The Importance of Effective Communication in Employee Engagement
One of the most powerful tools which have an enormous impact on the success of any organisation is effective communication. When effective communication prevails in an organisation, it increases employee engagement, drives business growth, and also boosts workplace productivity. Effective communication is, in fact, the cornerstone of an engaged taskforce in an organisation. It’s is an organisation’s workforce that represents its most crucial investment and finally determines the failure or success of the organisation. When you have engaged employees in an organisation, it’s likely to reflect in their dedication and commitment, which is quite significant for the long-term growth of any organization, be it large or small. One of the most challenging aspects of any organisation these days is to figure out ways to efficiently communicate with its employees.
Seven Best Practices for Effective Communication
Effective communication is essential not only for employees, but also for senior leaders, managers, and other stakeholders. Let’s take a look at some of the best practices that can be followed for effective communication within an organisation.
- Draft a strategic communications plan. This communication strategy is, in fact, the lifeline of any organisation and is a crucial factor to drive employee engagement.
- Embrace consistent two-way communication. When you establish a two-way communication wherein information flows fluidly and consistently from top to bottom and vice versa, it reduces the ambiguity of messages and also rules out any kind of inaccuracies.
- Keep a check on the frequency of communication. Ensure that the communication is targeted and relevant and is not unnecessarily adding to information overload.
- Have engaging messages. While it is important that the core message needs to be consistent at every level, it is equally important to tailor messages and deliver the same to the target audience for ease of understanding and accessibility.
- Have strong communication channels. When you offer your employees with a choice to access specific information, it automatically creates a sense of feeling empowered and respected. This helps in making communication more engaging.
- Rule out the fear of repercussion. As a manager, it is essential for you to establish a safe platform where your employees can freely express their opinions without worrying if this will impact their position.
- Assess the success of communication after performance evaluations. If required, conduct employee satisfaction surveys to measure this.
Employee retention depends a lot on the effectiveness of communication between the leaders and the employees of an organisation. Research has established the fact that if your employees are well informed with relevant, personal, and engaging communication, it will give your organisation a competitive edge and will directly impact the bottom line.
As per a series of studies carried out by Watson Wyatt Worldwide, employees who are engaged are twice as likely to be ace performers, miss fewer days of work compared to their counterparts who are relatively less engaged, are more supportive of any kind of organisational change, and have a much lower turnover rate. Effective communication is, in fact, a key driver for employee engagement and is a strong indicator of an organisation’s financial performance.
One of the key initiatives of HR is to boost employee engagement within an organisation. This is done via various surveys, reward schemes, meetings, and other programs. However, the simplest way to increase employee engagement is paying attention in day to day communication. Organisations must pay attention towards training and coach employees to increase the levels of self-awareness, which is a vital factor. As a manager, you have the most day to day level of interaction with your staff. Hence, they should be your focus in the area of communication to increase employee engagement.
You must always keep in mind that the most effective communication is one where one-on-one discussions are open. When you follow this, you will realize that relationships are strengthened, and some of the most creative ideas emerge when you encourage open communication. While these types of open discussions may be challenging especially when you have some of your employees working remotely, you can take the help of technology here. Have video conferencing, or create an intranet that is similar to social media sites such as Facebook. This will help in encouraging open communication in a manner in which people use the social networking forum on a day to day basis in their personal lives.