Have you ever been at a company where there’s little interaction with your boss?
You may chit-chat and say hello, talk about the weather, or the kids. Something is missing.
The chit-chat rarely leads to a conversation about your job, your aspirations, and how you’re doing.
That something is real communication.
Communication is defined as: The imparting or exchanging of information or news.
Real communication goes deeper than this definition.
It involves taking the time to get to know the employees. Finding out their dreams and passions. If things are going well at work. If their job is still fulfilling.
Uncovering these issues is vital to the continuing growth of your organization.
Here are three steps that you can take to probe deeper and show your employees that you are open to communication:
- Schedule a regular, one-on-one meeting
By scheduling a regular meeting, you and your employees have a time frame in which to come up with pertinent questions.
You may ask: Are you feeling fulfilled? What other responsibilities would you like to have? Where do you see yourself in five years?
Your employees may ask: How is the company doing? What opportunities are there for advancement? What else can I do for you?
While this type of meeting can be effective, it’s one of my least favorite. The first couple of meetings may put your employees on edge. They’ll be unsure of the landscape and the true reason for the meeting.
Keep at it though and the benefits can be huge.
- Take an employee out to lunch
You cannot go wrong with this one. What employee doesn’t like to be taken out and treated to lunch?
The employee feels like he’s getting a special treat. The setting is neutral and comfortable. It’s the perfect environment to ask questions and discuss work.
- Have a seat at their desk
Swing by their desk and have a seat in the visitor’s chair.
By being on the other side of the desk, your employee will feel more at ease and, possibly, in control of the conversation. This is great for you.
When they feel like they’re in control of the conversation, they’re willing to be more honest and open about the situations they’re facing on the job. Take the time and listen. Respond when it’s necessary, otherwise let them tell you what’s going on.
Decide today how you’re going to open the lines of communication with your employees. Create a action plan and begin to implement the strategy.
There’s a power in real communication. When you have real communication, you’ll notice a change in your employees. Their productivity may rise, the atmosphere of the office may change, or a sense of camaraderie may form.