Team Communication: Three top tips for effective feedback

March 15, 2012, by , Posted in Blog,Team Building, 6 Comments

If people are the lifeblood of any organisation, team communication is the heart that pumps the blood around the body. Without effective tools for facilitating quality communication, everything grinds to a halt and, ultimately, no organisation can exist for long after team communication has stopped working. It’s easy to think that the human race is born to communicate, with great techniques built-in to every single person. However, certain situations make our ability to convey messages particularly weak. One of these situations is giving feedback on ideas, productivity, or how somebody carries out their work. Here are my top three tips for feedback that leaves everybody feeling motivated.

Team communication in three simple steps

Team communication in three simple steps1. Choose your battles Sometime, the best form of team communication is saying nothing at all – and that doesn’t mean ignoring your team until they figure out for themselves what they have done wrong! Before embarking on feedback, think carefully about your desired results, and the impact of these results on your organisation. If the results are negligible, say nothing – this means that when you do choose to communicate some feedback, it will be taken seriously.

2. Don’t judge ‘You are terrible at your job’! That’s a judgement that I’ve made. Thankfully, I don’t know you personally, so it’s unlikely you’ve taken my judgement seriously. But you almost certainly had an emotional response to my judgement, even for a split second. When you are giving feedback to a team member, this emotional response has a tendency to steal attention away from the constructive, useful points that you are making.

3. Be Clear and Consistent It’s no good expecting one thing today and another thing tomorrow. Great leadership and quality team communication is built around clarity that lasts – whatever feedback you give to your team now, you should expect them to remember long into the future. Don’t confuse the situation by adding caveats and exceptions to your feedback. Tell your team what you would like them to do not only today, but also moving forward.

Team communication training and advice

These are just a few guidelines to follow when delivering feedback, designed to foster a working relationship where criticism is accepted and acted upon with haste. Use these tips as the foundation of your feedback, accompany them with more training, and watch as your team communication is transformed before your eyes. You can hear me talking more about my views on Team Communication on our Youtube channel

About Richard Tyler

Richard is an extraordinary Business Speaker, Motivational Speaker and Facilitator. Richard has successfully combined two areas of expertise: The art of performance and behavioural psychology. He originally trained at Guildford School of Acting in Musical Theatre and has performed in many lead roles, such as Raoul in Phantom of the Opera. Circle him on Google Plus!

6 Responses to “Team Communication: Three top tips for effective feedback”

  1. Daniel says:

    In all my experience as a team member of IT companies, I know full well the importance of communications. I have also experienced that in most company team scenarios, communication is the thing that is lacking the most. Even in IT companies where the programming is the primary focus, it is the lack of communication that too often leads to inefficiency. A company can burn through capital quickly in programming if the team is not cohesive.

    Reply
    • Great point Daniel. Getting communication ‘right’ is critical. Of course, ‘right’ will be very different for each person. I work with many IT teams that are putting in expensive systems. When the communication goes off track, it can be extremely costly.

      Reply
  2. Tony says:

    This was a very good article and you are right on all counts. The one about being consistent is a big deal with me because where I used to work the standards were different for everyone and depending on how the supervisor felt what you did yesterday may not be good enough for today or it may not be what they want today. Thank you for sharing this is was very good.

    Reply
  3. Nicole says:

    I think in today’s economy and job market people that are on teams at work don’t communicate because they think if they keep the knowledge that they have to themselves it will mean job security. When on the contrary they can lose their job for the very fact they don’t work with the team as a team player. Great article thank you.

    Reply
    • I agree with you Nicole. There is a ‘hide all’ attitude. People keep information and idea to themselves too often. As you say, at some point it bites them on the backside!

      Reply

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