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8 Top Ways Leaders Can Improve Team Communication

Expert Panelists are handpicked and invited to contribute because of their knowledge and valuable insight within the areas of Business, Mindset, Leadership, Innovation, Technology and Lifestyle. In Brainz Expert Panel, 8 members of The Brainz Magazine community of experts will share their best tips, advice, ideas, hacks within different topics.

 

1. Having consistent & dynamic team meetings

There are many ways one can improve and promote healthy team communications. If I had to choose just one, I would start with having consistent, dynamic team meetings. What do I mean by this?


Consistent

Take a proactive approach, set a weekly meeting (or even daily, depending on the industry and/or what is happening ) same time, same agenda (unless otherwise stated), have each member of the team share, it is not a one-person show. You can highlight someone's efforts and/wins, have an ice breaker, use music etc., to engage them more.


A simple agenda: Wins, Follow-Ups, Check-Ins, Needs, Projections till next meeting, Goals/actions will next meeting


Dynamic

Have fun with them, keep each other on our toes, bring in a guest speaker, ask one of the team members to run the meeting, play a game, get creative and sometimes silly. Also "masterminds"/"think tanks" to review and/or create a process, template etc.


As a leader, make sure you are watching for any lulls, anyone who might be a little off, or need extra encouragement and make sure you touch base with that person in private if needed.


I know this is simple, and many do have meetings, however, the meetings I have seen are more like lectures, with a lack of engagement, nor connection to it, so change it up!


2. Be super clear on what outcome you want to achieve

You need to be super clear on what outcome you want to achieve with any specific communication. Employing EQ, check your own current state of mind (composed, irritable, focused, worried, etc.) and also check the “emotional temperature” of the team. Make sure that not only the content of your communication but also the context (where, when, how) is appropriate. If setting new goals or guiding your team, be crystal clear on who is in charge of what part of the project. Thoughtful and consistent delegation, against clear deliverables and time frames, goes a long way!

Jelena Radonjic, Leadership Coach


3. Conscious listening

One of the main pillars for high-quality team communication is conscious listening. To listen consciously means to pause your own thought process and focus fully on the speaker to absorb with all senses what is said with words and what’s said with the tone of voice, and body language. It’s more than listening solely to the spoken words. Conscious listening is applied when we really hear each other and can respond in a respectful and compassionate way that leads to efficient problem solving and improved success. If we apply conscious listening consistently, it builds trust and lays the foundation for high-level team communication.

Dr. Petra Frese, Intuitive Scientist


4. Identify VAK modalities

Understand that people communicate based on their model of reality and how they process information, known as VAK modalities (visual, auditory, and Kinesthetic). Identify this by observing their predicates to describe certain events or memories and respond in their preferred communication style (which may mean using all three to communicate your message)..


5. Powerful inquiring

Coaching is facilitating a system of relationships, empowering people to feel more connected both to each other and their own self, contributing to the development of highly trustful relationships within organisations and improving cross-cultural communication. One way to improve team communication, is through powerful inquiring. First, as a leader, asking yourself questions such as: “Which relationships around matter to us? What is our vision? And how do I improve myself as a leader so that my team can also improve?”, will enable the creation of a safe environment in which every individual is actively involved in the co-creation of a safe and inclusive space. At the same time, by adopting a coaching mindset and asking your teams open-ended questions such as “Could you tell me more about this?” “What do you think?” What could we do differently?” and using an inclusive “we”, you will encourage people to reflect, share their unique ideas and contribute the team’s goals. Adelina Stefan, Professional Certified Coach (PCC-ICF)


6. Get to know each other

There are many personality- and psychometric tests that team members can take to learn about each other. These tests can provide insight about different personalities, strengths and drivers, and help teams to improve relationships and adapt their behaviour with others. With a better understanding of each other, teams can improve their communication and therefore, increase productivity and performance and recognize the right opportunities to achieve the results their leaders require.


7. Host bi-monthly jam sessions to discuss current practices and new initiatives

At each session identify a current company practice or procedure. Rate its effectiveness. Identify who is involved in the process and who should be involved that is not involved. Identify the why behind the process so those that are not involved do not feel excluded but included. Solicit input and involvement from all.


8. Use an App

Up to the minute communicate is critical for the fast-paced nature of business today. Using an App like Slack, Whatsapp, or Marco Polo can allow for a convenient and easy way for your team to stay connected. Create different channels for different areas of your business and set standards for communication around deadlines or project updates. I recommend always having a channel open for your team to share praise for each other or suggestions on self-care. Find the App that is right for your team and improve your team communication.

Arliss Dudley-Cash, Business Coach and Consultant



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