Communication, communication, communication! It is not possible to overstress the value of communication with regard to management. Without communication between management and employees your effectiveness is virtually nonexistant. Without strong communication you have virtually no management! This cannot be overstressed. Without communication, all other management skills and techniques are ineffective. You can have the best intent, best ideas, and best techniques, but without communication, you cannot apply them as a manager. It is the manager's main job to communicate, not the employee! I have seen more than one manager fail and some lose their jobs because of ineffective communications. If you fail as a manager to communicate, I guarantee that you will regret it. No, I'm not trying to scare anyone. If you are a manager, you should be aware of this so you set your priorities straight. If you are experienced, you probably already realize the value and essentialness of communication. Communication uses 50-90% of a manager's time.
- Lower employee turnover
- Higher employee self esteem
- Better employee motivation
- Greater awareness of goals and the individual role in the team.
- Visit the employee daily for a short chat to let them know you are interested in them and their progress. Do not make them feel you are trying to micromanage them, but try to make them feel comfortable talking to you. This will enhance the employee willingness to talk to you if they have a problem. You can't fix problems you're not aware of.
- From time to time have a celebration together such as for birthdays, holidays, or for successful project completion.
- Ocassionally eat together as a group.
- Take individual group members out to lunch and rotate through the group.
- Have monthly group meetings.
- Balance showing interest in the employee and project against micromanagement.
Analysis of Communication
There are three forms of communication:
- Instrumental - Goal directed and intentionally transmitted.
- Consummary - An expression of emotion.
- Incidental - Communication sent unintentionally by the sender.
The following are steps taken during communication:
- Perceiving (Barrier)
Barriers to communication:
- Distorted perception - Reasons for distortion:
- Association - Bad news from the same source or person.
- Condensation - The information sent is simplified by the listener, possibly leaving out some details that may be important.
- Closure - Not all information is provided, gaps are filled by the listener.
- Expectation - What you expect to hear.
- Distrusted Source - The receiver may not believe what the sender states because they may believe there is an intent to mislead or may believe the sender is in error.
- Defensive Behavior - To prevent defensive behavior use the following attitudes:
- Descriptive rather than evaluative.
- Problem oriented rather than control oriented.
- Spontaneous in conversation rather than attempting to strategically control the conversation or listener.
- Empathetic rather then neutral
- Equal rather than superior.
- Service oriented rather than judgemental.
- Erroneous Translation
Levels of Reality Affecting Communication
- Awareness - Awareness of what is going on around an individual both by the sender and receiver. This awareness may be affected by distractions, fatigue, motivation, and other factors. Awareness will affect perception.
- Experience - Previous experiences by both the sender and the receiver affecting the way they send or receive. These experiences may be similar or dissimilar thus improving or weakening communication between sender and receiver.
- Intention - Intention may not match what was sent. I've heard people say "Do what I mean, not what I say."
In order to comunicate well and be fully aware of the above factors it is important that the sender and receiver have some degree of familiarity with each other. As sending and receiving individuals get to know each other better, they can communicate faster and more effectively. This is because they have more common experiences, are aware of most communication barriers between them, and can make necessary adjustments.