Are your employees isolated in their cubicles, arguing in the conference room, or finding ways to collaborate and work productively together? As you move into the new year, you may wish to examine and reflect on the communication of your unit. Are interactions positive and helpful? Or are there some dysfunctional patterns at play?
Workplace productivity, as well as overall morale, is very affected by something as simple as how well your employees communicate and get along. Is it time to figure out a new, smoother path for working together in 2013?
Boost Workplace Productivity with Better Communication
1. Get to the Root of Potential Problems
If there is a dysfunctional dynamic going on, talk to each employee privately to catch up and see if you can figure out what might be causing tensions. If those conversations are not helpful, it might work to get your employees to take an online personality test that will potentially illuminate strengths, weaknesses, and communication styles. Understanding the problem and potential lapses in constructive conversation can actually help increase workplace productivity.
2. Call in the Experts
If talking to your employees on their own has not helped the situation, then you may wish to call in an expert to help navigate this difficult time. A life coach, a management expert, or even someone qualified within your organization may be able to help teach your employees how to communicate with each other in a positive, productive manner. Plan a series of hands-on workshops for employees to learn open communication techniques that can help them both at home and in the workplace.
3. Encourage Informal Communication
Many businesses are now using social media to connect with potential customers as well as to encourage their employees to communicate with each other. Platforms such as Facebook and more industry-specific programs are successfully encouraging camaraderie and helping employees to get to know and appreciate each other. Informal social media contact, casual office get-togethers, and the like can actually boost professional presence and workplace productivity by strengthening bonds and the like.
4. Allow Autonomy
Give your employees space to be creative and the tools to figure things out on their own. Sometimes less pressure and control can allow space for increased professional presence and productivity when employees are able to navigate difficulties on their own two feet.