Increasing Communication in the Workplace
Everyone has experienced it. There you are in a meeting and you’ve asked if anyone has any questions or comments… and no one says a word. You look around, but everyone is staring somewhere else. The only sound you hear is someone coughing in the background.
These moments can be avoided by turning them into an opportunity - here are just a few simple ways to invite your employees to communicate their ideas:
1. Open the lines of communication. You can’t expect people to feel comfortable speaking up right away or simply by asking them to do so. What you can do is offer multiple ways of communicating, such as an anonymous suggestion box or designated email address, brainstorming meetings or even one-on-ones. Everyone has their own unique communication style; it is up to you to access the brilliant ideas are that are just waiting to be heard.
2. Offer a monthly prize or an annual award. The prize goes to the person with the single most outlandish idea!
Why reward outlandish ideas? Because this how innovation happens- by creating a space where everyone feels comfortable enough to toss out any and all ideas, and someone else takes that idea and builds upon it. This is effective communication at its best.
3. Post pictures or your mission statement. If you see a glaring empty spot anywhere in your workplace, fill it up with inspiring photos or words to remind your employees why it is they come to work every day (Hint: think products, clients or your mission statement or company values). Creatively using wall space to effectively communicate your company’s purpose is a great way to give our employees a sense of pride, as well as subtly invite them to contribute.
For more ways to decorate your office and inspire your employees, see our previous blog on Building Pride through Storytelling in the Workplace.
Tiffany Barber is the Associate Manager of Marketing and Communications and an avid blogger for Great Place to Work® USA.