Business secret: Communicate often – and well

I didn’t know.

My manager didn’t tell me.

That’s the first I’ve heard of it.

That clerk was so rude. I’m never going back there again.

Those people don’t seem to talk to each other.

Sound familiar? Are people saying this in or about your business?

Communications can help or hurt your business. Poor – or no – communications actually can cost your business. Communications with customers are especially crucial, but even internal communications can significantly impact your business success.

Let’s start with the last couple of comments above. What are your customers / clients saying about your team members? Do you have a rude employee? Do you have employees who clearly want to be somewhere else, in the midst of a customer transaction?

I’ve seen fast food employees checking their cell phones as they were taking orders from customers. I’ve been on the receiving end of a very rude company representative who was obviously ready to go home when I expected a certain level of customer service toward the end of his work day. I’ve always had extremely pleasant exchanges with a clerk in a grocery store. Guess which business I will recommend to others and return to myself on a regular basis?

Internally, your employees may be repeating the first three comments above. Managers have their meetings and then go about their business without sharing vital information with their team. Individuals working on a project find it easier just to do the work alone, rather than involve co-workers. Front-line employees don’t get the information that is decided behind closed management doors.

I’ve worked in a corporate environment that was so stressful, we were standing in line hoping for our turn when the layoffs started. Most of the stress was caused by communication issues. There was virtually no downstream communication. Mistakes were made because people did not have the right information or, in some cases, any information.

Your secret to business success? Communicate with your customers / clients. Communicate internally. Do it often. Do it well. Misinterpretation can be just as harmful as no communication.

Write your emails so they are clearly understood, without a long chain of follow-up messages. Make a phone call to discuss things. Make meetings meaningful by providing actual information and answering questions.

Of course it will take some effort. If it were easy, everybody would be doing it!

Train your team members to understand what your customers / clients need to know and to learn how to provide that information to them on a regular basis.

Train your managers to consider what their team members need to know and to learn how to provide that information to them on a regular basis.

Communication can hurt or help your business. Clear, regular communication can be the secret to your business demise or to your business success.

 

Ready to train your team? Let’s talk.

pat@words-working.net

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