Becoming a Good Communicator

It's not what you say, it's how you say it. Research shows that the most effective leaders are good communicators. They have learned to give clear instructions, listen to questions and suggestions, and keep people well informed. Research also shows that good communication promotes:

  • improved productivity
  • better problem-solving
  • a reduction in grievances
  • ideas for improvements
  • better working relationships
  • greater personal satisfaction

When you are communicating expectations, it is critical that all of the "whats" are conveyed for clear understanding. The employee needs to know:

  • why the task must be done
  • when the work is to be completed
  • how rigid the deadline is
  • how the finished work will be measured or evaluated
  • how important the task is in relation to other work being done
  • how the task fits into the big picture

Effective communication takes time and attention. Be sure to slow down, listen to comments from the employee, and ask questions to make sure the employee understands what you've communicated.

Tomorrow's managers pay attention to the words they choose, what needs to be included in the message, and how their staff members feel about what they are hearing and how it's being communicated. Effective communication is part of being a good manager, and will be reflected in more efficient, more productive and happier employees.