Communication improves motivation

Communication improves motivation

A few of them are miserly about dishing out information with a fear that they might lose control over their people.

On the other hand, like a sponge, they would like to absorb all and sundry information about others from their people. Such a double standard will boomerang on those who do not share information with others. For such managers ‘communication’ means keeping their people in the dark.

Some managers think putting up a notice is the end of sharing information. This is the ‘communication” technique they are used to.

Then there are those who go on sending small memos to their people believing that more the merrier. They do no think what the recipients feel about these notes. Those who suffer from an excess of memos eventually accept that it is part of the ‘management’ style of their boss and put up with these, as they dare not complain.

Such memos, sent on matters of trivia or importance, fail to have any impact. There are managers whose telephone call is dreaded by the subordinates. Such a call is invariably to fire someone for an error of omission or commission. This is the ‘communication’, which sends chills down the spine of the juniors. A few managers think they should call only those subordinates who have to be given a dressing down.

Personal touch
Communication is an art as well as science. One might know all the rules for good communication but fail to use these properly. Some are born communicators whose very body language impresses the subordinates.

A few managers do not wait for a meeting but go around informing their people on matters of importance. They are the blessed ‘walk around managers”, a rare breed indeed. This is the best way of communicating, if that is feasible. That is because the person who receives the information can also ask for clarifications. The people who look forward to such interactions for mutual benefit appreciate such a personal touch.

A formal or an informal meeting, preferably in small groups of about twenty persons, serves as a good platform to communicate, up and down. The manager may make a briefing and throw the meeting for comments, criticisms and suggestions.

He can then communicate with his superiors after getting a direct feedback. In a department, the manager or supervisor may have structured meetings with his people on a daily/weekly/monthly schedule. In fact, some of these meetings could be held in a conference room or even outside to make such meetings meaningful and in a relaxed environment free from the daily pressures of meeting schedules.

Each manager / supervisor has to develop his / her own style of communication with the people concerned. Without a proper communication the goals of the department / organization cannot be appreciated by everyone. Complex matters can be understood only when there is a one-to-one communication. The more time is spent on communication the better for improved understanding, cooperation and efficiency. People would like to know what is happening before a notice is put up or they get such information from the grapevine.

Communication is a way of impressing upon the employees in an organization that the management cares for them and that they are treated as partners in progress.  Such sharing of information, through a good communication system, is a sure way of bringing people together for the common good. This is certainly a confidence building measure as far as the employees are concerned. Thus communication serves a powerful motivator for the employees to give their best.

(The writer is a Consultant in Quality, Management and HRD)

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