5 Amazing Team Communication Hacks

5 Amazing Team Communication Hacks

Team Communication Hacks

Team communication is one of the biggest contributors to overall team productivity when done right, or reversely, one of the most serious inhibitors when done wrong. In fact, a Mckinsey study found that workplace connectivity can increase overall employee productivity by up to 25%. This shows that whether your team will function as a productive unit largely depends on how well team members communicate between each other. This sounds like a relatively simple process, but in practice it can be tricky, often complicated by team structures, organizational culture, a lack of team alignment, and a lack of a clear system of communication.

Luckily there are good practices in each of the above categories that can put you on the right path to improved communication, and thus a better functioning and more productive team. While there’s no one ‘silver bullet’ when it comes to team communication, the right combination of different best practices can begin the process of improving team communication. In this regard, below you will find 5 hacks for better team communication. Try them out and adjust them to your individual needs, and you’ll certainly see benefits.

Focus on team culture

Communication styles and functionality largely stem from team culture. Teams that value employee contributions and encourage team members to freely speak their minds often find that communication naturally flows between team members without strict structures or procedures. In contrast, in teams with strict hierarchies and unspoken rules of not ‘speaking out of turn,’ communication can be dampened, if not outright halted. By focusing on the right team values, such as collaboration, continuous learning, and mutual respect, and truly living those values, you can build a culture of open communication.

Structure your team to meet your needs

While culture is an important underlying aspect to team communication and collaboration, if at times difficult to define and quantify, team structure can also go a long way to improving team communication. Whether you’re arranged in sub teams based on shared work streams, or temporary working groups for specific projects, ensuring that team members have the chance to continuously interact with colleagues with whom they share responsibilities can help catalyze communication and collaboration. This structure should also be present in your choice of team communication tool. Private team communication networks are a great option in this regard, allowing you to integrate your team structure into your IM network, thus further encouraging team communication and collaboration.

Get everyone onboard

Implementing any changes to team communication without taking the time to ensure that all team members are on board can easily become counterproductive. Unless all team members are aligned on the need for structural or cultural changes within the team, the likelihood of these changes leading to the desired result is greatly reduced. Ultimately, the goal is for these changes to be meaningful and embraced by all team members, and this can only happen when team members have a shared understanding of 1) the need for these changes, and 2) the desired result these changes are aiming for. By taking the time to align on these points you will go a long way to guaranteeing your ultimate outcome.

Create the appropriate communications structure

Who shares with whom, and in what frequency, is a crucial question for any team looking to improve their communication. While there’s no one size fits all approach to communication structures, and even within a team structures need to be revisited, your team should at the very least aim for clear owners of every meeting event (team meetings, one on ones, etc.). These owners’ have the responsibility to make a case as to the frequency and focus of the event. This owner should also solicit periodic feedback from team members as to the structure and efficacy of the events. This more fluid approach will allow your team to continuously improve your communications structures.

Feedback, feedback, feedback

Your best source of information as to how your team communication approach is going, and what needs to be improved, lies directly within your team. No one approach will work forever, as the modern workplace is dynamic with new team members and projects, technological developments, and changing market trends. By continuously seeking out feedback from your team members as to the efficacy of team communications, you can ensure that you are well positioned to adapt to these changes. This is also a great way to demonstrate the value of open communication within your team!

In conclusion

Improving your team communication is one of the best ways to increase team productivity and overall satisfaction. This goal starts with developing a team culture of openness, respect and shared understanding of the importance of collaboration, and is solidified with team structures and communication tools. While there’s no one approach to this issue, and some of these hacks will work better for certain teams, this holistic view will go a long way to creating a team that values the importance of open communication, and thus reaps the numerous benefits that it leads to.

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The Basics Of Hygge, To Help You Get Your Groove On

We are VERY overdue for a cozy intervention!

Hygge What is it?

A term you’ve probably seen plastered over countless Pinterest boards and featured in this New Yorker article, “hygge, (pronounced hoo-guh) is a Danish term used to explain the feeling of contentment, well-being, and coziness. Though it has no true English translation, it’s gained massive popularity over the past few years.

Winter is the most hygge time of the year. This concept is all about the warm and fuzzy side of life: cozy slippers, roaring fireplaces, and soft blankets. But it’s so much more than that. It can be found in a cup of tea, while sitting with loved ones, or inside the crackling of a candle wick.

Adding warmth to your life is simpler than you think. I wrote this hygge-inspired article for an introduction to sprucing up your bedroom. If you want to make any space a bit cozier and content, add fuzzy pillows, soft rugs, softly dimmed string lights, and a couple of close friends (or your pet!).

Most importantly, hygge focuses on the present. Today, we’re drowning under a siege of notifications and it seems that our surrounding technology is inescapable. “But what about my followers?” Uhh, do you remember your real friends? As much as our lives do center around technology, we’re doing nothing but good when we take a break from technology. Put down the phone, power down your laptop, and enter the present. Curl up with a good book by the fire. Go to dinner with your family. Have a tech-free game night. Little things throughout the day can make you feel more connected without feeling like you NEED your phone.

This warm and fuzzy concept isn’t new, but platforms like Pinterest and Facebook have made it more accessible to the masses.

With so many holistic concepts like natural medicine and clean eating entering the mainstream, it’s no wonder that this Danish concept has gained so much popularity. It’s almost as is society is reverting back to a simpler time, which in my opinion, can do nothing but good.

Hygge helps us stay present, centered, and focused so that we can advance and better ourselves without forgetting the things that really matter. It’s so much more than blankets and lights.

Cover Image Credit: Pexels

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28 Things To Write About When You Don't Know What To Write About

Because writers block happens

So it's probably no surprise to anyone that sometimes a writer has no thoughts on what to write about. This week was one of those weeks for me. So this is what I came up with for this weeks article a nice list of things that can be written about when people aren't sure what to write about.

1. Your family

2. Your significant other

3. Why you love your major

4. Why you love your minor

5. Your best friend

6. Your ex-best friend

7. Your fur baby

8. A letter to the one that got away

9. A class that you love

10. A letter to the teacher/professor that changed your life.

11. Tattoo's

12. Your job

13. What you want your future to look like

14. Life lessons that your mom taught you

15. Your hate for the modern dating scene

16. Thoughts that you have going into a new semester

17. Thoughts you have as you're about to move into your first apartment

18. Student clubs

19. Why it's important to have an organized planner

20. Reasons to eat better

21. Thoughts that you have after getting a Fitbit

22. Pet peeves

23. Why you think your letter to Hogwarts is still coming

24. Your hate for men that aren't truthful from the start on what they want

25. Why it's important to have really good friends in your life.

26. Netflix shows worth binge-watching

27. Books worth reading

28. Thoughts on things happening in the world


Hopefully next time you or I have a hard time coming up with something to write about this list will help us even if we don't use something on this list maybe it will spark something else that you can write about.


Cover Image Credit: Pexels

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