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Two-Way Communication – Significance and Best Practices
Communication is regarded as the most crucial part of any organization. Establishing a good working atmosphere is critical so employees can offer their best effort. Communication is crucial for driving high-performing teams and a successful organization regardless of your business’s size and industry.
Your company’s success is inextricably linked to communication. Employees, employers, clients, and hundreds of other stakeholders exchange messages around the clock. However, communication does not always imply dialogue. Indeed, much business communication consists of one-way communication intended to convey information. Meanwhile, organizations frequently overlook the importance of maintaining two-way communication with employees. Two-way communication fosters trust in the workplace and boosts job satisfaction, productivity, and engagement. Employee performance, and consequently corporate success, is directly influenced by how firms communicate with their employees.
What is two-way communication, and what are its benefits?
Two-way communication is typically defined as communication between two parties that is shared back and forth. It is the exchange of information and feedback between a sender and a receiver. Two-way communication can be vocal or nonverbal, taking several forms, but it is never a monologue. It is possible to converse without the other person being present. The most critical consideration is that both sides communicate on the same platform.
Two-way communication can be compared to a tennis match. A game begins when the opposing player serves and returns a ball. A tennis match is only feasible when a ball is thrown back and forth. Playing alone on a tennis court does not constitute a game and will not entice an audience to watch.
Two-way communication is considered in the workplace when a company or organization allows its employees to join the conversation and listens to their feedback, opinions, and thoughts. So, the same metaphor of a tennis game may be utilized here, except that communication occurs in the workplace.
Two-way communication does not usually imply face-to-face (or, these days, screen-to-screen) interactions. It also does not entail only discussion between managers and subordinates.
Here are just a few examples of how two-way communication might emerge in the workplace:
- Horizontal two-way communication: horizontal two-way communication refers to communication between personnel of the same rank.
- Vertical two-way communication: This sort of two-way communication occurs between a boss and his or her staff.
- Asynchronous two-way communication: Dialogue does not always involve face-to-face interaction. Incorporating a question or survey into your asynchronous interactions is an excellent approach to spark conversation.
- Instantaneous two-way communication: Texting workers via employee SMS internal communication is an example of instantaneous two-way communication. If you take this path, use a high-performance employee text messaging solution and adhere to SMS content best practices.
Two-way communication is all about trust and empowerment. Building this form of communication can provide numerous benefits to your organization. Increased employee engagement, statistically proven superior job productivity, and team cohesion. Here are some of the most important advantages to remember:
1. Better job satisfaction
Employee retention benefits from two-way communication. As per multiple surveys, most employees believe empathy is critical to employee retention. The more heard and respected employees feel, the more likely they are to stay with their company. For businesses, happy employees = retaining professionals = success. Moreover, two-way communication has the potential to affect staff recruitment. Employees are your finest brand ambassadors, telling people if your company’s culture and internal communication are excellent or terrible.
2. Enhanced employee engagement
Employee engagement is increased when there is two-way communication. Employees are more likely to be inspired to achieve their best when they understand their value to the firm and feel that their opinion is heard. Employees make or break a company’s success. According to a recent Global Human Capital Trends survey, 93% of respondents believed that a sense of belonging elevates an organization’s performance. As a result, a highly engaged workforce contributes to a company’s success.
3. More job productivity
Greater knowledge of responsibilities, tasks, and projects results from clear communication. As a result, there are fewer misconceptions and roadblocks to completion, leading to higher productivity. According to McKinsey research, organizations with engaged employees enhance productivity by 25%. Employees can chat on numerous channels, seek clarifications, inform others, and provide feedback when there is free-flowing two-way communication. This also makes it easier for managers to direct and teach personnel, increasing production rates.
Best practices to encourage two-way communication in the organization
Recognizing the advantages of two-way communication is critical. But you might wonder, “How do I actually put this type of communication into practice in the workplace?” Don’t worry about it. We’ll go through some simple two-way communication best practices that you can easily include in your organization.
1. Determining the right channels
The channels and instruments you employ to facilitate two-way communication are only as effective as they are. Take stock of your existing communication channels and determine which methods of communication are favored by staff. Once you’ve determined what works, improve your existing internal communication channels or adopt new technologies as needed.
For example, if employees are the most vocal in the OKR software used by the organization, consider encouraging two-way interactions with weekly surveys. If your company newsletter receives much attention, use it to get more employee input.
2. Establishing a culture of feedback
To promote two-way communication effectively, you must establish a feedback culture in the company. After adopting the appropriate feedback tools and channels, you should constantly collect employee input while encouraging managers to provide upward feedback.
Regular employee surveys and wellness check-ins should be undertaken. Furthermore, leaders and managers should directly encourage feedback. This includes allowing time for questions and answers during weekly stand-ups and town halls.
3. Establishing transparency and empathy
You wouldn’t want to open out to someone you know is critical and judgmental. Your staff doesn’t either. As a result, demonstrating empathy, sincerity, and transparency in your communications is an important strategy to stimulate discourse.
So, how do you visibly display these abilities? To begin, avoid corporate jargon and language that portrays coolness or disinterest. Instead, utilize more straightforward, uncomplicated language in your internal correspondence.
To establish a culture of two-way communication and gain more insights into this, book a consultation call with the experts today.