What’s the point?
Too often the recipient has to struggle to understand the point of the communication when it’s lengthy or hidden at the end of the communication. In business communications, especially with email, you need to effectively communicate to the recipient at the beginning of the email so they know what to do with the information shared. Research shows that readers of emails rarely go beyond the first few lines. Get to the point right away.
Too many words!
Have you ever received a lengthy email that took too long to get to the point? Good business communications should be clear, concise, and complete. Use just enough words to clearly and completely communicate the message.
When writing a communication, focus the message on what you want the recipient to do with the communication versus what you want to tell them. If you can’t think of anything the recipient can do with the message, then maybe you shouldn’t send it!
Inconsistencies in hierarchical communication
Most organizations have a hierarchical structure: a chain of executives, upper-level management, and front-line employees. When communicating from top to bottom, information can get lost in distribution—like playing a game of telephone. As information trickles down the chain, the original message is either mistranslated or loses important details. This often occurs as a result of rushed/delayed communication or upper-level management filtering details based on who they’re communicating with.
When presenting new information, the messenger should be consistent. There is no room for miscommunication or error if everyone receives the same memorandum.
Unclear objectives and goals
One of the biggest communication issues in the workplace stems from a lack of clarity. To work effectively as a team, everyone must have a clear understanding of organizational (and individual) objectives and goals. How can you work toward something if you’re not sure what you’re working toward?
With any new project, developing clear objectives and goals is crucial for organizational success. These objectives and goals should be outlined clearly and consistently across all relevant documents and memorandums.
It’s easy to hit that cc button in an email. Then everyone receives your message—and feels obligated to respond it. Guess what? They also copy everyone! In most instances, not everyone needs to be copied on an email. Keep the cc list to those who can do something with the communication.
Furthermore, don’t rely on written correspondence alone. When sharing important information digitally, request verbal confirmation and reiterate for clarity.
Looking to strengthen your organizational communication? Romar Learning Solutions offers a variety of adult learning solutions for leadership and staff development. Visit our website or contact us for more information!