Effective Communication – How to Enhance Communication with Your Team
Enhance communication among your team and fitness organization with these tips.
In order to create a great team, you need great leadership and great leadership requires great communication. By creating a space where communication flows, not just top down but in all directions, you will have a more engaged team leading to higher productivity, results and revenue.
“Great leaders communicate and great communicators lead.” – Simon Sinek
During this return to normal, we have to acknowledge things have changed, and this includes the way in which we communicate. Here are several ways to enhance communication among your team and organization.
Take some time to evaluate your communication strategies and the different channels in which communication can happen: in-person, virtual or video messaging. Not all employees will be on-site and/or available at the same time, so consider doing some recorded video messaging for employees to watch on their own time. Around 50% of employees surveyed* say they would prefer to watch a video message from a CEO versus join a live meeting or read an email.
Do not be afraid to get creative, consider a visual presentation with minimal words to show what you want to say instead of having a talking only meeting. It is also important to determine what communication channels (email, video, chat, text, etc.) are best for the message you intend to send. Consider creating some new training tools for your employees on different platforms for communication to avoid any confusion or frustration among employees.
In order for communication to be effective, it has to be consistent with the team and each individual. Regular 1-1 meetings with your direct reports and team meetings should be a priority within your organization. During these regularly scheduled meetings, work on developing a relationship of trust with your team as it allows them to know they have your support regardless of where they are working.
While some meetings should be formal, remember your company culture and try to instill that culture both in-person and online. For example, if you were going to have an informal meeting over coffee for those who are in-person, you should schedule something similar with your remote employees too. Employees want to be heard and having scheduled meetings guarantees the time for this to occur.
Ask for Feedback
To enhance communication, the conversation should be flowing in both directions — while you are delivering a message, you should also be taking the time to listen and ask for feedback. A top down approach does not work if you truly want an engaged team that feels connected to the organization and feels their role serves a purpose.
If you have established open lines of communication with your teams, they should feel comfortable and inclined to provide honest feedback on how to improve processes, training, sales, etc. However, not all employees are comfortable providing feedback during group settings and/or 1-1, so make sure you also provide an opportunity to collect feedback where the results are anonymous.
Involve the Team
In order for communication to be clear and consistent at all levels, you have to involve your team in some of the decision-making processes as well. Your team and their down level reports are the ones directly involved in the day-to-day operations of the clubs, interacting with your members, so you want to make sure they are on board with your strategies and goals.
Employees engage more whenever they believe their actions have a purpose. If you are communicating effectively with your team, accepting feedback and involving them in decision-making, you are likely to have a more focused and engaged team. This leads to increased performance, greater member satisfaction scores and higher profits. While communication is never perfect, communicating well is a critical skill that can develop over time with practice.