Employees’ communication abilities have an impact on their overall performance regardless of the nature of their work. It also affects their personal and organisation’s image.
Communication competence refers to the skills involved in disseminating messages both orally or in writing.
Poor message delivery, be it a letter, an e-mail, a phone call or public presentations, creates a loathsome image of yourself and your organisation. It increases the chances of having your expertise and credibility being doubted.
Some people harbour the false belief that all that matters is the content of their message and not how they communicate.
This is suicidal.
Due to lack of requisite communication competence, some deliverables are delayed.
For instance, it takes unnecessarily long to draft a one-page memo or report due to lack of know-how or confidence in their writing.
Poor performance rating is the sad consequence.
Employees with weak communication skills often fail to contribute to organisational growth.
Participating in meetings, discussions and other communicate-related activities scares them stiff.
Often, they fail to seize opportunities to showcase their abilities or offer their brilliant ideas. At worst, some decline offers to facilitate vital meetings or ceremonies.
Aware of their deficiencies, some employees feel defeated even before they communicate their suggestions.
Oftentimes, persuading team mates or superiors to adopt a proposal requires skilful use of communication tools, including flawless command of business language. Most workplaces in the country use English.
A good idea lost in a myriad of language and communication lapses reduces its acceptability. Either superiors will dismiss your idea outright or say the proposal will be considered in the next meeting.
This diplomatic dismissal demoralises workers in a big way. When this happens, chances are you failed to communicate.
Not all rejections are a result of poor communication, though.
To some extent, your credibility and acceptability as a professional depends on the quality of communication.
Communicating perfectly is, therefore, vital for your career. Ever wonder why many job vacancy announcements stress on excellent communication skills regardless of the nature of the job?
Regardless of your career level, it is never too late to embark on a communication skills improvement programme. Self-study works effectively, especially if you know your deficiencies.
Seeking assistance from a communication expert does help. Experts help in diagnosing your communication weaknesses and recommending an effective remedial programme.
In the workplace, supervisors may not detect how communication shortfalls of their staff affect their performance.
Some bosses may not realise that delayed delivery of reports and other deliverables by their juniors are a result of distressing struggles in communicating the necessary content. The workers sometimes miss deadlines because they cannot find the best way to convey the messages.
Therefore, organisations need to carry out communication competence audits.
One way is to conduct surveys to detect the real communication abilities of their team members and see if they can link that to elements of the employees’ performance.
As they do this, the organisations will realise that communication deficiencies is not only hazardous to employees’ performance but also a risk to corporate and public relations.
Communication is a skill. It requires continuous learning. Even communication professionals have to continue acquiring new skills.
You or your team should also endeavour to enhance your communication competence.