The quality and consistency of your internal team communications have the power to change your business for the better or the worse. With more fluid, clearer forms of interaction, your team members will collaborate more effectively and improve overall productivity. With lapses in timing, phrasing, and clarity, your entire operation could collapse.
So what steps can you take to improve internal team communications?
Diagnose Potential Problems
The first thing you should do is take a moment to diagnose potential problems.
Have you noticed anything going wrong in your organization that can be traced back to communication inefficiency? Is there a measurable metric that has dropped off due to a specific type of communication problem? If so, this is your chance to apply specific fixes to whatever problem ails you.
For example, if you’ve noticed an increase in customer churn, it could be a signal that your customer service agents aren’t clear about their responsibilities or that they aren’t handling customer support communications in an adequate way.
Revisiting your scripts, SOPs, team meeting protocols, and other customer service department internal communications could help abate the issue.
Establish Strong Leaders
Whether it’s conscious, unconscious, or a mix of both, people tend to mimic the style and approach of their leaders.
Accordingly, it pays to establish strong leadership throughout your organization to set a standard for effective communication. If your leaders consistently communicate, and they communicate in clear, concise ways, they’ll set a powerful example that all the rest of your employees can follow.
There are two approaches that can help you here.
- First, you can prioritize effective communicators when considering promotions and when hiring new leadership candidates. If someone consistently offers clarity and focused messaging, they should have a better chance of getting into a leadership position than a less effective counterpart.
- Second, you can provide more training and education to your existing leaders. Communication courses and seminars, along with deliberate practice, can turn almost anyone into an effective communicator.
Create Multiple Communication Channels (And Use Them Appropriately)
Make use of many different communication channels. Different communication channels offer different strengths and weaknesses, and can be used in different contexts to communicate better.
If all these tools are available to your employees, and they know how to use each one to its fullest potential, your internal communications are going to be much stronger.
With the help of digital signage software, you can display almost any kind of visual or text you want — and you can rotate through various different messages on your digital signs. Throughout the office, your screens can provide consistent reminders, advisements of current conditions, instructions, updates, and more. It’s an easy way to get everyone in the workplace on the same page.
Email is one of the most common forms of workplace communication because it’s permanent, instant, and written. However, it’s not the best platform for an ongoing dialogue, nor is it ideal for expressing complex ideas.
Chat platforms make it easy to ask quick questions and enjoy a reciprocal dialogue, but they can also be distracting. Nobody wants to be pulled into chats all day, but this is an effective communication tool when you use it to its fullest extent.
Calls and video conferences are good for coordinating many different people and holding complex dialogues. However, they tend to be time consuming, and they can quickly go off the rails if you have too many participants. They should be used sparingly and with intentionality.
Even social media has a place in your internal communications strategy. When used correctly, it can facilitate stronger bonds between your employees and provide an informal, easy way to reach someone.
Create Consistent Workflows for Project and Task Management
How are people supposed to communicate about high-level projects and low-level tasks?
For example, is there a template you can use to describe a project? Who is responsible for communicating about the details of a project? When an employee completes a task, what information should they give about the task completion?
If you don’t have clear workflows and protocols for project and task management, it’s quickly going to turn to chaos, since each individual will bring their own style and approach to the group.
Strive for a consistent process that everyone can follow.
Onboard and Train Your New Hires
Onboarding and training is a critical opportunity to teach employees about the fundamentals of effective internal communication.
Set expectations for when and how they’re supposed to communicate and consider providing additional education and training to any new hires that seem to be struggling.
Utilize Team-Building Events
Team-building events are an excellent opportunity to improve communication skills between your employees.
During these events, employees are usually tasked with some sort of competitive or collaborative challenge that requires them to communicate with each other in order to succeed. It’s excellent communication practice that can reveal critical weaknesses. Perhaps most importantly, it gives your employees a chance to bond with each other and get to know each other better.
Employ More Visual Forms of Communication
Mastering written language is always beneficial, but most people prefer visual forms of communication.
Visual forms of communication are faster, easier to understand, and for the most part, more intuitive. Seeing data visually represented in a graph is much smoother than having someone rattle off a bunch of numbers to you.
You can improve internal communications in your workplace by employing more visual forms of communication. Photos, illustrations, diagrams, and even simple things like facial expressions and body language can help communicate your points.
Look for Coaching and Teaching Opportunities
Not all of your employees will be strong communicators by default. That’s perfectly okay.
Anyone can become a better communicator if they have the right coaching and practice. When you notice a team member falling behind, or struggling with a specific aspect of communication, pull them aside and treat this as a coaching or teaching opportunity. What, specifically, is this person doing wrong? What steps can they take to make it better?
Recognize Individual Strengths and Weaknesses
It’s also important to recognize that good communication isn’t an objective universal standard. Different people communicate in different ways, and that’s perfectly acceptable.
