Being an effective leader requires superior communication skills. Using these skills, you are able to help your team members stay on task and maximize their success. However, good communication doesn't always come naturally. To improve your communications skills and the overall effectiveness of your leadership, follow these four tips.
1. Plan for efficient communication
Communication should not waste your time or the time of your team members. Plan all communications carefully to ensure that every message you send is clear and concise. Avoid repeating yourself or sending messages that aren't useful or necessary. Read and edit every message carefully before sending it, whether you are providing instructions or you want to text your team motivational tips.
If you aren't sure whether your current communication style is efficient, consider sending your team surveys for feedback and overall improvement. Ask them to be honest about times they received messages that were repetitive, unnecessary or confusing. Don't view this feedback as criticism. Instead, look at it as an opportunity to grow and improve your skills as a leader.
2. Deliver your message in the right way
Your good intentions or valuable ideas are of no use when you aren't able to deliver a message to your team efficiently. In every interaction with your team, be authentic and transparent. Make sure all messages are easy to understand and in line with the goals of your company. In addition to ensuring that your message includes the information you want your team to receive, be sure that it also defines the next steps each team member should take after they have read the message. For example, if you want feedback from your team about a certain message, be sure to ask for this feedback specifically. If you want answers to specific questions, be clear about your expectations. Finally, if you find through feedback from your team members that your message has led to a miscommunication, resolve the issue promptly and try to correct it in future communications.
3. Encourage discussion and dialogue
Good leadership requires you to be open to feedback, questions and suggestions from your team. Make sure that all of your team members know that they are welcome to approach you at any time. When interacting with team members, listen carefully and ask questions if you don't understand the speaker's meaning. Be open-minded when it comes to the ideas and opinions of your team members. If you have trouble understanding your team member's communications, consider making mental notes of the individual's key points and then repeating them back. If you have misunderstood what the individual is trying to say, he or she will be able to correct the problem at this time.
4. Be willing to analyze the effectiveness of your communication.
In many cases, missed deadlines, incomplete projects and other problems following through are a result of miscommunications. Although you may be tempted to see any of these incidents as a sign of insubordination, it is always a good idea to investigate the issue thoroughly before you make any judgments. To determine the cause of the problem, review the communication history between you and the team member. Look for problems with the instructions you provided. If you find that you communicated your expectations poorly, take responsibility for your role in the incident and use this information to improve communication in the future.
Good communication is essential for any leader, but it can sometimes take some time to develop these skills. By following these tips, you can improve communication with your team members and enhance the overall productivity of your company.
Author's Bio: Joel Lee is the SEO marketing specialist at Trumpia, which earned a reputation as the most complete SMS solution including user-friendly user interface and API for mobile engagement, Smart Targeting, advanced automation, enterprise, and cross-channel features for both mass texting and landline texting use cases.