Imagine your study abroad center has 20 employees who report directly to you. But, during a major event, they failed to show up and thus ended up making it a failure. When asked for an explanation, they replied that they weren’t aware of the event and what they had to do. However, you had meticulously e-mailed them about it along with their job description for that day. This was clearly an absence of effective workplace communication. This could have been avoided with an open work environment that allows questioning to resolve confusions.
“The Art Of Communication Is The Language Of Leadership.”– James Humes
Clearly, any workplace that doesn’t practice effective communication strategies will face communication problems. This might seem like a small issue but will lead to even bigger problems. Since dissatisfied employees will not have the motivation to work in the company’s best interest, they will slack in performance and end up either leaving your study abroad center or reducing their productivity. Those who leave dissatisfied will bad mouth about the study abroad center leading to its negative marketing. Thus, in order to prevent that from happening you need to learn and enhance your skills to communicate better.
According to a data by Kollective, 45% of U.S. workers are dissatisfied with senior management’s way of communicating with them and 62% reported that they preferred face-to-face conversation with their CEO regarding updates.
In a world that introduces new education agencies every minute, you need to make sure that your company is competitive enough to stay in the market. This can be done by making sure that your pool of employees is competent and loyal to you. Now before you think about raising their salary, know that most people tend to lose monetary motivation after some time. According to Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs, people find motivation in other things such as belongingness and recognition once their basic needs are fulfilled. Thus, you need to make sure that your employees in your study abroad center communicate their needs effectively.
Some of the ways you can have effective workplace communication in your study abroad center are listed below:
Establish foundation, gain trust and stimulate feedback session
According to American Psychological Association, almost one-quarter of employees do not trust their employers. This is the reason they tend to have miscommunication leading to misunderstanding in their company. The importance of effective communication in the workplace is strongly felt by companies today. Thus, a lot of them are investing in training to improve communication skills.
An employer needs to realize that every employee wants to feel like a family member in an organization. You have to involve yourself in conversations with your employees about topics other than their work; say, their family, hobbies, birthday, favorite sport and so on. This way you can establish a foundation for a relationship and set an example of what your study abroad center culture is like. However, you need to ensure that everything they share with you is confidential and will not leave your ears. By doing so, you will gain your employee’s trust and loyalty since they will feel a certain connection with you.
You must ensure that enough feedback is being provided to your employees regarding their work. The employers can do so by conducting weekly 1:1s with the employees or discussing informally during breaks.
Treat everyone in your company as equals
In a globalized world where people migrate from one country to another in search of better jobs or education, you need to understand that your employees in your study abroad center aren’t going to have the same background. Right from their appearance to their goals in life, they will differ. So, in order to understand them better, you need to spend quality time with each of them. It doesn’t have to be a lunch or dinner date; a regular or weekly session on their performance goals and their expectations can have a similar effect. This will also promote effective workplace communication. As an employer, you also need to make sure that you aren’t favoring one person over the other. This is sometimes done unintentionally by the employers. So, make sure that you aren’t spending a lot of time with just one or two employee
Mostly, the biased behavior of the employers tends to dissatisfy their employees. Thus, try to avoid this behavior so your employees know they are cared for equally. By doing so, the outsiders will also know that your study abroad center is conducting best practices.
Engage your employees in team-building exercises
Everyone loves games. You and your employees do too. One of the ways companies can enhance team spirit and unity is by participating in team sports and exercises. A company that has team members instead of employees will also promote effective workplace communication. One of these activities could also include setting SMART goals for the company. This will provide a platform where you and your employees from different departments can meet, have fun and know each other. You can separate one day a week or one day in 15 days to organize these kinds of activities. You will also be able to show your employees that you are one of them. Thus, there will be a chance to communicate better and have an effective workplace communication.
Avoid mistakes in written communication
People make mistakes all the time. A lot of confusions arise due to mistakes in emails and letters sent inside an organization that might hamper its internal communication. They need to be specific and even a single spelling error can lead to a lot of confusion.
Let’s go back to when you had 20 employees in your study abroad center that failed to perform in a major event. Imagine they replied that the e-mail you sent about the event had a different date than the one it was actually in. So, you rechecked your e-mail and saw that you had written the date as 16th November 2017 instead of 16th October 2017. This is only one of the examples of what could go wrong if your written communication has any error. For agency business, it is even more crucial as a single wrong letter in client’s name could cause a lot of slack in their process.
You need to make sure that your written communication is clear and specific. Also, you have to review it at least twice before sending it out in order to correct any errors.
Keep the workflow of the company transparent
If you are working in a team, then everyone in it should know where they’re heading to and have reached so far. Nobody likes unwanted surprises especially regarding their work such as extra work at the last minute. In order to minimize or even eradicate these kinds of surprises, you can update your employees regarding work progress in each department. As for your study abroad center, it is essential to have an effective workplace communication to keep track of a client’s progress. Agencies can even use technology such as educational agency management software to collaborate so that they do not have to meet every day to discuss updates. Apart from this, they can also look into other workplace collaboration tools that will make the company’s workflow transparent and improve workplace communication.
One of the major problems employers face is providing work satisfaction. The reasons for this could be anything from rigid hierarchy to employer’s biased behavior. In order to solve this, you need to ensure that you care for and listen to your employees. Most importantly, you need to adopt the strategies mentioned above to have an effective workplace communication in your study abroad center.