Communication is a powerful tool we use daily during our private life, as well as with colleagues, managers, clients, and customers. To make it effective, your communication strategy needs to align with a comprehensive business strategy you already have. On top of that, communication should be the main mean of achieving the mission and vision of your company.
A communication strategy should include actual ways of achieving your business goals. It should be specific, yet broad enough to allow your employees some autonomy and freedom. Coming up with a strategy may seem challenging, but implementing it and sticking to it is far more difficult! So, how can you develop a strategy that will make your business more effective?
1. Host regular meetings with employees
Are meetings boring? Sometimes, but if you conduct them regularly and with a purpose, they can be extremely fruitful. Holding a meeting just to micro-manage your employees is wrong! With an adequate purpose, meetings need to shine the light on new ideas and help teammates resolve problems they are facing. So, how does that help your strategy?
During the meetings like these, you can truly get to know your employees and their way of thinking. They improve the bond and strengthen the relations between the colleagues. Remember not to fight off constructive conflict as it improves the overall communication in the company.
2. Lead by example
Implementing novelties of any kind is difficult if management doesn’t do it first. For instance, if you want your employees to cut down on the use of the phone during the day, you, as a manager or team leader, need to lead by example and do it first! Follow the rules and strategies you create yourself. In case you don’t, a sense of inequality will take over which will result in dissatisfaction.
Additionally, leading by example is a fantastic way of showing what kind of behavior you want to see without having to be a nagging micro-manager. Follow the rules you impose before you expect your employees to follow them just because you told them to do so!
3. Listen to your employees
Imposing a strategy, you find the best is easy. But have you ever asked your employees what they think about your ideas and strategies? Put your pride aside and survey your employees about the current communication strategy. You’d be surprised how many fantastic ideas and inputs they can give you.
Besides that, truly listening to your employees leads to increased effectiveness. Some may have personal issues, while others think they’d be more productive if they had a chance to work from home. Always remember that communication is a two-way process that requires both parties to participate to make it effective!
4. Use communication tools
When creating a communication strategy, you need to specify the means and channels you’ll use. The communication channel you’re going to use depends on the type of communication you want to achieve. Firstly, determine those you’ll use to communicate with your clients, such as social media and emails, and those you’ll use for your in-house communication. Can’t you just use emails in internal communication as well?
You can, but what are the chances you’ll get a reply when you need it. So, when developing an effective employee communication strategy, consider using the tools tailored for just that! Choose from a wide variety of business communication tools from the market. Opt for those with a greater number of features that will engage your employees and keep them informed during work.
5. Tailor your messages
You probably know that not everyone has the same communication style. Some people are more open, while others might be more sensitive. However, when communicating in business, you need to tailor your messages to be clear, concise, and understandable. On top of that, your messages should be motivating and encouraging to your employees to dig into their work!
How can you achieve that? Always read the messages from your employees’ point of view. Try to have in mind that they need some kind of purpose when adapting to the change. Therefore, your communication strategy should make them feel like they are a part of a bigger picture.
6. Provide training
Developing a communication strategy is challenging, but implementing it brings a new level of difficulty. As a manager, you probably know that without training, a new program, tool, or strategy can’t be successfully implemented. Therefore, when creating a strategy, always include training as one instance.
Training can help your employees see the importance of a communication strategy. Make the most out of your company’s social media and include it in the training. It can help your associates learn how to communicate with clients and customers, as well as, market and brand your business. No matter how many years of experience you may have, attending communication training can always help you learn something new.
As you can see, an effective communication strategy doesn’t include solely a plan, but your team, management, and clients as well. Everyone should be a part of a communication strategy to make the business successful.