Someone who has mastered the written word might struggle in an active conversation, while a fluent, eloquent conversationalist might not be skilled at typing a coherent email.
Part of your job as a communication leader is to recognize these individual strengths and weaknesses, and cater to them. Put people in positions that allow them to use their unique communication skills as effectively as possible — and try to help those people learn how to compensate for their weaknesses.
Don’t Overwhelm Your Employees
It’s important to avoid overworking or overloading your employees.
There are many strategies and tools in this guide that you can use to help your employees become better communicators. However, if you bombard them with new communication requirements and overload them with training, it’s probably not going to stick.
Better internal communication is something that develops over time, so it’s a good idea to take baby steps and a more iterative, forgiving approach.
At all levels, consider collecting feedback from your employees and team leaders.
In what areas are they satisfied with internal communications? What types of internal communications are the frequent target of complaints? In this way, you can get a better feel for the internal communications “pulse” of your organization — and you can become much more targeted in your communication improvement strategy.
With these strategies, and plenty of patience, you should be in a position to see steady improvements in the clarity and efficiency of your internal team communications. Once you have a solid foundation, better internal communication will likely self-perpetuate. Good communication fundamentals will become baked into your company culture. This makes it much easier to remain consistent and onboard new team members.
That doesn’t mean you can stop paying attention to internal communications — but you can afford to take a moment to celebrate the win.
Featured Image Credit: Felicity Tai; Pexels. Thank you!
How to Help Women in Business Get Past Gender Barriers to Management
According to a recent Women in the Workplace study from Lean In and McKinsey, the most significant barrier women face in business these days isn’t the glass ceiling. Instead, it’s the floor—the barrier to entry-level management positions.
Although women now own 4 out of every 10 businesses in the U.S. and are making great strides at the top of the career ladder, they’re still missing from entry-level and middle management positions. That’s something companies of all sizes need to address.
Women in business means greater success
It’s not just about diversity (although that’s a worthy goal in itself). Statistics suggest that hiring women for positions of leadership helps your company succeed. For example, one study from Peakon revealed that when a company’s management includes 50% or more women, its employees feel more loyal to the company and its products or services.
A 2017 Morgan Stanley report echoes these findings, suggesting that gender diversity in a company translates to enhanced productivity, more significant innovation in product and service design, improved decision-making, and decreased employee turnover, with an associated higher level of worker satisfaction.
Try implementing these three strategies to fix that broken rung at the bottom of the career ladder and get more women into entry-level management roles.
1. Start from the ground up.
Your job is to make your workplace more attractive to diverse candidates. Start with neutralizing your job notices and ads. Go over every ad line by line before you release or publicize an open position. Avoid potentially off-putting terms like “rock star” and “ninja.” Some of the more qualified female candidates might interpret those as code for “male candidates preferred.”
Also, consider following the example set by Buffer. Based on the understanding that women are far less likely than men to apply for a job if they don’t precisely match the image created by the ad, Buffer encourages all candidates to apply, even if they feel they don’t meet every single qualification.
If you want to reach more women candidates, consider going where they are. For example, open up your job search by sharing the job notice on platforms and websites with audiences with a significant female component.
2. Commit to taking action
Set actionable goals for both hiring and promoting women into first-level management. Clear establishment of metrics and a commitment to meeting those metrics can help foster positive change for your company as you seek to diversify its management.
For example, if there are two candidates, one male, and one female, the female candidate has a 50% chance of winning the job. However, if there are three female candidates and one male candidate, the possibility that one of those women will win the job goes up to 67%.
However, if you reverse that scenario, with three men and one woman, her chance of winning the job plummets. One way to combat this kind of unconscious bias is to set a concrete goal of advancing an equal number of men and women to the final round of evaluation. Creating this type of rule helps you see beyond mere lip service to the ideals of “promoting the qualified candidates” to truly evaluate your candidates based on their qualifications without unconscious bias.
Finally, seek to establish clear, neutral evaluation criteria. Ensure your hiring and promotion evaluation criteria are based on the actual duties required in the position, not on some outdated assessment that hasn’t been standardized and edited for gender neutrality.
3. Get to the root of unconscious bias.
Training evaluators and supervisors to spot and combat unconscious bias can help root out the obstacles to promoting women to leadership positions in your company. But how do you identify a bias when it’s not consciously held?
One way is to test your systems. For example, the next time your company is hiring for a potential leadership or feeder position and a female candidate is weeded out at a pre-interview stage, consider advancing her to the next round regardless. If she proves herself qualified at the interview based on the feedback you get, you might have some bias at work in your processes.
Additionally, implement committed-based evaluation processes. Groups with balanced representation can help root out and neutralize individual biases. At the same time, they can help provide a more robust assessment of each candidate’s strengths and challenges.
