Importance of Communication in Business
Disclaimer: Jason Parks, president of The Media Captain, is the author of this article. Some resources within the article link to themediacaptain.com for more information.
Communication is such a critical component of owning a business and being a strong leader. When you have strong communication both internally and externally, it leads to better efficiency, clarity and results.
After recently celebrating the 10-year anniversary of our agency, The Media Captain, it allowed for me to reflect on the keys to success over the past decade. I would rank communication as the number one reason we’ve been able to grow like we have.
Communication is often overlooked, though. One study reveals 89 percent of people believe that effective communication is extremely important, yet eight out of 10 people rate their own business’ communication as either average or poor [source].
The purpose of this article is to highlight the keys to success for business communication.
- Internal Communication
- External Communication
- Strong Product Knowledge
According to Forbes, 50 percent of employees feel they are being held back due to lack of transparency [source].
Strong internal communication builds a trust among a team. If an associate asks a question, it should get answered by management in a timely manner without a fluff response. If a key decision is being made, the team should be looped in.
Are there certain issues that are confidential and can’t be revealed immediately to an entire staff? Absolutely. A team with strong communication knows how to navigate the waters to decipher what can and cannot be shared while still maintaining a level of trust among the team.
When there is strong internal communication, associates have clarity as to what needs to be accomplished to improve themselves while also providing a better experience for the customer.
Our agency deals with hundreds of different businesses across many verticals. From small- and medium-sized to enterprise clients, there’s constant communication taking place.
We’re dealing with business owners, the spouses of business owners, CEOs, marketing managers and C-Suite executives. Some of the people we’re dealing with are extremely well versed in digital marketing while others we have to teach and guide more closely.
The key to success in dealing with all of these business professionals is product knowledge — and communication is a major ingredient in this.
Regardless of how good you are at communicating, if you don’t know your product or service inside and out, there is going to be friction. When you have product knowledge, you are able to answer questions more quickly, provide more depth and offer more clarity.
A study shows 58 percent of consumers are willing to spend more with companies that provide excellent customer service [source]. Imagine walking into Best Buy and dealing with the nicest guy or gal in the world. There’s a small issue, though. The associate doesn’t know anything about TVs, which is what you are inquiring about. This would leave you feeling frustrated.
Product knowledge is critical. Journalist Malcolm Gladwell famously stated it takes 10,000 hours to become an expert in something [source]. The bottom line is you have to invest in having quality associates and rewarding them for their hard work to ensure your communication is great.
There’s the famous saying that “the customer is always right.” As a business owner, I can tell you, this isn’t always the case.
If you feel the customer isn’t right and you communicate to them in a clear and concise manner while listening to their side of the story, there is a much greater chance the issue can be resolved.
The same sort of communication holds true internally among your staff. If someone is frustrated, there’s likely a reason.
If you are a good listener and have empathy, it will lead to stronger overall communication. And you cannot be an effective leader without it.
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