Teamwork and communication in the workplace go hand in hand. In order for a team to be successful, it’s vital that each member communicates effectively to ensure the group as a whole is always up to date on the task at hand. Whether you’re working with a small project team or an entire business’ staff, it’s important to focus on communicating effectively to realize the benefits of team communication.
Develop Clarity and Understanding
One of the major benefits of team communication is providing clarity around the projects the team is working on. In the workplace, members of a team have a specific role and are responsible for certain kinds of tasks. For example, at a fast food restaurant, the team may consist of cooks, cashiers and runners. Each member of the team has a defined job. When they communicate with one another, they are able to make sure each team member knows what they are doing. This ensures safety, efficiency and productivity.
Communicating within teams can also help colleagues to understand the issues or roadblocks that are affecting progress. For example, if your customer service team is working together to solve a problem with a customer, one of the issues may be how upset the customer is. If team members can communicate effectively with one another to come up with a resolution, they may be able to diffuse the situation and keep the customer happy before they need to escalate the issue to management.
Ensure Productivity and Results
Successful communication in groups and teams leads to higher productivity and better overall business results. Team members work with one another to achieve a specified outcome. When each member of the team is aware of what others are doing, they are likely to be more efficient as they can eliminate redundancies.
If a cleaning crew is working together to make sure an office building is spotless, it’s important for them to keep each other informed of which areas have been cleaned and which have not. That way, a crew member is less likely to vacuum the same rug after it has already been cleaned by another member. Communication helps teams to find efficiencies so they can more effectively get results.
Create Strong Bonds
One of the long-term benefits of team communication is that it helps colleagues build trust and establish strong relationships. With open communication, employees learn about each other’s working styles, personalities and personal lives. This provides them with a more comprehensive view of the people they work with.
When employees feel comfortable with the members of their team, they are more likely to suggest innovative and creative ideas because they feel safe. They are also more likely to solve minor conflicts within the team on their own without management interference. Strong bonds within a team help members to understand each other’s strengths and use them to their advantage. They also learn about each other’s weaknesses and work together to build up their colleagues.
Team Communication Strategies for Your Business
In order to realize the many benefits of team communication, it’s critical to develop team communication strategies for your business. Establish guidelines that help teams communicate with one another. Provide conflict resolution ideas and team building exercises. Set aside time for social activities that the teams can do to learn more about each other. Consider investing in personality tests to learn how your team is composed and whether the individuals complement one another or whether they are likely to cause conflict.
Learn about the different communication styles within your team. You may need to procure team communication tools to help your team reach it’s potential. Collaboration tools such as Slack help teams keep project-related communication organized. Project management tools such as Basecamp or JIRA enable teams to keep each other up to date on progress and deadlines.
Anam Ahmed is a Toronto-based writer and editor with over a decade of experience helping small businesses and entrepreneurs reach new heights. She has experience ghostwriting and editing business books, especially those in the "For Dummies" series, in addition to writing and editing web content for the brand. Anam works as a marketing strategist and copywriter, collaborating with everyone from Fortune 500 companies to start-ups, lifestyle bloggers to professional athletes. As a small business owner herself, she is well-versed in what it takes to run and market a small business. Anam earned an M.A. from the University of Toronto and a B.A.H. from Queen's University. Learn more at www.anamahmed.ca.