Missed deadlines. Neglected projects. Uninspired employees. Lack of innovation. Does any of that sound familiar? If so, your workplace might be suffering from a communication crisis. At LiveView Technologies, we understand that good communication is the key to running a business smoothly, and when you work in the security industry, a smooth-running business can literally save lives. We’ve gathered four tips that will help you improve communication in your workplace so that you can reach your goals, innovate, and keep your clients and employees engaged and inspired.
1. Focus on collaboration
According to PGi, studies show that workplace collaboration can increase successful innovation by 15%. Collaboration helps people feel like they play a role in the success of your company because it allows them to contribute their unique ideas and strengths. But whether you're dealing with conflicting opinions or your employees generally see eye-to-eye on most things, effective collaboration rarely comes easily. Start by creating an environment where ideas are heard and employees feel valued. People won't share their ideas if they don't think those ideas will be respected. Collaboration requires trust, so it’s important to encourage new ideas and celebrate them when they do come—always give credit where credit is due.
2. Encourage candid feedback
If you’ve ever received unwanted negative feedback, you know how uncomfortable—and even embarrassing—it can be. For many of us, the words "feedback" and "criticism" seem to be synonymous. When it comes to the workplace, though, giving candid feedback is absolutely essential. If that feels scary, you probably need to shift your mindset and consider different feedback channels. Rather than thinking of feedback as a way to judge or critique, try to view it as an opportunity to grow and improve. Additionally, it’s important to remember that people prefer giving and receiving feedback in different ways. By allowing for multiple approaches to giving feedback, you ensure that people are able to share in the way they’re most comfortable. Some of our favorite feedback channels include one-on-one employee evaluations, company-wide polls, group discussions, and anonymous suggestion boxes.
3. Set clear goals and expectations
When people don’t understand what is expected of them, it’s easy to fall behind on projects or miss deadlines altogether. Conversely, setting clear objectives allows people to confidently contribute without any confusion about due dates or individual responsibilities. Proper training, regular check-ins, and honest discussions all contribute to that transparency and understanding. Before starting any project, make sure to define the desired outcome and discuss why that outcome matters. It’s much easier to get things done when everyone is on the same page.
4. Make sure to follow up
No one wants to nag their peers to the point of annoyance, but following up is extremely important if you want to finish the projects in your queue. So, how do you find the balance between being persistent and being pushy? Unless a project is urgent, it’s probably not necessary to follow up daily. Setting up a weekly check-in can keep everyone on the same page. Once you get the ball rolling, you might find that weekly check-ins are too much, or you might find that you need more frequent communication. Don’t be afraid to tweak the cadence of your check-ins until you find what works best for each specific project.
No matter what industry you are in, good communication is at the heart of success. If you’ve found that projects aren’t being completed, expectations aren’t being met, and important details are falling through the cracks, it may be time to focus on strengthening communication in your workplace.