Communication is one of the most challenging aspects of working in an office.Email is one of the biggest threats to time-management and effective communication can make or break a team project.
And yet, effective communication can drastically affect not only your department’s performance and morale, but your own career as well. Your communication skills can mean the difference between being promoted or made project leader, or it can mean getting passed over yet again.
How can you better communicate with your coworkers and managers? Use these strategies to make your office relationships run smoother and improve overall productivity.
Take Stock of Your Office Environment
Every office has it’s own culture. Maybe you work in a startup where communication is informal and conversational. Or perhaps your workplace favors a more traditional corporate climate. The key to effective communication, especially if you’re a newcomer, is to take stock of your workplace’s climate and the office dynamics. Methods of communication will be vastly different for a fast and loose startup than they will be for a more structured and traditional corporate office.
Another thing to take into consideration is the individual personalities of your coworkers. Every person has his or her own preferred style of communication. Some are more introverted, and may prefer an email to a face-to-face dialogue. Others will appreciate the more personal aspect of a telephone call or a conversation over coffee. Tailoring your communication style to suit the person you’re talking to doesn’t mean that you’re being inauthentic or underhanded. On the contrary, matching someone else’s communication style is a gesture of respect
It goes without saying that technology is an integral part of all our lives, on both personal and professional levels. For most of us, our computers, tablets and smartphones function as a primary mode of communication with our coworkers, friends and family. The advantages of this are phenomenal – we can For many of us, technology gives us the freedom to work from home, or while travelling.
You can also leverage technology in the office to improve workflows and skyrocket productivity. One of our most popular products, the Agent Buddy Training Switch Adaptor, allows you to attach two headsets to a single phone. With this adaptor, you can train a new member of your team, or work in pairs to manage client or customer relations.
Technology’s potential to enhance communication is endless. But just as with any form of communication, it’s important to observe the particular culture and preferences of your company and co-workers when it comes to leveraging technology.
Know Your Email Etiquette
Just as every office has it’s own culture and quirks of communication, so each office will favor certain email protocols over others. It may seem like a minor detail, but email etiquette can dramatically affect workplace communication. Because email has become so prevalent, many people struggle to keep up with the daily influx in their inbox, and often report feeling overwhelmed by the amount of email communication they receive each day. Observing basic office email etiquette can make your messages more effective and cut through the clutter of your coworkers inbox.
What are some of your favorite communication strategies and techniques? Answer in the comments!