We’re always looking out for the coolest new software to improve collaboration within teams but sometimes a few simple productivity hacks can go a long way. One of the best things you can do to collaborate better is to improve your communication skills.
Keeping that in mind, here are four communication tricks that will build collaboration in your team.
1. Get Organized
These days most of our communication is online. There are so many emails sent every day, so many documents being sent back and forth, and revised and edited. There are meetings being requested, articles being shared, and ideas being voiced.
It’s incredible how much data we share with each other on a daily basis. The problem is if all of this information isn’t well-organized, collaboration becomes inefficient and ineffective.
Think about how much time you spend searching your mail for a task you were supposed to do. Think about how many times you sent the wrong version of a document in.
Now think about how much tougher it would be for someone else to sift through your communications when you spend so much time on it yourself. Getting organized means everyone in your team knows exactly where to look for something and where to put things in.
2. Ensure Continuous Communication
With all the options available to us to get in touch with each other, making mistakes because of a lack of communication is a sin. Gone are the days where you can say, “Oh I couldn’t get your thoughts on this so I didn’t finish it.”
Continuous communication eliminates these mistakes. It ensures that everyone is on the same page. It forms bonds and reassures group members. It gives everyone a sense of being an important part of the team.
3. Make Sure Written Communication Is Clear
Ok, so we eliminated lack of communication but it’s still shocking how many instances of miscommunication there are. We need to realize that the way we communicate in-person doesn’t translate well to the written word.
The body language, slangs and abbreviations we use when talking face-to-face with someone just can’t be communicated in email. We assume that others know what they mean and that they get our tone, but that’s often not the case in emails. Make sure whatever you write down (or type out) and pass along is professional and makes sense.
Keep your emails short and to the point. If possible, list things in bullet points to make it easier for the other party to read. Don’t ramble and don’t use flowery language. This isn’t a story writing competition.
4. Don’t Be Afraid To Use Tech
It’s actually imperative that you use tech. Setting up a system with the right tools and apps can boost collaboration and productivity massively.
There are a lot of tools available. The key is to find the ones you and your team are most comfortable using. Each app has its pros and cons.
Some communication tools integrate well with other apps, like your content marketing tools, blogging platforms or project management systems. You can set it up so that your communications across all these different apps are collected and organized in one place.
Just remember, when you find something you like, get everyone to start using it regularly. Many times people just revert back to the old-school way of doing things, and your subscription goes to waste. Get your team into the habit of using the technology.
And once you have your technology in place, stick to it!
Simply making the communication within your team a priority and continually improving will vastly improve collaboration and productivity.
So, what are you doing to improve communication in your team?