Communication breakdown in the workplace is one of the biggest challenges for the business and its employees.
Big or small, every workplace is made up of different types of people coming from different backgrounds. Each individual has a different set of skills and prefers communicating styles.
Figuring out how to prevent communication breakdown in the workplace requires an understanding of the communication barriers. In this article, we will discuss the strategies to overcome communication breakdowns at the workplace.
What Is Communication Breakdown?
A communication breakdown is defined as the failure to communicate with the other in the organization.
Communication breakdown can happen in several ways - from avoiding a direct conversation with the manager to misunderstanding because of the different conversion styles.
With the help of the SoundWave communication assessment, we were able to pinpoint three major reasons behind the workplace communication breakdown.
Missing Framework: A workplace is a curation of different people coming from different backgrounds. This means people may perceive others differently than you do. The difference in communication style is one of the top reasons for the communication breakdown in the workplace.
Lack Of Empathy: Empathy can be defined as knowing the other person’s state of mind and being affected by how they feel. It is a way in which people connect with others socially. When we lack empathy for others in the workplace, there is a communication breakdown.
Lack Of Self Awareness: Sometimes, a lack of self-awareness can also result in communication breakdown. When people talk to you, you must not always take their words at their word value; you must try to understand the true meaning under the surface. This can only happen if you are aware of what is happening around you.
Strategies To Overcome Communication Breakdown
Putting things in place to end the communication breakdown at the workplace might seem like a large task, but there are some simple things you can do to ensure communication never causes problems in your business.
1. Assess How People Are Currently Communicating
It isn't easy to see the flow of communication when you are with the flow. Take a step back, and see what kind of communication is happening in your company. This will help you audit the communication flow, find gaps, and illuminate a path forward.
2. Make Communication The Core Part Of Your Culture
Communication is a skill that only a few have. So hire for it like you would for any other. Look for people who share the same communication style that you are trying to foster in your organization. If you are transparent about goals, challenges, and your vision, you will end up with people who recognize its importance.
3. Clarify The Chain Of Reporting
Everyone must be aware of whom to report to. This might seem obvious, but it is one of the major reasons behind the communication breakdown at the workplace. Assign one person in charge of overseeing what others are doing and keeping track of their daily work. Furthermore, ensure that people are aware of who they should be going to with issues and queries.
4. Create A Safe Space For Sharing Ideas
We must understand that most people are good at sharing ideas or voicing concerns in front of other people. Who knows, their idea might be a game-changer for the organization. Offering a space where people can share their ideas can be a great way to encourage them to start speaking their minds and concerns.
5. Use Team Building
When people get to know other people personally, the professional ones become a bit easier. Team building is a great way to break the ice and get to know each other. And it doesn’t have to be a weekend getaway. You can spend some time after office hours sharing a drink or two.
Communication breakdown is the sad truth of any organization. As we have already mentioned, a pope of different cultures, backgrounds, and languages form the organization. Some might be comfortable talking with the stranger, while some don't want to leave their comfort circle.
Communication breakdown can be solved if we can build strong relationships among the employees. This article has discussed different methods you can use to keep your employees engaged and avoid communication breakdowns.