In an era where job-hopping is at an all-time high, employers are looking for ways to improve retention rates. Aside from salary and compensation benefits, a lack of feedback, recognition and zero decision-making opportunities are major reasons for employee turnover.
If you critically analyze these reasons, you’ll realize that interpersonal communication is at the heart of these problems. This is why organizations need to prioritize a vibrant work culture that includes communication.
Interpersonal communication is how people exchange information, feelings, and meaning through verbal and non-verbal means. It is face-to-face communication that transpires between two or more people. Studies have shown that 55 percent of communication is non-verbal, 38 percent is voice tone, and 7 percent is words. This is why managers need to be observant, as actions speak louder than words.
Interpersonal communication is a critical skill for functioning in the personal and professional sphere. People who master this skill tend to build good relationships and work well with others. Here are tips to improve your business’s interpersonal communication skills.
- Cultivate a Positive Outlook
All businesses have challenges, and the approach to these challenges makes all the difference. Having a positive outlook will help the organization turn challenges into victories. Rather than groaning over a bad situation, a team with a positive mindset will look to see the opportunities embedded in the circumstance.
When a team constantly works with a positive mindset, building synergy across the team becomes easy. The reason for this isn’t far-fetched; people naturally gravitate towards optimistic people. This is why it is always crucial for the team and individuals to focus on things within their control. This attitude is revealed in the encouraging and uplifting communication practiced in the workplace.
- Be Truthful
Being truthful in all conversations and engagement helps you build credibility, and having honest conversations strengthens relationships and establishes integrity. A lie often requires more lies to cover one’s track. Irrespective of the circumstance, it is always best to stick to the truth.
A lie can damage your reputation and could cost you to lose employee loyalty. Often, managers tend to hold back certain important information from employees, assuming it is the best strategy, but it often backfires.
When there are dire circumstances, managers need to find ways to convey information promptly. One such tool that helps this process is using UCaaS. Unified Communications as a Service is an integrated platform that helps keep all communication tools on the same platform. This way, they communicate promptly, and employees can also be kept abreast before things get out of hand.
- Practice Active Listening
Expert communicators have mastered the art of active listening. Remember, it is not just about listening to employees but maintaining eye contact and making the person feel valued. You’d have follow-up questions that show you paid attention when you truly listen.
The more you practice active listening, the more available staff are to you. You’d most likely avoid making costly assumptions when you give room for feedback. By hearing people out, you create the possibility of a more fluid, productive, and long-lasting relationship
- Practice Empathy
Being empathic helps broaden your horizon as you see from other people’s perspectives. It helps you understand people’s pain points and develop a well-rounded view. You show empathy by reflecting the speaker’s thoughts by paraphrasing and asking follow-up questions. Understanding how people feel concerning a matter goes a long way in finding solutions that work for everyone involved.
- Develop Positive Disposition
People and businesses naturally move toward optimistic and forward-thinking people, especially people who are positive in every situation irrespective of the company’s position. Having a positive disposition starts with a grateful mindset that transcends your aura and physical expression. A positive disposition makes the workplace more pleasant for everyone.
- Acknowledge Others
The key to interpersonal communication is focusing on the other person or group. Learn to acknowledge and appreciate the input of other members. This way, they know that their expertise is appreciated and valued.
When you commend employees for how dependable their work is, there’s an incentive to do more. It also makes it easy to approach colleagues when you need help.
It’s All in the Cues
One important aspect of interpersonal communication is body language. Be conscious of how you place your hands, facial expressions, and gestures in meetings. At times, you might be appreciating a colleague, but your disposition and tone might be passing a different message. These actions often precede the words you speak. So, you want to be sure that your body language correlates with your verbal communication.