Effective internal communication with your employees is essential to keep your business functioning properly. Here are six ways that you can improve communication with your employees.
Improve Internal Communication with Your Employees
- Implement an “Open Door” Policy
Often times, employees are afraid to communicate with their superiors for fear of disappointment, disagreement, or annoying their boss. Many times an employee will refrain from giving an honest opinion if it is opposing that of their superior’s.
Implementing an open communication policy in which employees feel comfortable in communicating with their superiors will make everyone more approachable and likely increase the flow of communication. Employees must know their opinions are important and not judged so they can communicate any messages or concerns at any time. Rid your business of the traditional top-down approach to communication, as a form of two-way communication may be more beneficial to you and your employees.
- Encourage Questions
Employees will always have questions despite their qualifications, positions, or amount of time spent in the company. Make sure that employees are aware that their questions are taken seriously and that they do not feel they are being interruptive when they come to you. Employees will feel more comfortable asking questions and therefore perform their jobs better with accurate information.
- Open Multiple Platforms for Communication
Communication is not limited to one form. When assigning tasks or giving orders, communicate with employees in writing. This will help to ensure that everyone clearly understands the assignment and that there is little room for confusion. Employees will also have a way to refer back to their assignment if they need clarification.
When communicating with employees in the office, use a form of online communication such as email or chat rooms. This will allow for quick responses and an easier way for fast communication within the office.
It is a good idea to create an anonymous suggestion box for employees. This will provide a platform for employees to comment on office policies and activities that they are happy with or think need improvement, without fear of judgment or backlash.
Although these forms of communication are suggested, it is always important to ask your employees how they would like to receive information in order to best suit them.
- Check in With Employees
Employees like to feel important and be heard. Schedule one-on-one meetings with employees as often as you deem necessary. This will give your employees the chance to discuss their thoughts on their positions, tasks, and the business itself. They will likely feel more comfortable and confident in their position. Both you and your employee will leave the meeting feeling more in the loop than before.
- Reposition Your Office
The physical arrangement of your office could be hindering communication with employees. Cubicles and closed doors shut off the free flow of communication and make employees feel separated. By physically opening up the design of your office, employees will have an easier time communicating with you and with each other.
- Respond to What You Hear
The most important step in improving communication is to act on what you hear from your employees. Respond to their emails and messages within 24 hours so that they know they’ve been heard. If an employee has a complaint try to come up with a solution that will benefit everyone. By acting on what you hear employees will know that their opinion is valued.
Internal communication within a business requires a two-way effort from both superiors and employees. By following these simple steps you will open up the free flow of communication that will strengthen your company.