How Important Is Communication in Business?
Business leaders must be equipped with a shed-full of tools, skills, and qualities to help them and their teams excel. Leaders must be logical and creative, confident and unpretentious, positive and honest; they must be able to execute daily tasks while working toward long-term goals, concentrate on the big picture while keeping the workforce productive every hour. Yet, no matter how innovative a leader is, no matter how conscientious or motivational, a leader is nothing without excellent communication skills.
Communication should be among an organization’s top priorities, which means leaders must focus on maintaining top-level communication skills. Businesses that boast effective communicators in leadership positions benefit in the following important ways:
A business is merely a rigid structure of relationships between subordinates and superiors. The workers on the bottom support the leaders on the top with trust and loyalty — and the leaders on the top support the workers on the bottom with honesty and respect. However, the only way to convey these attitudes and intentions is through open communication. Workers and leaders alike must be willing and able to express themselves to one another, so everyone in a business can achieve what is necessary to be productive and fulfilled. In a business where communication is prioritized, relationships grow strong and workers and leaders alike are less likely to abandon ship.
When communication is fluid within a business, it is common for ideas to sprout like flowers in a well-tended garden. Workers and leaders who feel free to communicate are more likely to share their thoughts and opinions with one another. This process often leads to innovative, new strategies for accomplishing tasks or expanding the brand, helping everyone to become more productive and the business to become more profitable. Businesses should even be eager to open communication with customers, who tend to offer valuable insight that drives innovation. Innovation leads to better competition within a marketplace, making communication exceedingly valuable.
Businesses can increase efficiency by dividing workers into teams, and but teams are in no way guaranteed to be effective — unless they communicate well. Within a team, each worker is responsible for a specific portion of responsibility, but if team members do not trust or respect each other, or if team members do not feel secure in their roles otherwise, a business’s structure breaks down and it loses productivity. Thus, teambuilding exercises designed to facilitate communication have become popular around the world. Some businesses also encourage workers and leaders to earn certifications in communication, which provide formal instruction to improve team functionality.
Workers are vital members of any business, and they deserve to know how and why their business exists. Proper communication can effectively set employee expectations and aid understanding of goals and responsibilities. Leaders should be able to explain to employees how their performance will impact the greater organization; at the very least, leaders should be able to provide a clear mission statement for the business, so employees understand what they are working toward. Finally, businesses with effective communication strategies will be better equipped at educating employees, making them more adept at their jobs and better equipped to communicate with their team members and leaders.
Growing companies benefit greatly by improving their communication. Strong and stable growth requires cooperation and consistency, and reliable communication allows workers and leaders to be in-sync during periods of expansion and change. As a business grows, it is common for communication to be disrupted, but businesses that can maintain strong communication from top to bottom (and vice versa) are more likely to find continued success. There are a few tried-and-true strategies for preserving communication within a growing business, including:
- Establishing a well-defined chain of command
- Focusing on results without neglecting respectful behavior
- Scheduling information-sharing meetings between tiers of management
- Offering details and being thorough in explanations
Transparency has become an increasingly important issue as rumors and false facts circulate the wider culture. When individuals understand the complete and total truth, they feel more confident and secure — meaning transparent businesses boast workforces with higher morale and audiences with greater satisfaction and loyalty. All businesses should be committed to communicating openly and honestly with employees and consumers.