Published First on Due. Read Here.
Featured Image Credit: Photo by RODNAE Productions; Pexels; Thank you!
Simplifying AI Can Optimize Your Entire Business
Artificial intelligence is becoming less of a futuristic technology and a more integral aspect of today’s business landscape.
The usage of AI across the business universe is revolutionizing every industry, and Gartner reports that at least 75% of organizations use deep neural networks today.
In financial departments, AI is automating menial tasks and reducing errors in traditional manual workflows.
AI’s unfounded fears
There’s no doubt that businesses utilizing the right AI for the right reasons are seeing exponential benefits. Unfortunately, not every business unit is as excited about the available AI solutions that finance departments are gifted with. Change management is a significant component of failure when implementing any transformative technology.
Many humans still have unfounded fears about it gaining sentience or replacing them, and workers are wary of becoming obsolete once their daily tasks are automated.
But that’s never been the point of AI, machine learning, and automation because they augment human intelligence.
Humans are still very necessary
Take OpenAI’s GPT-3 and Dall-E 2 text- and image-generating models for example. Although they can generate a 1,000-word blog post with images within seconds, there could be a lot of legal liability issues if you were to publish raw content generated by one of these models directly on your website.
The content is never 100% accurate; human interaction is still essential to train, implement, and use AI across the business.
Simplifying AI for the average worker
AI data sets and outputs need to remain accessible, and making them accessible means tapping into everyone throughout the organization to apply their professional judgment to the data sets. This provides the machine’s velocity, variety, and veracity as it learns.
AI in financial departments
AI’s use in financial departments is so successful because payroll, compliance, accounting, taxes, etc., is complicated — especially when you’re a multinational corporation or utilizing the remote global workforce unlocked by the pandemic.
Expansive data sets
But you can import expansive data sets into AI to make it more useful. Streamlining all of this and optimizing processes not only reduces errors, but it frees up human workers to perform more advanced analytics that are closer to the reason they got into the industry in the first place.
How simplifying AI can open up usage possibilities
Simplifying AI for the average worker means they can focus on less menial, more innovative tasks and accomplish much more in less time.
GPT-3 and Dall-E 2 may not have flawless, production-ready outputs, but they utilize neural networks on large datasets of about 175 billion parameters across 45TB of text data. As a result, they’re perfect for ideation and conceptual work to get a firm visual image of the final product to work from.
Pass it around
Although their outputs seem wildly different (text versus images), both of OpenAI’s creations work similarly. While it seems like AI leads to faster advancements, what really happens is we discover one important concept that opens the door to new possibilities.
This is why getting the technology in as many hands as possible is important to see how others find use in the outputs it creates.
How AI brings more value to a business
As the quality of content-generating AI debate rages in the media and online forums, the technology’s uses for internal business functions are even more remarkable.
New ways of looking at things — skilled data scientists
AI across the business continues to open new ways of looking at things and allows skilled data scientists to develop complex models to predict anything you need to know — from machine health to possible market conditions and forecasting.
AI across the business can and will go beyond personal assistants, voice-to-text, and personalized recommendations to bring value to the roles of individual employees.
Better use of time
Leveraging specific AI technologies throughout the business keeps human workers at every level working only on tasks that cannot be automated. This includes processing exceptions to the rules (which there will always be), analyzing AI-generated outputs, and more.
Instead of spending our days manually putting together reports, we will be analyzing pre-generated reports and making advanced intelligent decisions.
Embracing artificial intelligence
When GPT-3 and Dall-E 2 were released, both writers and designers feared for their jobs. However, those fears were relieved as they tested the tools and got more comfortable with them. These tools can generate amazing work to assist writers and designers, but it still requires skill to understand how to prompt it for the desired results.
A professional can edit and polish it throughout the process in a variety of ways that will always require human instinct.
And an experienced photographer or graphic designer will get higher-quality outputs and know how to fix them in posts.
Focusing on higher priorities
Familiarizing yourself with these types of tools helps to better understand what they’re truly capable of and how they can be implemented into existing workflows while seeking better, faster, and more optimized ways to do things. That’s how finance departments leveraged AI to accomplish the most laborious and error-prone aspects of their jobs so they can focus on more important things.
And it won’t be long before AI transforms every aspect of every business.
Featured Image Credit: Sergey Zolkin; Unsplash; Provided by the Author; Thank you!
Build Your NFT Marketplace – Here’s a Top Guide for Crypto Newbies
NFTs pave and sculpt a new way of lifestyle by gaining acceptance all over the world. No boundaries or no restrictions that can stop you from your reaching your goals or targets. In the crypto race from pioneers, you can become maestros by developing the best NFT marketplace. Tailoring every process of the NFT marketplace, this blog will give you the complete picture with high clarity.
