Communication is one of those areas that people talk about as being really important, and it is. Yet sometimes leaders and managers fail to communicate effectively. So what is the real cost of failing to communicate effectively?
One thing that most people seem to be short on these days, despite all of the advances in technology, is time. Worse still, no-one can buy more of it. We all have the same allocation per week, per day, per year. Imagine for example you fail to effectively communicate your requirements for a piece of work you have asked your team to do. They will spend valuable time and energy delivering something that is not of value. And as you are paying them for doing it, you are adversely impacting on the bottom line financial results.
People want leaders to lead and provide clear direction to others. When they procrastinate or avoid taking decisions, they create doubt and this doubt can lead to a loss of confidence among your followers. It can also result in a loss of confidence from external stakeholders.
People only follow people who they believe have credibility. How you communicate with others has a direct impact on your credibility. For example, if you don’t treat people well and are even perhaps off hand with them, your credibility diminishes.
If you are involved in delivering services, being a poor communicator and specifically not listening can actually result in lost business opportunities. For example, professional services organisations like accountants and lawyers work hard on building client relationships. They are looking out and listening for unmet needs to which their firm may be able to help them find a solution.
One of the biggest complaints people have is that they don’t know what is going on. Failing to keep people informed as to what is going on and the possible implications for them, especially in times of uncertainty, can result in the loss of key staff.
Being an effective communicator is not an optional extra but a key ingredient in being a highly successful leader.
Duncan Brodie of Goals and Achievements helps professional people become great leaders and managers. Sign up for his free audio e-course Leadership Success at www.goalsandachievements.co.uk.
Since 2006 I’ve worked with in excess of 8,000 accountants and professionals in workshops, seminars and one to one helping them land their next jobs and become better leaders, presenters and business partners. Before that I spent 25 years in accountancy climbing the career ladder from Payments Clerk to FD. I’m a CIMA Fellow, Certified Professional Coach and Team Coach Facilitator.