Communicate Effectively

Establishing two-way trust between employees and leaders is essential for success in an organization.

One way to facilitate two-way trust is by communicating effectively. Trust is built when communication is professional and respectful while also being transparent and constructive. If an employee can expect honesty and respect when sharing thoughts and ideas with their leader, it will promote a culture of ownership and innovation. Kimberly Svoboda, from Aspiration Catalyst, states that leaders must model the way by also listening deeply to ensure others are heard, and that it is a safe environment for employees to share feedback (Forbes, 2021).

Share Thanks for Feedback and Follow Up

Once a leader receives feedback, they should say “Thank you,” and do something with what they have heard. It is important to remember that once a leader asks for feedback, there is potential for a negative impact if follow up is not communicated. Leaders should periodically update employees of any movement related to their feedback- even if it means communicating that there isn’t any follow up available yet. This action shows the employee that their leader hasn’t forgotten about their feedback.

Know Your Team Members

Another important aspect of communicating effectively is making sure you know your audience. Leaders should touch base with their employees to better understand how they prefer to be communicated with. Likely, a leader will need to communicate with their employees in multiple methods to ensure the communication is effective. According to Forbes.com, today’s workforce has up to five generations of people working together. It is important to bridge the gap of communication in order to strengthen team collaboration and personal connection, which will lead to maximizing productivity and retaining employees. Leaders should explore new communication methods that foster engagement, transparency, and collaboration.

Conduct Stay Interviews

In order to further the initiative of effective communication and two-way trust with employees, leaders should do routine “stay interviews” with employees. A stay interview format includes asking an employee’s thoughts related to their current state at work. What do they look forward to on a day-to-day basis? What do they dread, if anything, each day at work? What is one thing they would change if they could? Do they need any additional tools or resources to be successful? The format does not need to be complex; ultimately, it just needs to allow for respectful, professional, transparent, and direct communication. It is important to schedule the stay interview in advance and let the employee know what they can expect. A stay interview is not the same thing as a performance evaluation conversation. It should be a separate conversation that allows for open communication without fear of retribution, which will lead to building trust.

In Summary

By building a safe space for communication, listening to feedback and taking appropriate action, learning employee’s communication preferences, communicating in multiple different ways and facilitating stay interviews, a leader will be well on their way to building two-way trust with their employees. As a result, this will bring positive results for the organization.

Make sure to check out LLD’s course catalog for class information that can assist you with building skills for effective communication.

-Amy

References

Forbes. (2021, April 9). 12 Techniques For Fostering Two-Way Trust With Employees. https://www.forbes.com/sites/forbescoachescouncil/2021/04/09/12-techniques-for-fostering-two-way-trust-with-employees/?sh=4ec745853a33

Forbes. (2022, April 19). 10 Ways to Bridge The Communication Gap Across Generations In The Workplace. https://www.forbes.com/sites/forbeshumanresourcescouncil/2022/04/19/10-ways-to-bridge-the-communication-gap-across-generations-in-the-workplace/?sh=7daca56e3889

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