We humans are superior creatures, but we aren’t perfect. To convey our message, we have to talk or communicate. And in a workplace, the messages you deliver, and the messages you receive have to be done properly, otherwise it can lead to a total communication disaster. Internal communications actually plays a very important role in the success of your business. As a leader you must set the example and the standard for great business communication. And you need to do this by paying much heed to the semantics at the workplace and also understanding how all this might affect the culture at a small and large scale. As James Humes has said, “The art of communication lies in the language of leadership”, it is up to the leader to think about how to make workplace communication and business interaction more effective. Effective communication shapes better work culture, and keeps everyone happier. Here are few strategies that you might want to employ in order to deal with the workplace semantics more actionably. Read along to find out more:
(1) You need to define what is appropriate and what is not appropriate – a baseline for workplace communication. To what extent should the communication remain formal and when is it casual? What kind of casual talk is allowed, and when does a person cross the line? How are you supposed to address your superiors and your client? To what extent is workplace humor allowed? What kind of jokes are off limits and which ones are OK? Some of these things should be addressed clearly in the employee handbook too, while much of it is learned through practice and passed on.
(2) As the leader, it is your job to establish the terminology to be used at work. For example, addressing team members as “associates” instead of “employees” can actually manifest a difference. It emphasizes on the value of the employee, instead of merely projecting them as replaceable parts of the corporate industry.
(3) Eliminate the use of weak words like “but”. These kinds of words lead to the downfall of most conversations, without us even realizing that we are even using them. Now, this requires some self-training so as to develop awareness about our own speaking habits. Weak language can block your opportunity for improvement. So, it is important to discover these weaknesses. Muddy language can be just another huge barrier in the workplace.