What comes to mind when considering the culture you want to establish on your team? Dream big! Great. So now what…

A healthy workplace culture – the one you dreamed about above –  can find success and sustain growth when you invest in high-performing systems. But one thing is more valuable than any system or process: communication.

That’s right, communication. If you invest properly in communication, your team will promote effective collaboration, boost morale and job satisfaction, and rapidly expand individual productivity. 

You want your team to work cohesively for the mission and goal of the company, right? Do they know that?

But there is one thing that is more valuable than any system or process: communication.

Communication Is Always More Important Than You Think

Many teams struggle because the leaders are not clearly communicating the vision and mission regularly. A friend of mine coined the phrase, “In the lack of communication, people will expect the worst and operate poorly.”

For instance, let’s pretend I walk into a room with 150 employees and share this year’s goals, “This year, we’re going to increase profits by 8%.” Then I proceeded to conclude the meeting on that information alone. It sounds silly, but many organizations have failed in communication because of tactics like this.

Now, if I walk into a room with 150 employees and share, “This year, we are going to make strategic changes in employee roles by expanding training to include 20 hours per quarter and dedicated certification for each employee in the department, comprehensive market research to expand our reach in the local community by 13% over 12 months, and assess the expanding competitive landscape to match cost and strengthen our quality.” People in that room have more understanding of the goals. More importantly, they can see themselves in the goal.

You’ve given everyone in that room a glimpse into what you expect and envision in the organization’s future. It’s no longer one person in leadership with a vision but an organization moving together effectively.

Communicate the Mission and Vision Now and Often

Now it’s out in the open. The goals and the vision have been communicated. But when everyone leaves that meeting, they have forgotten more than half of what you said. So it’s time to communicate the mission and vision again and often.

Problematically, if you don’t follow up, the employees forget what you said. And it’s not their fault. It’s your vision, not theirs. They have not spent the time growing passionate about it like you have. So remind them!

In the lack of communication, people will expect the worst and operate poorly.

Share the vision in emails, texts, memos, instant messages, bulletins, cups, t-shirts, socks, pens, carrier pigeons, above the urinals, on the cups at the water cooler, in poetic form during the Christmas party, and everywhere! When you think you’ve over-communicated, communicate some more.

If you want your company to work effectively, communicate the vision and mission now and often.

Encourage and Embrace Feedback

This could be the hardest part, taking feedback from the employees. You have the vision. You’ve set the goals. But there is no way that you have thought about it from every side. You may have overlooked something or unknowingly caused tension in the company. You simply won’t know until you ask.

Large organizations can implement various strategies to encourage transparency and collaboration. Regular team meetings, both in-person and virtual, provide platforms for sharing ideas like surveys and comment boxes, addressing challenges, and fostering a culture of trust. 

And, if you’re going to encourage feedback, make sure you are willing to listen. Encourage active listening among your managers and team leads. Use constructive feedback to promote the exchange of diverse perspectives and enhance team problem-solving capabilities. 

Don’t say you’re transparent and open to collaboration if you do no intend to. The moment that you’re not, you quickly kill momentum and potentially your organization.

When you think you’ve over-communicated, communicate some more.

If you haven’t caught on, communication is key! The how, when, what, why, and who is important to everyone. But if you are not conveying that well to everyone on the team, the team cracks and breaks easily. You will never be able to overcommunicate. And your team deserves for you to try.


Until next time…

The HR Lady