Effective Communication

What enables a manager to communicate with his or her staff?

There are four components to effective communication.  With a little bit of work, patience and practice, one’s level of communication will drastically improve.

Direction:

What is the intent and direction of the communication?  Is it top down or bottom up? Is the message’s content fair to all involved?  The direction of your communications signals whether you are broadcasting or conversing to your constituents.

 

Frequency:

Important concepts are repeated more often than non-important concepts. Are you making yourself clear?  If you are not repeating significant items, your staff may not understand the importance of the issue at hand.

 

Content:

The content of the message is everything.  Though how a message is delivered is essential to the quality of the message, the content and the context of how the message is delivered must be clearly understood.  A good communicator understands how his or her message is being interpreted and if the message’s intent is truly understood in the appropriate context that it needs to be delivered.

Channel:

The medium of how your message is delivered is crucial for your success.  If the context of your message is that you have an open door policy and that you want to dialogue with your staff, having a posted video clip does not enforce such a message.  Similarly, if you are looking for quick feedback from your staff, having a multi-page memo delineating your request does not address your goals. Your message needs to match the medium for which it is intended.

Following these four concepts will enable organizational leaders an improved method of communication.

For without effective communication, leadership will certainly fail.