Most team members want the same thing from their leader: authentic communication. Have you ever been working on a project and been blinded by an omission made by management? Or perhaps you’ve dealt with a sudden change in instructions or expectations. Maybe you’ve had to work on a project where the expectations were not clear and you weren’t even totally sure what you needed to be doing. If you want your team to perform to the best of their ability, you need to prioritize communication from a leadership standpoint. You need to be as open, honest, and authentic as possible to build trust and generate buy-in.
Everyone Wants An Honest Boss
At the end of the day, nobody wants a boss that they don’t know if they can trust. Sometimes, what causes a lack of trust isn’t a lie, but an omission. If you aren’t being fully honest with your team about what you expect from them or if you are leaving out certain project details, you could harm the trust that your team has in you. Which brings us to the next point:
When Communication Breaks Down, Trust Is Lost
When your team isn’t communicating, internally or with leadership, that causes a lack of trust. If you aren’t getting regular updates from the team, that could lead to a lack of trust in your team members. And if your team members can’t get a line of communication with you, they are going to have a difficult time finishing projects successfully. Make sure that you have multiple lines of communication open and that you don’t neglect to meet with your team on a regular basis.
Making Sure Your Team Communicates Effectively
Making sure that your team members can communicate with leadership is key. But you also want to focus on internal communication. Your team members need to be able to communicate with each other. This is more important than ever, since more organizations are making the shift to working with remote employees who may be halfway across the globe. Make sure that your team communicates through multiple channels (such as via email and by a work communication app like Slack) and has regular meetings, preferably at least twice per month. Regular communication ensures that your team members know exactly what to expect from their co-workers.
If you prioritize being an authentic communicator, your tenure as a leader is much more likely to see success. When your team members feel that they can’t communicate with you, or that you aren’t being honest, they are much more likely to be distrustful of management. And when there is a lack of trust in leadership, team members tend not to work as hard, and teams can fall into dysfunction. Promoting strong communication within teams and with leadership starts at the top. You have to make sure that all of your team members are comfortable communicating with you, knowing that you will address any of their concerns.