Take Note

The problems and challenges within an organization are directly related to not only a lack of communication, they’re directly related to the casualness of many conversations. As a company grows, these one-off conversations have the potential to create a level of chaos that is both counterproductive and destructive to organizational advancement and effectiveness.

The Cornerstone of Success

Communication is the cornerstone of your company’s evolution and the direct outcome of growth. So, while every communication doesn’t have to be structured, every conversation can’t be casual.

I see it all the time in family business. The business starts as a small enterprise and the entrepreneur becomes comfortable with communicating in a one-to-one manner throughout the entire company. In that stage of a company’s growth, it represents the quickest and most effective path to results. Then the business grows, and grows some more. Then the business achieves exponential growth. The owner eventually finds that what s/he communicates to one individual is passed through the organization, one person to the next, and by the time it reaches its final destination is a much different message than it was originally. “This isn’t the way it used to be,” they can be heard saying in a frustrated tone. The good news is that the company’s success has fueled a requirement for a more enhanced system of communication. The bad news is that many leaders are so slow to recognize this changing dynamic.

“If communication is so important to the success of any enterprise or relationship, why is it that people are so slow to recognize the changes that have to occur to make it more effective?”

“As a company grows exponentially, the process of communication must evolve as well in order to achieve the intended outcomes and desired results.”

“Communication wasn’t intended to be continuously random.”

Absolute Importance

The evolution and effectiveness of communication within a growing enterprise is based on leaders recognizing the absolute importance of advancing the communication cadence, sequencing and systems. So, what does this look like? Depending on the size of the company, you may find some or all of these options applicable:

  1. Engage team-members/employees one-to-one on a regular basis. Use this time to discuss what has gone well and what hasn’t gone well over a period of time and adjust as needed.
  2. Implement daily and weekly connections among departments and teams that are concise and purposeful. Use this time to connect and communicate on all priorities.
  3. Don’t let communication become bureaucratic or unnecessarily complex. In other words, don’t trade common sense for processes and procedures that make no sense in moving communication forward.
  4. Teach people what effective communication looks like and doesn’t look like specifically.
  5. Create a system for how information should flow through your organization so that communication is based on the required connections between people.

 

#Thoughtstarter

Don’t assume that because someone has reached a certain position or level that they’ve mastered effective communication. Entrepreneurs, owners and senior leaders are often the primary source of communication chaos within their company. This is because they think of and reference communication based on what it was in the past rather than what it needs to be now and into the future.

The expression “if we aren’t growing, we’re dying,” can be heard in the hallways of companies around the world. Highly effective leaders within the most effective organizations give another context to this wisdom that goes like this… “If we aren’t communicating, were dying.”

Make no mistake that what you say matters and people listen.

It’s not about eliminating casual conversations. It’s about recognizing that, at some point, they must evolve and can no longer serve as the primary strategy for effective communication within a company. Growth demands that leaders become more purposeful than casual in their communication.

Be Authentic. Be Purposeful. Make it Meaningful.

Brent

P.S. I would love to hear your thoughts in the comments.