Clarity and Transparency in Communication

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Communicating with clarity and transparency is your greatest asset as a manager. Most industries are cluttered with jargon and the business world is fond of what a former colleague of mine once referred to as “business puffery” so when challenged to explain something it is easy to fall back on the buzzwords and talking points. Don’t do it,  it is a mistake.

Instead focus on using plain language and specific examples to explain things clearly and concisely. Do not evade, if you can’t provide an answer, or do not have an answer, then simply say so. Always remember that you are dealing with people not statistics and show that you respect their intelligence.

By all means, focus on the positive aspects of the message that you need to convey, but if you attempt to tell someone that the sun is shining when the rain is clearly pouring down you are not only insulting their intelligence, you are telling them you do not respect them. Transparency builds trust and respect, two of the rarest and most valuable commodities in management which cannot be bought and are hard to regain once lost. Both qualities are reciprocal, if you do not show trust and respect, you will never earn it.

In a market with high employment and rising salaries retaining your existing team has never been more important. Your employees will almost inevitably find a better offer once they start looking. Establishing a relationship of trust and respect with your team will not only benefit you as it enables them to in turn communicate back in a respectful but honest fashion, it will reduce turnover and save your company from costly knowledge loss.


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