Good communication skills are a critical component of productivity in business. It is why every job listing—even those in precision manufacturing--include good communication skills as necessary criteria.
However, manufacturing firms have encountered a recent decline in communication skills as a reality in candidates and the marketplace. Whether from the deluge of technology and its predilections for abbreviations and symbolism or less demanding outcomes in the educational system, communication skills are not what they were a decade ago.
Communication is a two-way process.
Communication skills can be defined as the ability to convey verbal, nonverbal and written information from a sender to a receiver effectively and efficiently. It is an active (not passive) skill which also involves actively listening (being present in the moment). It means eliminating “noise” or anything that interferes with the message being sent and can include feedback to the sender to ensure the message is accurately received.
Too, on a deeper level, communication can include perceived and implied messages via emotions. For example, the tone, speed or volume of the voice has a bearing on the message received. Hopefully, these underlying components will be more positive than negative.
Some benefits of good communication in business include:
- Upward and downward communication empowers employees
- Reduction of barriers and improvement in diversity
- Crossing of cultural boundaries
- Building of harmonious teams
- Lessening competition
- Fostering positive relationships with managers
- Boosting of employee morale
Part one of this trilogy touched on communication skills during an interview process and suggested options when potential existed, but communications skills were lacking. What is truly helpful is making a permanent change in the employee’s ability to communicate.
Aside from training sessions, it is possible to implement some fun while learning communication, team building, and diversity skills at the same time. For example, set up a bi-weekly Scrabble tournament. Have word search puzzles or crossword puzzles that pertain to your business.
One exercise that could be helpful is to have one employee partner with another. Take three minutes to interview each other, and then take turns sharing with the group what he/she learned about the other person. This activity can be done over and over so the group becomes both informed and more at ease.
There are many exercises that build communication skills and teams. Positive change will happen in context over time.
Technical has ideas that can help you address deficits such as communication skills. We have a talent pool that has been screened and tested so we can offer the best fit for your organization. Actively serving the precision manufacturing industry for more than two decades, we care about your hiring concerns. We’re ready to listen and to help. Contact us today