Jul 9, 2012, 2:16 PM
Remember the game you played in kindergarten called “telephone” where everyone sits in a circle and a secret is whispered from person to person? The secret might be something along the lines of “I really like Frank’s shirt today.” But by the time the secret reaches the last person and is spoken aloud, it has transformed into “I think Frank has really let himself go over the past few years. Maybe we should stage an intervention. Do your team members feel like they are in the middle of a game of telephone with “urgent” messages frantically flying in from all different departments? Are they trying to judge if the express-mailed envelope is more or less important than the e-mail? Do the important messages get in the way of the critical ones? For an organization’s communication efforts to be understood, and therefore effective, there must be a plan in place to ensure that every communication is received as intended. Don’t let this scare you. In reality, it can be as simple as asking who, what, where, when, why and how. Ask these questions: Who will deliver the communication? What is the message? Where do team members receive the most information? When will the communication be sent? Why is this communication necessary? (Is it necessary at all?) How will the end user receive and use the message? Who? To give stability and consistency to the message, use just one person to speak for the organization. Too many people speaking for the organization may send the message of a lack of unity. If more than one person must be used for communications, limit it to just a few and create a hierarchy. What? As far as the message itself goes, it must be unified and defined. To keep messages consistent, create a style guide, which will help determine what terminology to use and keep everyone on the same page. If a message contains updated or different information than a previous message, be sure to acknowledge that the previous information has been altered.  When? Deliver routine, scheduled communications. Messages should be sent at regular intervals so they are expected. This predictability will increase the chances that the message will be read. Only extremely urgent messages should vary from scheduled message times. Being sent at a different time than usual will emphasize its importance, but only if it is rare and all other messages are sent at a regularly scheduled time. Where? Determine where your team members have access to receiving information. Messages must meet team members where they are.  Why? Before sending any message out, ask why you are sending it. Pausing will help to determine what information is essential and what is not. If it is not essential, perhaps it should only be communicated to those it concerns in a different manner.  How? The final question you must ask is how will you send this information? This is closely related to the question of where. Where team members get the messages will determine how to send it. Should it be sent as an e-mail with an attached PDF that the manager can print? An e-mail with embedded content to be read on screen? As a fax? Mailed newsletter? Should you pick up the phone and call? Determine what works best for your audience and use that method. By asking these simple questions, you can refine your organization’s communications to be more effective. Determine a spokesperson for the messages, create unified messages, send the messages out on a regular basis, ask yourself why the message is being sent, and decide by what means team members should receive the message. If you do, then Frank will always be flattered by compliments and never fear an intervention! Often, Email is widely used as an effective communication tool. CLICK HERE to read Orgwide’s Top Five Email Do’s and Don’ts. Orgwide can help improve your organization’s communications—just give us a call to learn more. Until next time, remember to take care of the customer, take care of each other, and take care of yourself!
Jun 26, 2012, 2:16 PM
The Orgwide office has been abuzz lately. That’s not to say that there’s normally a lack of buzzes in the office … quite the contrary. In fact, if one were to complete a comparative “buzz study”…
Jun 18, 2012, 2:15 PM
Let’s take a deeper dive into these six principles and show how to apply them when developing training for your staff. Each principle will be described and then the implication to trainers is…
Jun 11, 2012, 2:15 PM
Parents around the world have all heard the phrase, “Stop treating me like I’m a little kid!” more times than most would like to admit.  Changing your communication approach, as your children grow…
Jun 5, 2012, 2:15 PM
Alright gang ... time to enter the “way back machine” because we’re going retro today.  Don your leg warmers, sweat bands, spandex, and crank up your favorite inspiring tunes and get MOTIVATED because…
May 21, 2012, 2:15 PM
I have a confession to make. I am a proud, card-carrying lazy ne’er-do-well, and I just want a place where I can go and waste time in peace. That place used to be my favorite social media sites. But…
May 14, 2012, 2:15 PM
We’ve all experienced the symptoms before. Your palms begin to sweat. You heart rate doubles. You feel short of breath. You become dizzy and disoriented. And suddenly you hear it: that awful “beep.”…
May 1, 2012, 2:14 PM
In our consulting and training work, we frequently are invited to evaluate mentoring programs.  When we ask leaders to describe their mentoring programs today, the answers run the gamut from “we don’t…
Apr 24, 2012, 2:14 PM
Memphis, TN – April 24, 2012 – Collierville-based Orgwide Services was selected as a Bronze winner in the 33rd Annual Telly Awards for their asset titled “Be at Home…Today!” completed for the Homewood…
Apr 16, 2012, 2:12 PM
"Doing more things faster is no substitute for doing the right things.”- Stephen R. Covey Today’s training events may be created by trained instructional designers or perhaps by a skilled facilitator…

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