How to improve teamwork skills with communication

 Team communication provides several benefits, including the potential to encourage creativity. Looking for a Team Management Course? Learn how to become a pro in Team Management with our Online Team Management Course.

How to improve teamwork skills with communication

Whether you are in business, retail, healthcare, education or another industry, the odds are good that teamwork makes up part of your day-to-day work life. 

Teamwork skills are essential to your success at work, no matter your industry or job title. Working well with clients, colleagues, managers and other people in your workplace can help you complete tasks efficiently while creating an enjoyable environment both for yourself and others. 

When teamwork goes well, it distributes the work among professionals in ways that make it easier to reach goals and excel in the industry (as they say – teamwork makes the dream work). Good communication skills are integral to any team’s success and the overall success of the business.

You also don’t need to be in a certain role to be able to help your team by improving communication, know that you can still leverage the ripple effect of opening communication lines–even if you work remotely. According to Daniel Juday, a leadership, people and culture expert, better communication doesn’t have to be bound by geography, time, or role.

The importance of good communication for teamwork

Team communication is one of the most fundamental aspects of collaboration. Communication in teams is more than just efficient work. It allows everyone on the team to be educated on any topic that may affect their work. Moreover, it develops trust, builds camaraderie among the team members, boosts morale, and helps employees stay engaged in the workplace.

According to David Grossman in “The Cost of Poor Communications,” a survey of 400 companies with 100 000 employees each found that poor communication between employees cost each company $ 62.4 million annually on average.

Team communication provides several other benefits, including the potential to encourage creativity, enhance employee engagement, and increase productivity.

The benefits highlight how essential communication is to the workplace. And this is why business leaders must invest in promoting a culture of strong team communication.

How to improve communication skills within your team

In this article we want to look at how to improve teamwork by communicating better, more openly, and with trust.

Communication and team-building go hand in hand, directly influencing and affecting the other. Excellent communication in successful work teams is more likely when an organisation prioritises teambuilding and gives employees the opportunity to connect with each other and the organisation. 

Here are some tips to increase the effectiveness of your team’s communication:

Encourage openness and transparency

Openness and transparency play valuable roles in the importance of communication in teamwork, as they facilitate honest conversations and trust-building. When team members can openly discuss issues, ask for help or clarity, and trust each other and their leaders, they will feel empowered in their roles and as members of the team.

Respectfulness

Respecting the opinions of others, regardless of whether they are oppositional to your own, is a fundamental part of an effective communication strategy. A workplace that values respect encourages its employees to express their opinions and ideas, listen to one another, and be cooperative when working together. 

People will be more open to communicating with you if you convey respect for them and their ideas. Simple actions like using a person’s name, making eye contact, and actively listening when a person speaks will make your team members feel appreciated. Because of the role respect plays in the importance of group communication, the entire team can benefit from a lower stress, more positive, and welcoming environment as a result.

Listening

Another important part of communication is listening. You must be able to listen to the ideas and concerns of your peers to be an effective team member. By asking questions for clarification, demonstrating concern, and using nonverbal cues, you can show your team that you care and that you understand their ideas or concerns.

Reliability

You want to be a reliable team member so that your co-workers can trust you with time-sensitive tasks and company information. Make sure you stick to deadlines and complete any assigned work. This will help you gain your colleagues’ trust.

Define each role

When each team member’s role is clearly defined, they understand precisely what is expected of them, their duties, and what they need to do to succeed. Having clearly defined roles positively impacts an organisation because it results in better cooperation and higher productivity, as employees are aware of precisely how they can contribute in their positions.

Allow two-way feedback

Feedback should always be a two-way street, and managers should welcome opportunities to grow and learn from their employees. When employees are given the ability to express concerns or doubts to management, it is more likely that solutions will be found and problems will be solved. Without two-way feedback, leaders are in the dark about their employees’ needs or issues, evolving into something much more damaging. Two-way feedback is therefore instrumental in maintaining effective team communication skills.

Conflict Management

An important teamwork skill is being able to mediate problems between team members. You need to be able to negotiate with your team members to settle disputes and make sure everyone is happy with the team’s choices.

Prioritise team-building

Give employees the opportunity to get to know each other outside of work and build deeper connections through team-building activities and events. Doing so encourages conversation in a lower-stress scenario and allows team members to build trust and foster a more united company culture. Regardless of the size of the team, there are plenty of great ideas when it comes to team-building activities.

Understand diversity

When a team with people from different backgrounds, nationalities, languages and beliefs collaborate something special and innovative can be created. In order for this uniqueness to arise, it’s important to respect and understand each individual. For example: use inclusive language and avoid references that can be alienating for people with a different career path and experiences.

Practice Empathy

Empathetic communication is a way of adapting your style to communicate with others the way they like, rather than the way you want. Be mindful in each interaction, and be sure to consider the following:

  • WHAT the other party wants from the interaction
  • WHY they want it
  • HOW they want to interact

By considering these factors before engaging in a conversation, you can be sure to adapt your communication to best suit their needs so you can each get the most out of the conversation.

Conclusion

Communication is the backbone of an efficient workforce, and implementing practices that combat communication issues and encourage healthy conversation is essential for a team’s success. To facilitate such practices, try to carve out time to gather feedback from employees, create alignment amongst team members, and collaborate with others. Improving workplace communication takes diligence and consistency and can be achieved through utilising robust communication strategies.

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