. Becoming better requires focusing on your blind spots and finding someone who can help you to improve them. Begin by asking yourself critical questions. Even with excellent training, if you don’t practice what you’ve learned, you’ve done yourself a serious disservice. Allocate time to practice the employee communication skills that will help you to become competitive and add value.
Don’t cut back on your communication skills. Instead practice because by practicing you assure that your efforts will show results sooner than later. This also builds the confidence and momentum that you need to advance on your long-term career goals. Determine how you can use interactive sessions like meetings, brainstorming sessions, negotiations, and presentations to practice and finally, showcase your talent and excellence to seal to deal.
Body Language and Tone
Communication is both verbal and non-verbal. Words and speech are as important as body language in the process of communication. Body Language is the kind of non-verbal communication that takes into consideration the gestures, postures, expressions, and movements of different parts of the body and face. Body language communicates much before the words you are about to speak. Crossed arms and legs indicate your closed personality and non-participative nature in the communication process. Usage of phone, not looking into the eyes of the person communicating to you reflects your disinterest in communication session going on.
Tone is as important as body language. The intonation in the voice has the beautiful quality to express your real emotion towards a situation. The emphasis on correct words, change of voice in a specific situation, etc. play a vital role in the process of employee communication. Email and social media does not serve the purpose as it can be difficult to identify the tone. You might be saying it just as a joke, but it might come off as pushy or annoy, and could cause an unintended reaction from the person you are communicating with. Make sure your language is clear and soft, and if you are angry, take few minutes out to cool down before you communicate. It is better to meet someone in person, rather than communicating behind the screen.
Build Rapport and Trust
The relationship between employer and employee, superior and subordinate, boss and team member is based on a common level of trust. It’s crucial to build rapport between the team leader and team members and also between the members. Communication is the life-blood of any organization and employees are the responsible for running the organization with efficiency and efficacy. Therefore, employee communication process between employees has to be honest, open and straight-forward.
The employees communicate between each other, and this smooth and coercive flow of communication leads to achieve the common objective of the organization. Employee Communication skills can be enhanced by building rapport between the employees. This can be done by conducting brainstorming sessions, open meetings, etc.
Confidence is the Key
A confident employee is an invaluable and intangible asset for an organization. Confidence is good, however over-confidence can be disastrous. There is a very thin line between confidence and over-confidence. It’s important for the employees to be confident and motivated at all times. Confidence and optimism are inter-related, and this leads to generating of fresh ideas and less chaos.
“Optimism is the faith that leads to achievement. Nothing can be done without hope and confidence.” —Helen Keller
It is the organization’s responsibility to encourage employees’ confidence and motivation by allowing them to speak out on what and how they feel, and their opinions and ideas towards the planning and progress of an organization.
Time plays a key role in an organization. If the decisions of an organization are not taken on the right time by the right people based on the right information, the organization will not thrive in the long run. The employees should be given ample time to prepare and plan for the short and long-term goals in order to achieve the main objective of the organization.
The employee communication skills can be enhanced with time, based on the requirements and needs of the organization. The ever-changing environment of the organization and its adaptability by the employees keeps them going. Time changes the work culture, environment and objectives of the company. The flexibility and dynamic personality of the employees to adapt to these changes on a timely basis improves the organization and its working.
Team building exercises lead to clarity of thoughts and speech
The employees should feel that the organization cares about them. This is done by clear flow of communication. The clarity and balance between thoughts and speech is fundamental. You should be able to think and speak clearly. With this, it’s also important to speak what you think with proper clarity. The employees run the organization. It is their ideas and creative opinions that lead to building an organization’s position in the market.
It is the work culture of the organization, and superiors’ responsibility that let the employees maintain a proper balance in their thought and speech. The organizations hire employees with excellent employee communication skills rather than with only degrees and certificates. If an employee is capable to deliver thoughts and ideas with clear, concise and crisp understanding, it is considered to be the best.
Liberty to maintain Work and Life Balance
A happy employee is the one who yields maximum results. If an employee is able to maintain equilibrium between his work and home, he/she will be able to deliver best results.
The employees should not be burdened with a lot of work that they take the baggage to their home and not able to spend the time after work or weekends with their family completely. Their emotional absence will affect their mental stability and personal relations adversely. The deadlines and assignments should be divided among the team members in a way that every employee participates in the task and no employee is burdened with the responsibility of the whole task alone.
Eliminate assumptions and distractions and judgements
Often, people stereotype and assume each other’s personality and traits, and even the worst intentions based on their own perceptions, rather than asking how they can reach the middle-point. Each person thinks that it’s the other person’s problem when the responsibility is actually mutual. In case of any help needed, or any doubt, it is important to ask, rather than just assuming or concluding.
Workplace is busy, and usually, something or someone is fighting for your attention and time. However, it sometimes becomes necessary to avoid doing other tasks when you are in a conversation with someone. Concentrate on the person who is talking to you and what they’re saying and delivering so that you completely understand what their needs are and what they expect from you.
Healthy and Noise-free Environment
Communication is often overlooked in the workplace. Without communication, employees feel unappreciated and de-motivated, which further leads to frustration and discouragement. Therefore, it is important for an employer to realize how important employee communication actually is and begin nurturing it, so as to create a positive and healthy work environment. As a result, this will ensure that the employees are happy and encouraged, which in turn will make the organization more productive, result-oriented, and increase the bottom line.
“Do not check your soul at the door when you cross the threshold of your workplace. Whether you are a custodian or a CEO practice work as sacred art. Respect comes not from the work you do, but the way you do your work.” Mary Manin Morrissey
Intra-organization communication plays a vital role. If the employees enjoy the liberty to express their opinions and ideology without the fear of being judged or viewed nonsensical, they will be able to give their best. The organization encouraging healthy environment fosters the growth of employees and organization itself by regular and participative communication practice.
Listen and Paraphrase
People often avoid listening as a critical component of employee communication, but it is. The ability to take in others’ ideas, analyze them, and then reciprocate is, indeed, a skill. It not only establishes trust and develops rapport, but also helps you become a better and more charismatic communicator.
Active listening is significant to enhance employee communication skills as it helps you to participate in the conversation and reflect your commitment to the speaker’s demands. Once this happens, the listener reciprocates, thus making it a two-way process. This exchange of ideas, thoughts, or information is rooted in the need to connect and get results. This leads an understanding level, thus generating an excellent communicator.
As you listen to the employee or co-worker, repeat or paraphrase the sentence, so that the communicator knows if you have understood the message as it has been sent. The message should be perceived exactly it’s been sent by the sender. Perception plays a vital role. It is necessary to understand the message with the same emotion as it is sent. The sender and receiver need to be at the same level of understanding and mental status to perceive the message to achieve best results.
Effective communication is a skill that needs continuous practice. Observe how others respond to your communication, this gives you an idea on your areas for improvement. One of the most critical skills for employees looking for professional growth is communication. No matter what the topic of conversation, it should be positive and healthy. Remember, one will always catch more flies with honey than vinegar. Thus, encouraging communication among employees creates a positive workplace environment. The above mentioned points should be practiced in an organization to enhance employee communication skills in order to get best results. Remember, communication is the life-blood for any organization.
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