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The Leading Edge

How do you communicate, recognize and celebrate innovation with your team and peers? Communication creates an innovative culture when you let your employees know you value their ideas and input. And you don't shoot the messenger of bad tidings when innovation has failed. Great managers communicate support and advice, reflect and probe in a constructive way when things go less than perfectly. More importantly, they don't play the blame game.

An Innovative Culture Can Renew Your Team

In today's workplace, Twitter, Blackberries, instant messaging, and text messaging are dominating how we and our teams communicate. Regardless of the means, it is the essential skills that managers use when communicating with their team members that will create and drive an innovative, forward moving culture. After all, the foundation for effective communication is openness.

When a manager encourages on open exchange of communication, people are not afraid to offer up new ideas or disagree with an old one that could be improved. When this is done consistently by all your managers, it signals a change in your organization that brings it to life and brings innovation to the table. Innovation leads to better ways to serve the customer and eventually comes back to your bottom line in increased productivity and revenue.

Communicating Innovatively is NOT a One Size Fits All

With a diverse workplace already in full force, managers must understand that their communication can't be a one size fits all proposition. Managers have to be concerned with understanding individual team members' interests and tailoring their messages accordingly.

Great companies have managers who communicate openly and often, ask for feedback, listen, and then respond appropriately. Take Grand Circle Corp., a Boston travel company, which is one of HR Magazine's 50 Best Small & Medium Places to Work. Grand Circle defines what they celebrate as "open and courageous communication" as being willing to ask tough questions, give constructive feedback to others, and accept such feedback without defensiveness. It's one of the organization's values.

High Performance Innovation Meets Empowered Employees

What happens when you have both innovative communication technology and managers trained to communicate more effectively? Employees begin to look forward to coming to work because they have a relationship that includes open communication with their manager.

Both communication technology and managers who communicate well will streamline work, accelerate transactions, release creativity and empower employees. "High Performance Innovation" is one of the top ten forecasts of what every business needs to prepare for now according to the Institute for Global Futures 2007 Global Trends Report.

Communicating clear expectations, following up on these expectations, and delivering a consistent, honest message to your employees will allow them to understand the current state of the company and how they contribute to the success of the company.

Clear Communication

How do you stack up on these 3 key communication points?

Creating a climate of open communication
Designing clear, concise messages
Listening -- before automatically responding

We can coach your managers and supervisors to learn, practice, and apply the latest techniques for developing effective communication skills; thus improving their performance and increasing the productivity of others.

To find out how well you're communicating, contact us today to receive a F*R*E*E online communication assessment. You'll receive a secure link to an online response form that takes 15 minutes to complete and shortly after that, a complimentary report. In it, you'll discover tips and suggestions for improving your communication skills as well as strategies  for connecting with the most challenging members on your team or at work. 

Call or email right now -- larry@360compass.com   or 503-282-7181

"To effectively communicate, we must realize that we are all different in the way we perceive the world and use this understanding as a guide to our communication with others."

~ Tony Robbins,  Master Motivator & International Keynote Speaker

All the Best to your success,

Larry Ferguson

Senior Consultant/President

Sources:

1. Vital Learning Corporation (2007). Essential Skills of Communicating.
2. Pomeroy, A. (July 2006). Great Communication. HR Magazine.
3. Canton, J. (Jan. 2006). The 2007 Global Trends Report, Institute for Global Futures.

The Leading Edge is provided by Vital Learning Company and Compass Consulting Group for managers and supervisors who seek new ideas for leadership and career growth.

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Copyright 2009   Compass Consulting Group    www.360compass.com