Workplace Communication - Edited and Revised Transcript
by Alan Seid
Hi, this is Alan Seid, founder of Cascadia Workshops and the Blackbelt Communication Skills Online Program.
Most of us spend so much of our time at work that it’s incredibly important that the relationships that we have at work are really working well.
When our workplace communication is not flowing smoothly, so many
things go wrong. Great ideas don’t get implemented. We miss amazing
opportunities and we miss possibilities that we could co-create with our
co-workers when the relationships are working well and there are clear
channels of communication.
I had a business owner once hire me to train his entire staff of forty people because he wanted to enjoy going back to work and he wanted to enjoy leaving work. It was all about the quality of the relationships. When the relationships weren’t working he didn’t enjoy even showing up at work anymore.
So with effective workplace communication we get the satisfaction and the peace of mind that comes from interpersonal harmony and effectiveness.
There are a lot of things that I could talk about in terms of workplace communication. Running effective meetings, employee motivation, professional development, and customer service skills. There are so many things that happen in the workplace.
But I’ll share with you one
insight that’s very high leverage that’s overlooked by most of the
workplaces that I’ve encountered. That insight is correctly applying the
use of gratitude and appreciation in the workplace.
However, when I mention gratitude and appreciate we need to be careful that we’re not using it as a way of manipulating other people to repeat the same actions. When we’re using gratitude and appreciation the primary purpose of it is that we’re just celebrating that someone did something that contributed to life, that met needs. They did something that worked.
The secondary purpose, however, is that it gives people feedback. Anytime we speak, anytime we act, we want our words and our actions to contribute, to serve life in some way.
And so the gratitude and
appreciation gives us that feedback to know that we’ve hit the mark.
By getting that feedback, that also gives us more energy, more motivation to continue to keep going.
When I try really hard for something and I
stretch and I do something because I think it will be special for you,
or I really care, and continually over time I don’t get the feedback
that my actions are serving, I don’t get the sense that other people
appreciate it, I lose the motivation to keep trying.
Some of the most successful business owners I know use gratification and appreciation as a way of either opening or closing their meetings.
example, the business owner I mentioned earlier will start the meetings
with all his managers with one round of gratitude and appreciation. It
doesn’t necessarily need to be toward each other in the room, but it
could just be something that I enjoyed about my day, or one thing that I
am grateful for.
This accomplishes a couple of things. One, is it starts to tune people’s minds to what is working rather than what is not working. We don’t want to ignore the things that aren’t working, we want to acknowledge them, and we also want to stay connected to the things that are working so that we’re not constantly in a negative space.
The other thing that gratitude and appreciation accomplishes when we touch base with it regularly is this; it’s an expression that I learned from one of my business coaches. He said, “What you appreciate appreciates.”
What you appreciate grows in value.
It increases. So if we can put our attention there, then those things
that are working will grow and improve and we can start to bring that
gratitude and appreciation to more and more of our day.
I just want to note that gratitude and appreciation is also one of the keys to employee motivation.
But again, we want to be really clear about our intentions that it’s not about manipulating the same behavior over and over.
Once people know they’re being manipulated, it stops being fun.
So we want to make sure that it’s strictly that we’re celebrating that needs were met, that their actions contributed to our needs, they contributed to the organization functioning well, they contributed to customers and clients getting what they came for.
So we’re simply giving that
acknowledgement, that gratitude and appreciation, not trying to
manipulate a specific behavior.
When you learn how to express gratitude and appreciation using a very clear observation, a very clear expression of what needs were met and how you felt about it, that’s a key component to employee recognition.
So workplace communication is a
huge topic and I just wanted to fit this tip, this particular piece,
in this video for you.
Check out some of the other videos for more tips and pointer, or check out our free video training series at BlackbeltCommunicationSkills.com.