So much rides on good communication and yet we’ve all seen what happens when it goes bad. Miscommunication, assumptions, lost opportunities, stained relationships, waste and more. Today, we begin to lay the groundwork for topics we’ll cover in future episodes.
If there’s a phrase that has captured the last year of life her in our world, it’s probably this: “you’re on mute”.
If you’re one of the handful of people who hasn’t been on a zoom, teams or other video call this last year I guess you missed out on this treat.
But for the rest of this, I’d say I’ve only heard this phrase uttered… every… single… meeting.
After a while, you just laugh because, for as advanced as we are as people and with all of this technology, we still (myself included… often) haven’t figured out how to unmute ourselves when we’re ready to talk in a virtual meeting.
At this point, it’s just become commonplace… and honestly quite funny. Most meetings, I’m making silent bets with myself on who will forget to unmute and how far we’ll make it into the meeting before someone does this.
But it just brings to the surface how important communication is. I’m not a great lip reader so I have a hard time figuring out what someone is saying when they’re muted… especially if their video is off too.
But in our daily lives, the same thing plays out over and over. Lack of communication. Or sometimes miscommunication.
And when that happens, in our home lives or especially in business, it can take a huge toll.
You’ve seen it happen over and over and I’m sure you’ve got some great examples that just rose up into your brain of when miscommunication cost you money in your business, or caused a rift in a team relationship or created a frustrated customer or disgruntled employee. I could go on. Products scrapped. Deadlines missed. Leadership questioned. Embarrassment. Wasted time. Pain. Brokenness.
It’s so crazy because it’s just words, right? It wasn’t like you meant to ship that product to your customer but you decided to toss it off the side of that bridge instead. Nope. You just sent that email and they read it differently than you did in your head.
Communication can be, at the same time, the simplest thing we use and deal with, and yet one of the most complex and potentially destructive when used the wrong way.
There’s so much to unpack in this area and I can’t wait to dig into all of it in the episodes ahead.
Communication affects both your people and processes in huge ways.
As a leader, you set the direction for this. When done well, good communication makes processes clear, helps team members know where they stand and feel valued, sets a plan of action for the company and a unified focus, eliminates so… much… waste.
Communication is just words. But those words are like rudders on a thousand tiny ships. And when those ships go off course, they collide, sink, cause destruction.
As we talk about the different ways communication affects your company, I want to give you little snapshots that can help you identify the areas that need adpdressed, give you hope and vision for communication done well, and bring to light pitfalls as well.
So, as we dig deeper into communication next time…
Sorry, I was on mute. My bad.