Sometimes it's almost easier to understand a monkey who uses sign language than people who use a shorthand form of the English language in conversation, emails and texting. While that kind of communication is suitable between friends, it doesn't have a formal place at work. The lack of appropriate communication skills in the workplace can drastically affect a company's productivity and its bottom line, which makes employing people with the right communication skills at the top of most employers' qualifications list for new employees.
The American Management Association's 2010 Critical Skills Survey lists effective communication as one of top four skills companies need to be competitive in a global economy. Appropriate communication skills allow employees to share information at all levels of a company. Basic reading and writing abilities used to be the norm for employee skills; the 2010 survey takes that further by citing the need for employees to have "the ability to synthesize and transmit your ideas both in written and oral formats." Since communication is a two-way street, appropriate communication includes the other person understanding what you are sharing with him.
Oral and Written Communication Skills
People don't work in a vacuum. They work and interact with co-workers, supervisors and sometimes customers or vendors. Managers need to hire people who understand the difference between formal and informal oral and written communication and the right time to use either at work. Employees with a lack of this understanding may convey wrong ideas or tick people off. When an employee uses slang or colloquialisms to communicate thoughts and ideas, co-workers might miss the intended meaning. With workers from diverse backgrounds and cultures, this kind of communication presumes that everyone understands what is being said when they might not.
Employees with the right communication skills help build trust among team members, which results in the team being more energetic and dynamic. The right communication skills involve integrity, honesty and the respect for opposing viewpoints. Employees with the ability to listen to their teammates' ideas without judgment help to foster collaboration, which increases the team's motivation to achieve productive results. Employees with these skills respect the right of others to share ideas or thoughts. Team members who are free to brainstorm and share ideas internally, without fear of rejection, come up with solutions that are profitable for the entire company.
Profitability and Success
The employee who interacts with a company's customers directly influences the company's profitability and success. Customers need to feel as if their problems are important and that their needs are understood. Employees with good communication skills exhibit courtesy when dealing with customers. They know how to listen and to ask customers the right questions for clarification. By helping solve customers' problems, employees with good communication skills help your company retain its customer base. Managers who understand the importance of good communication skills among employees will only hire candidates that demonstrate these abilities, which ultimately helps the company to be successful.
As a native Californian, artist, journalist and published author, Laurie Brenner began writing professionally in 1975. She has written for newspapers, magazines, online publications and sites. Brenner graduated from San Diego's Coleman College.