Why leadership communication is so important
People feel overwhelmed by the volume of information they receive. The most important messages easily get diluted, lost or misinterpreted. So it's critical to think carefully about what these deeply important messages are, and to do all you can to make sure they land for people they way you intended.
Building and sustaining an organisation high in trust starts and ends with truly effective communication. There can be few employees who have not experienced concern, frustration or confusion brought about by poorly handled communication at some point in their working lives. Aside from what you actually say, people will watch what you do, how you behave, how you respond (or don't).
They will draw conclusions about it. It is in their perception and interpretation of your words and actions that the real meaning of your communication emerges. Consequently the tone of what you say, the way you say it, is as important as the content of your message.
The impact a leader has through their actions and words is vast, both at an organisation and individual level. Every action and every word is like a pebble being dropped into a pond -they create ripples that can be flowing and beautiful or choppy and unpleasant.
As a leader at any level you need an awareness of how you appear in the eyes of others and an insight into the conclusions they come to based on their interactions with you. These conclusions will not always be openly and immediately shared with you, for various reasons – you will have to establish a good relationship of trust and often do some skilled questioning and probing to uncover what’s really on people’s minds.
Start by doing theses three basic things to improve your communication
- Become more aware of your own thinking and reasoning, and where it comes from (your deeply held values and beliefs)
- Make your own thinking and reasoning more visible to others
- Create the space and climate for a genuine and candid dialogue with others to explore their thinking and reasoning and open up possibilities for moving forward together
Leadership communication plays out on several levels, all of them mission critical.
We have developed a robust approach to addressing leadership and team communication, from developing the message, through what it takes to help it land well, to getting feedback and helping people to learn and adapt as they move forward.