Have you wondered what makes a business successful and prepares people to cooperate in the somewhat harsh, specific biz-world? Many professionals put emphasis on building relations and connections – in other words: effective business communication. This, more than other factors, impacts professional success thanks to:
- sharing knowledge and learning about new opportunities,
- managing, transferring, and conveying information, e.g. when you lead a team,
- cultivation of relations between clients, employees, business partners, and competitors.
In this post, we’re highlighting the importance of effective business communication and its importance in every step of building a business.
Types of business communication
Every leader and executive knows that communication builds companies’ success. There are different channels, types, and methods of communication – You can communicate via phone, email, direct conversation, internet interactions, and texting. These ways of communication differ in tone, content, purpose, and receivers.
Internal, upward communication
This type can be observed for example in communication between juniors and managers (but depends on the hierarchy in an organization). It goes “upward”, so in most cases, it is mainly used in formal meetings and in giving reports, surveys, and filling templates within a company to deliver complete information to management.
Internal, downward communication
This type mainly concerns leaders and chief operators, it shows up in e-mails, letters, memos, or verbal informing. Information is passed from the top of the company’s hierarchy (management roles) to the bottom (people that are managed). While communicating downwards leaders should remember to be clear, polite, and professional.
Internal, lateral communication
Lateral communication can be seen among coworkers in activities like mailing, talking, messaging about work. Such communication happens both between departments (cross-departmental) and within them (internal, providing updates, asking, helping each other, planning work). Co-workers should always be encouraged to communicate in a respectful and clear way, especially when they talk online.
This communication takes place outside the office – it deals with partners, clients, vendors, and suppliers. It focuses on giving feedback, asking for/presenting an offer, arousing interest, and compelling respect. When communicating with another “entity”, for example when choosing a software provider, it is important to be clear, concise, correct, and polite.
Remember that people “may forget what you said – but they will never forget how you made them feel” (Carl W. Buehner)
How to build business relations by using the right form of communication
Communicating more effectively with people from and outside your organization will let you see emerging problems clearly, identify ways-out, and implement solutions. The tips below concern communication in the workplace, feel free to implement them in your company and test whether they work for you.
1. Give messages where they are needed the most
Remember to choose the right channel of online communication with your coworkers, partners, and clients.
LinkedIn – perfect for building relations with partners, networking, publishing expertise content, engaging in professional discussions, and recruiting new people.
E-mails – good for internal communication on all levels and the first tool to answer your clients and communicate with job-seekers.
Slack/intranet – are the most popular tools to share quick messages, conduct group chats within one department/team, set meetings, and stay in touch with every employee in a company.
Company websites, blogs – the best way to attract new clients, employees, partners, display offers, and influence the market.
2. Think about emotional intelligence
Emotional intelligence is all about putting yourself in someone else’s shoes. An emotional person respects other people’s feelings, notices when colleagues have troubles with a particular field/task or a hard time because of personal issues, and this is an important element of business communication.
Social interactions and teamwork are easier for those who understand how others feel. Statistics show that understandable and emotionally intelligent leaders (respectful, honest, tactful) guide satisfied and happy employees who transfer that onto customers and vendors.
3. Learn some quick problem-solving strategies
Businesses are full of troubles. When you know how to solve problems, your management skills are better, and you know how to deal with stress, then conflicts seem more like a minor everyday issue rather than a disaster.
There are some steps you may take when you do not know how to approach a problematic situation for the first time. Look at this checklist and see what the process of problem-solving looks like, step by step:
- Identify a problem.
- Analyze the case and what caused it.
- Brainstorm several solutions that will fit the case.
- Implement the solution that seems the most fitting.
- Monitor the situation.
- Set up a system of dealing with similar issues when they occur in the future.
4. Be the spokesperson and a storyteller
Your communication happens online and offline – in the real and digital world – thus, you’ve got plenty of opportunities to speak for your company/brand. Think about being a spokesperson and storyteller, encourage your employees to help them understand their role in a team/company, and let them share their own stories. If you speak with one voice on different channels of business communication you win the trust and increase credibility as a leader in your industry.
The right corporate communication distinguishes a great business from a good one. As an executive remember to:
- Always work on developing your communication skills.
- Accept diversity in the workplace.
- Be an active listener, be open to what others say.
- Give constructive feedback.
- Choose the appropriate channel of communication to share particular messages.
- Remember about emotional intelligence and empathy.
- Do not be afraid to become a spokesperson.
Good luck on your path to developing your own communication skills!
About the author:
Matt Warcholinski is the COO of Brainhub and a serial entrepreneur building companies supported by Wayra, Microsoft BizSpark, Pioneers Festival in Vienna, and others. He’s passionate about growth and marketing strategies and worked with startups and companies covered by magazines like INC, Entrepreneur, and Business Insider.
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