Importance of Open Communication

Communication is crucial in any business. Communication with employees, communication with worker unions, communication with clients and communication with the social media all form important passages for running a business successfully. But not all form of communication can be used in the same manner. Different sections of the organization needs to be handled in a different manner depending on the type of communication that would prove effective for them.

An open communication system is one of the many strategies that can be used effectively to improve business productivity and goals through employee-employer communication processes. It is necessary to empower the communication aspects in a business as more than 88% of people in a study agreed that communication ineffectiveness can cause reduced productivity.

Are you looking for methods in which you can make your employee talk more? Do you want to understand the real obstacles faced by them during work hours? Then open communication can provide an effective solution for your problems.

What is an open communication system?

Call it open communication or ‘walking the talk’, it is important to ensure that our action provide a substance for our words. When we try to implement a goal or improve productivity, it is not just important to derive strategic plans but is also important to base them on employee views and working conditions. It is also mandatory that communication systems provide employees with the option of reaching out to the managers whenever required. This forms the basis of open communication system where the organization accommodates the employee needs thus motivating him to improve productivity.

If we desire to establish an honest and simple communication process, let your employee see the process and the changes. Compliments, appreciation and feedbacks form the three pillars of open communication system which will act on a looped basis to further improve its efficiency. Frequent discussions and open ended sessions will help improve the input rate and the confidence and security of the employee on the work. It also improves the productivity rate in employees.

What to take care in an open communication system?

It is important to make sure that we follow our words in open communication systems as it tends to cause bigger implications should they contradict. Employees who cannot reach or approach their next level supervisor or higher level managers tend to vex over concerns and issues. They also tend to adhere to rules which are just imposed on them thus increasing frustration. In cases of prolonged duration, reactions and attitudes will form erupting into bigger issues with time. Problems in open communication will also destroy the basic foundation of trust it is built on.

Case study to showcase open communication

Normally CEO tends to discuss and decide policies with managerial people who share their perspective and vision but there are many exceptional cases for this. One such case is the story of Alabama Gas CEO who made a huge success in resolving the communication gaps by using open mode of communication.

Mike Warren, CEO of Alabama Gas was concerned about the poor employee union relation with the company when he took charge of the company. He decided to use open communication as a tool to sort out issues. He initially sent a message to all the departments that the old method of administration was gone and things would take a new look. This kind of information was sent to the employee level and failure to adhere to it would have caused the failure of the whole process.

The follow-up process in an open communication is always the difficult part but he kept his word and made it a success. He initiated regular dinners with the union leaders so as to use the time to understand their problems. He went to the site when workers worked and understood their working conditions and requirements. He conducted surveys on employee views and implemented them as suggestions on managerial decisions. Such approaches of his had a dynamic effect and hugely affected the business productivity and employee efficiency.

The key point to increase employee ownership is that the action taken should be regarded as a sincere effort to share and understand viewpoints and not just seen as an act of manipulation. Incorporation that action with open communication can play a key role in effective communication processes in businesses.

Editorial Team at Geekinterview is a team of HR and Career Advice members led by Chandra Vennapoosa.

Editorial Team – who has written posts on Online Learning.

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