What is the Appropriate Cadence For Member Communication?

Communication is critical for any organization. Most companies these days have become aware of this matter and have taken appropriate steps to ensure that employee communication happens among them. Unfortunately, despite the efforts of many, the bridge between the importance of communication and how it affects an organization is still at times overlooked.

In certain cases, such as when miscommunication happens, the contact that communication has on employees may not be recognized until it’s too late. Decreased employee morale, sick calls, and reduction in productivity among employees can happen due to miscommunications. The topic of communication has become vital that textbooks have been written about them and courses in communication are offered to management programs and conferences.

How does communication affect leadership? Leaders are the ones who are helping guide the organization towards its proper destination. In this spirit, the capability to communicate is important. Leaders who can effectively communicate with employees are likely to find themselves able to connect with their employees. The ability to connect will lead to increased teamwork, highly motivated staff, and increased job satisfaction. Ineffective communication can lead to the opposite effect.

Every employee values a leader with great communication skills. Efficient communication provides employees with the opportunity to gain accurate information about the organization. This can extend from the status of a project to the state of the business in a changing marketplace. When provided with the appropriate information, employees will be able to process it and decide how to respond. The response of the employee will influence the business operation, including successes and missed opportunities. Without any clear communications, it can be quite unclear to staff what is expected. This results in a less-than-satisfactory operation.

Depending on the organization, communications can happen in a variety of ways. The following provides some important information regarding communications. It can be quite significant and make the difference between successful and unsuccessful communication.

A communication cadence is the flow or rhythm of communication between people, in this case between a leader and their team or individuals on the team. While this rhythm may not be similar to each team member, but one does need to exist. Similar to a band that can’t remain together without a drummer making and maintaining a rhythm, without a clear plan and cadence, communication with your fellow team members will be less clear and less effective overall.

Determining the correct cadence can be done in several ways. Not every song you hear has the same tempo and not every person requires the same type of communication with you. Consider the competence and confidence of each team member along with their personal communication needs. Think about the nature of their work, and both their needs and your own.

Take the time to think this through for yourself and discuss it with them too. Ask them how often they would like to take the time to talk and ask them what they require from you to be successful. While you want to consider their input, don’t ignore their needs either. Come to an understanding and develop a plan for your communication cadence.

Formal & informal communication

Content and audience

Who in charge of delivering the message?

How communication takes place

Reach out

Clear communications

Consistent communications

Staff affect

Interdependence

For many product development teams, each person must collaborate alongside several others to bring the product to market. Is the designer late? Problems in QA? The client has introduced new requirements?

Any changes were done to the timeline or expectations spread through, affecting everyone else. This is one reason why daily meets have become popular with teams like this. It gives them the chance to update each other and coordinate properly. The problem that plagues a business in one location may not impact on a different location. It’s useful for these employees to meet semi-regularly to compare notes, share insights, and work to change those few then that have impacted them all.

When correctly integrated into a management routine, the fundamental role of a cadence is the drive collaboration amongst team members. The by-product of this effort reveals itself through four primary benefits.

Get your business cadence established early as possible, so that it’s embedded into your company’s culture. Remember that having a great project will develop an overall collaboration culture.

Keep the bigger picture in mind. With regularly scheduled one-on-one your communication and success will vastly improve. But it’s also necessary to think bigger and longer-term with people as well. Discussion of the goals and career planning and other interesting topics is essential and doesn’t need to happen as frequently as one-on-one. Schedule time for a long-range and bigger picture topic beyond regular work communication.

For the most part, quarterly will be a great frequency here, but make sure you don’t go farther than once per year. In many cases the team member won’t request for this conversation, assuming you will be the ones to call them up. Them not asking doesn’t mean they don’t want or need these conversations. As the leader, you are setting the cadence and make sure these important conversations are a part of it.

Originally published at https://www.joinit.org.

Marketing Manager at JoinIt.org. Big fan of snacks. Like, in general.