Communication Management Tools
Management holds the responsibility of providing vision, inspiration and motivation for those being led. Management also requires leadership to listen to concerns, resolve issues and implement change. Use communication tools in management to increase productivity, employee satisfaction and effective change. Effective communication in management enables employees to ask questions, receive clarity and accomplish their task with clear steps to complete goals. Management communication tools include surveys, focus groups, one-on-one meetings and communication activities.
Surveys serve the dual purpose of collecting usable data from employees and customers at the same time. Surveys are formal, organized statements that are used to explore and grade certain areas of an organization's effectiveness. Statements such as, “I fully understand the purpose of the company,” or “I feel like the leadership of the company listens to me” are used to assess the perception of the participant. The participant answers the statements using a grading scale, typically from one to 10 with one being “strongly disagree” and 10 being “strongly agree.” The surveys are tallied and used to highlight areas of strength and weakness in the organization’s communication.
Focus groups are used as a feedback agent that allow management to express a particular goal or core value, and then let representatives from different departments express their ideas, thoughts and concerns about that goal. A manager facilitates a focus group discussion to learn the various perspectives and opinions about a specific area of the company’s communication. For example, the group could focus on customer appreciation, understood direction or employee satisfaction.
One-on-one meetings provide management with the opportunity to train and develop individuals, providing professional coaching and listening to the person’s needs and wants. One-on-one meetings are the most effective way to train someone in a specific area because the manager can have a close look at the person’s abilities.
Communication activities provide a hands-on experience for management to learn specific communication skills. For example, gather the managers to participate in a learning activity where the managers sit in a circle. The first person writes down a sentence and whispers it to the person to her right. That person then whispers the message to the person next to her, until the message gets to the last person. The last person repeats aloud the message he heard. The original leader says the original statement and compares it to the ending message. This activity demonstrates the need for proper oral communication and how easily messages can get distorted.