Many companies seeking to improve their performance and scale up their business all share one common challenge: They are inundated with the amount of emails, SMS and various types of electronic written communications they receive. These various forms of written communication were implemented to assist coworkers in moving forward and making their best decisions quickly and efficiently. However, over time companies have found these alternate forms of communication are actually creating an increased number of misunderstandings and company political drama. Furthermore, there is a great increase in wasting time sifting through emails, especially those received unnecessarily.
The big question, then, is how do you keep or improve performance with the current conditions of business communications in the digital age?
While it is not easy, it is definitely achievable.
Adopting the following three innovative ways of implementing this ”uncluttering” process will almost guarantee more efficiency and less time wasting in an organization:
Get back to the basics: Don’t send an email to ask a simple question when the intended receiver is sitting in the next cubicle. Pick up the phone or get up and walk over to the person, even if you have to say, “Very quickly, I need to know…” In other words, don’t be afraid of a little human interaction, and don’t mistakenly think sending emails is always the most efficient way to communicate.
No email Fridays: Not only does this encourage employees to meet or have a phone conversation, it forces people to think twice about whether the communication is necessary at all.
No more than four: If more than four people need to be copied on an email, schedule a meeting instead. Again, it encourages everyone to think twice about the necessity of the communication. Meetings are one of the most powerful tools that companies can use, as long as they are productive and efficient. They provide a platform for everyone to stick closely to the agenda, come prepared to the meeting, and develop the understanding that there will be a solution or decision at the conclusion of the meeting. Rather than relying on multiple recipients to respond at their convenience or create never-ending threads, there is a set time in which a decision will be made.