You have one easy pick, which is to grab the lucrative NFT marketplace development companies. Build your own NFT market with great hype and a plethora of audiences. You may become inquisitive about what I am talking about! You will surely be grateful to all the crypto enthusiasts if you say yes…because you are going to read such a realm of NFTs.
Ponder the highlights and get your foundation strong so that you can master the developmental aspect of the NFT marketplace. So, you are almost there to examine what is there here….
Non-fungible tokens — A buzzword to hear! Elimination of physical assets
“Are you nuts?” This was the question that we were facing once in the year 2014 when NFTs gave their entry. Just like science fiction or rocket science, NFTs are realistic and progressive tokens that are still present.
Rocking in every domain, like arts, memes, videos, music, games, and sports, there are successful NFT marketplaces. Inching every step in tokenizing the physical assets, there are still continuous advancements. Unleashing the features of NFTs, one can mesmerize and become a fan.
Basically, NFTs are the digital manifestation of any physical asset. The NFTs are the reformations with distinct technical codes that exhibit uniqueness and are non-identical in nature. These NFTs stand out from the crowd because they differ more from fungible tokens.
They are also interoperable and non-interchangeable in nature. As they seem independent, in reality, they are not. The NFTs rely purely on blockchains and smart contracts.
NFT marketplace – Giving hype for NFTs is a comic until they are showcased in the marketplace!!!
Driven by the complete performance of blockchain and smart contracts, the NFT marketplace is a skyrocketing business. Escaping from the hell of merchandising using barter systems, it is now possible for an efficient trade of NFT collectibles. Unlike fungible tokens, NFTs trading will not occur publicly except with a preferable marketplace.
NFT platform is a virtual exhibition of NFT collectibles on an online platform. These platforms facilitate the trading and bidding of NFTs. Creating amusement in the minds of users will bring out lucrative and exponential profits to your home.
Blockchain comprises several blocks and nodes that store the transactional details. There are prominent blockchains that give their hand to you. These are Ethereum, Binance smart chain, Flow, Polygon, and Solana. Blockchains are the financial ledgers that store the database of the NFTs. It remains forever once it registers any information.
Smart contracts – These are software that comprises technical codes which direct the functions. It will allow the implementation of any function if there is a mutual agreement between the sellers and buyers. They exhibit automation that is everything in its control. Hence, no need to worry about the performance of the marketplace.
Highlighting why the NFT marketplace is a demand And will it be in the next generation?
Scalable NFT marketplaces are, of course, in demand in the crypto universe. There is an NFT marketplace that still illuminates the crypto space. Below you can find the listings:
- Axie Infinity
Every cryptopreneur will make sure they know what they are doing and why they want to do it….NFT marketplaces are the iconic platforms that produce the highest turnover of all the digital collectibles. Tokenizing into NFTs brings the treasure-house into our home.
Axie Infinity, a blockchain gaming platform, is generating a turnover of up to $3.2 billion every year. The gaming industry benefits from the invincible platforms and the unstoppable flow of income it flourishes. It involves the purchases of Axies, which are NFTs that allow the participants to get into the game.
CryptoKitties, on the other hand, is another gaming platform. It involves the buying, nurturing, and selling of kitties. The turnover crosses around $1.3 billion every quarter of the year. There are other gaming platforms that are still competitive with other newbies.
Not limiting itself, the NFT marketplace of gaming in 2032 will produce about $327.7 billion, according to estimation.
Love arts, videos, sports, or music? Even the NFT marketplace also makes their proliferation deeply. There are NFTs that rush up with the best feature and interoperability that can openly challenge any competitor.
Oddities of NFT marketplaces – How their functionalities differ through features
There is something which is non-negotiable and that decides the success rate of your platform. Storefront is a dashboard that enables you to trade and expose your NFTs to your users. It also displays the options like NFT rankings and favorites.
The listings will allow the sellers to list out their NFTs if they intend to mint their wishful physical assets. The listings will also give the option to upload the documents along with the details, tag, and description of NFTs.
The bidding software will enable the process of auction listing of NFTs. Thus it facilitates another means of selling NFTs. There are two types of bidding: English auction and Dutch auction.
Search and filtering option
It is easy to tap the buttons to explore NFTs than to wander along the site. Hence, it helps in navigation by just swaying our fingers on the screen. It will thus reduce the time and effort of users.
The wallet will ensure the storage of funds also while selling and buying. The wallet may sometimes be inbuilt, or it is obtainable from external vendors.
You can create an NFT marketplace in a short span of time with recent trends and emerging technologies. There are stunning and top NFT marketplace development companies (appdupe dotcom) that will stimulate your enthusiasm, giving meaningful outcomes. With the NFT marketplace, I can assure you that you can fly with a high return on investment.