8 Rules That Will Help You Communicate With Your Colleagues Effectively

Do you know how to speak with a team member in a productive way? Just use these 8 rules from Ian McAllister, the former chief executive of Amazon.

Do not cancel appointments

The best way to show that the person is not quite important for you is to cancel an appointment with him for any reason. If you can’t meet with him on the agreed time just ask him to postpone the meeting for another time and apologize for the inconveniences caused.

Let the conversation begin

Do not throw out the entire work plan on the employee. Let him begin to talk about the issues he wants to discuss with you. Assist him by asking a simple question: "How can I help?". Try to single out the necessary information and ask open-ended questions, so that he could share his problems. Ask him about specific cases ("How is the work on project X going?") or ask general questions ("What have you been working on lately?").

Be open and honest

When your team member talks about important problems you’ll be likely to face quite serious issues. If you can’t solve them, just warn him about it, but if you can then speak directly and honestly. When an employee tells you about a problem in the team's work, admit it and say how you will deal with it. Or if it comes to ware raise you don’t agree with as the colleague is not quite worthy, analyze his gaps and bring him down to earth.

Discuss career growth

Talking to your employees try sometimes to move away from the key topic and discuss their career growth, finding out whether they’re satisfied with their work. Try to understand if your colleague has any specific goals, and how he would like to improve his work in the future. If he plans to get promotion, recommend him how he can achieve this. Also ask what needs to be changed: "How can I improve my work as a manager?". Not everyone will give you an answer to it, but sometimes you can get valuable advice.

Indicate what and how to fix

Performance problems tend to increase gradually. Try to identify them as early as possible and carefully inform the employee about them. The longer such problems are seen, the more strictly you need to specify them.

Teach how to deliver a message

One of the most important skills that will benefit all employees is the ability to express their thoughts clearly. Train this skill in your employees in one-to-one conversations. Ask to briefly describe the issue under discussion. If the employee can’t explain the problem well, train until you understand it, and then get back to the conversation.

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InToSoft is a Dutch software company that covers the full range of services from software development to QA and BA as well as promote our own software products. Our key competences are .NET, PHP, Share Point, iOS/Android/Windows Phone/Xamarin Development.
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