The culture of relations within the company, the transparency of the hierarchy, the ability to delegate authority and treat errors correctly are the necessary, necessary elements of teamwork. A good leader is, at the same time, a mentor who trusts his people. Why is the communication culture at the enterprise so important for its effective work? Anya Pabst, the head of the Russian branch of BEITRAINING, answers this question.
According to studies, many managers overestimate their communication skills and are confident that they communicate with their subordinates in an understandable and friendly manner, although their employees would not agree with this. This is not surprising: most people tend to assess their skills too positively, but when it comes to internal corporate communication, such a mistake by the leader should once again lead him to the idea of monitoring how communication is built between management and ordinary employees.
Communicative skills in relations between external and internal clients (that is, colleagues and subordinates) of an enterprise are of particular importance in our age of new technologies, when requests and tasks should be formulated clearly and concisely, phone calls are reduced, and a well-written email assumes that the addressee will spend on reading it no more than 12 seconds. So the value of qualitative indicators in communication increases markedly, compared with quantitative indicators. The way the management and employees of the enterprise communicate directly affects its success.
The success of the company depends on a well-thought-out organization and healthy relationships in the team. It is the leader who is most interested in ensuring that the tasks are completed efficiently and on time. But the well-known principle “if you want the job to be done well, do it yourself” is not suitable for a leader who wants to trust his subordinates and achieve results. He should be able to set and correctly explain the tasks, provide clear communication in the process of their implementation, and also pay attention to the discussion of the task based on the results of its implementation. The latter also presupposes a developed culture of attitude to errors in the enterprise.
The company's communication culture pays more and more attention to such a concept as effective communication. It implies a communication scheme in which there is a place for empathy, curiosity and respect, but at the same time - rationality and objectivity. The situation is even more complicated where communication goes beyond e-mails, for example, a telephone conversation includes such important aspects for a contact as the voice timbre, duration and time of a call, the ability to quickly respond to questions, etc. The most multi-level is communication with personal contact, when the visual aspect becomes important: the interlocutor pays attention to gestures, eyes and facial expressions.
For subordinates and colleagues with whom you need to communicate every business day, possibly for many years, the same rules apply, and sometimes more complex ones, when internal (underwater) currents in the team and (sometimes negative) interaction experience are taken into account . Based on all of the above, communication at the enterprise is not just a way of transmitting information, but a much more voluminous concept.
Despite all efforts to concentrate on rational aspects and discussion of working issues, almost any meeting will include personal and emotional moments between the participants. Their intensity will be affected by work stress, lack of time, team relationships and many other factors. This is neither good nor bad - it is a given, determined by the characteristics of human communication, which need to be understood and, if possible, wrapped up for your own benefit.
Successful communication is based on two of its most important aspects - rational arguments and emotional states. If we are talking about communication between the boss and the subordinate, it is natural that great responsibility falls on the first one, responsible not only for himself, but also for the employees entrusted to him.
Management, interaction, comprehension are the keywords that determine the management activity in any enterprise. The effective distribution of the time required to devote to each of the above areas of responsibility determines a competent leader. If the manager feels a lack of time, this is the main sign that he does not properly distribute responsibilities - both his own and those of his subordinates.
Many managers often do not see the difference between the concept of "delegate authority" and "push problems to another." On the other hand, managers do not trust employees, believing that they themselves can do a better job. ” In any case, this leads to violations of communication and the work process, reduces the effectiveness of the company and the trust of subordinates.
If the report on the fulfillment of the assignment is far from the real state of affairs, if employees are afraid to admit to their superiors in miscalculations, they will try to justify or shift the blame on colleagues, suppliers and other external factors - a similar situation occurs when there are serious problems with the communication culture in the company. If the head of the company fears for his authority, he does not admit his own mistakes, is ready for a lot to save face and does not notice that the desire to hide mistakes does not strengthen, but undermines his authority, he should seriously think about reviewing his views on team leadership. Confidence on the part of subordinates all this definitely will not add. If the head can openly admit a miscalculation, employees trust him more and are not afraid to admit their own mistakes.
