Communication brings understanding, respect and clarity. As a leader, a primary goal should be to communicate so others know where they stand. Are they doing a good job? Do they understand their responsibilities? If something is wrong, do they know why and how to fix it? Communication will make or break your staff. If people feel lost in the communication cycle, they will make mistakes, look for ways to leave, or worse—undermine your leadership!
Communication creates a culture of honesty. In the book It’s Your Ship, Admiral Michael Abrashov writes, “Your people always know the score even when you don’t want them to know it.” When you have the courage to have hard conversations, your staff will thank you. Plus, they will get the message your are sharing, which is, “We deal with problems, we don’t just ignore them.”
Communication models how to deal with problems as adults and not like children. When we have the courage to have hard conversations, staff members will get the message that they are appreciated simply because you took the time to care, confront and even correct.
Communication is imperative for having a healthy culture. Patrick Lencioni, the founder of The Table Group and best selling author on business management says, “Teams who don’t engage conflict resort to veiled discussions and guarded comments.”
Once you have established strong lines of communication, you’ll want to continue checking in with co-workers to keep those open.
Weekly or bi-weekly meetings go a long way to establish sound communication while building a sense of team within your staff. The bottom line is this: When people know you care about them personally, they will be much more eager to come discuss difficult matters.
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