If you had told me eight months ago we would still be dealing with a pandemic, I would have said, “No way!” Yet, here we are – still rolling with the punches, trying to figure out how to keep our businesses afloat, and trying to keep employees engaged and aligned while working remotely. Communication has always been a critical skill set for managers and teams, but in the current environment, it’s more important than ever.
This month we thought we’d share some quick bullets around what we’re doing to keep the lines of communication open and effective.+
- Consistent, honest communication is more important now than ever. With work / life a jumble currently, telling it like it is essential. I’m a very direct, no-sugar-coating communicator in general, and having honest conversations around the state of the business, how we are adjusting to meet current state regulations and customer needs, and where we need to focus our energy has helped keep the team working together toward a common goal.
- “Meeting” regularly keeps things moving forward! My entire team is working remotely currently. Keeping track of who is working on which project, project status, and where they need help is only manageable (for me) with regular team check-in meetings. Yes, I can read the latest update or schedule, but hearing it from each individual anchors things in my head and helps me keep track of everything. And, because we meet consistently, the team knows my expectations.
- Body language!!!!! We’re all a little Zoomed out these days, however the secret to keeping people engaged on a video conference call is to be engaged yourself! No slouching, look at the camera, don’t multi-task and smile! We could all use a few more smiles these days.
- Listen to understand – not respond. This communication skill is potentially the most difficult to learn, and practice consistently. In a world where everything moves at the speed of light, it is easier to listen and formulate your response before the individual has finished speaking. Pause. Take the time to listen to understand before you answer. You’ll get further, faster.
This is what has worked for me and my team. We’d love to hear how you and your team are finding ways to keep lines of communication open and effective! Shoot us an email, or add a comment to this Blog post.
Thanks for reading, and remember to smile!
Cheryl and Team.
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- Sign-up for our Communication Skills virtual course!