Hiding mistakes is a dangerous practice in a company. Indeed, many of them can be corrected immediately after occurrence and almost without additional costs, but only if higher-level employees or colleagues are informed correctly and on time. More often, it happens so that errors are ignored until the damage caused leads to obvious difficulties and financial problems. Their timely identification and elimination is promoted, first of all, by an open type of management and properly built communication.
If the task is simply “shoved” onto the subordinate without explanation, he does not receive specific instructions and does not know what the result of his efforts should be, then you should not expect effective work and a responsible attitude from the person. But if the authority is delegated with clear instructions to carry out a specific assignment / task, then the employee knows and understands what, when and by what means he has to do. And I’m ready to answer for the result. The leader must reserve the strategic aspects of managing the company, in fact, he decides what and who can be assigned, which of the employees will cope, and will cope well.
There are four degrees of delegation of authority. They are in four concepts - to manage, direct, support and transmit. A good habit for any leader should be the desire in communication with employees to move from management to direction, support and, ultimately, the transfer of authority.
The first step - management - implies the least degree of responsibility of the employee. He automatically follows the instructions without showing his own initiative: he places the goods on shelves or orders the necessary sizes in the warehouse. The second step - direction - implies that the leader gives more general tasks, the execution time of which is possible.
The third and fourth stages - support and transfer - imply the maximum degree of responsibility of the employee. He is responsible not only for the process, but also for the result. The leader supports, advises, what to do in difficult cases, but trusts the employee to make decisions himself.
The key concepts in delegation of authority are trust and transparent communication. The leader must trust his employee - it is not in vain that he was once hired and selected for the current job. And the employee must trust his supervisor, for example, in that he relies on his opinion on a particular issue and subsequently asks him exactly what he instructed to do. This is the basis of the life of a healthy team, as direct performers most often adopt the work style set by the leadership.
Many people are guided by this principle. Ideally, the competent delegation of authority and the distribution of duties should create an atmosphere in the company where each employee knows his area of responsibility and performs tasks, being responsible for the result to his direct management. In practice, managers often forget about the laws of logic, and therefore, instead of the work done, they get the opposite result.
So, often the tasks themselves are not clearly formulated in the lips of the leadership. If the employee has not received a clear idea of what is required of him, it is not surprising that the result will not suit the management. When giving a specific task, it is necessary to clearly stipulate the rights of the employee, since the powers of the employee within this task cannot be contained in the standard regulations and job descriptions. Therefore, it is impossible to hope that the subordinate, taking as a basis the list of his official duties, independently determine the set of his powers in the framework of a specific work.
Supervisors often sin by issuing instructions without paying attention to the responsibilities of a particular employee. The problem is pushed onto the one who turned up by the arm. But the employee of the sales area should not perform the work of a loader, even if the manager demands to immediately unload the goods arrived. Of course, situations are different, but when confusion in responsibilities becomes not the exception, but the rule, serious problems in the team should be expected.
Many questions arise if the task is given verbally and is not fixed on paper or in the computer. The manager may forget something, and then make a complaint to the employee. In turn, the employee may also lose sight of something if he himself did not write down his words for the manager immediately after receiving the assignment. A written order will save you from misunderstanding and possible problems.
The habit of hiding errors and opaque communication has two reasons. On the one hand, the atmosphere in the team is formed by the management policy and the attitude of the authorities to their own miscalculations. Another aspect is the features of socialization of the employees themselves, the unspoken rules adopted in society. If a society from a school bench practices collective responsibility for mistakes, people subconsciously strive to hide shortcomings rather than fix them, which allows them to remain in a comfort zone: not to increase professionalism, not to take responsibility for decisions, not to learn from unsuccessful examples.
If the error is followed by sanctions, the guilty employee may leave the company, and his successor will likely stumble over the same rake. A constructive attitude towards errors will allow us to discuss each of them with other members of the team and reduce the likelihood of its recurrence. Such a policy helps to reduce staff turnover, staff involvement and the accumulation of experience. A competent chef gradually turns into a mentor with excellent communication skills, inclined to discuss mistakes, instruct and praise for achievements, rather than scolding and punishing for mistakes. Trustful relationships in the team, support for initiatives and transparency of corporate processes turn errors into valuable practical experience, on the basis of which professional qualities can be improved. Trust, responsibility, transparency of communication within the company will help to create and maintain the most important thing - the team on which the well-being of your company depends.
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