For many employees, it can seem difficult to approach people in management positions with concerns. However, communication is vitally important in any workplace. If you want your company and yourself to truly thrive, you need to encourage employees to speak with you or someone else about their concerns or suggestions for the job. It’s also beneficial to create an openness in the office that makes it easier for employees to talk to you about more general topics, like how their job is going, their hobbies, or anything else. The better the communication within an office, the easier it is to prevent issues from occurring; you want to find any way possible to improve the business.
Have an open door policy
A great policy to keep in place is an open door policy. Having set office hours where employees can come talk to you and ask questions or talk about something at the company can help with office communication immensely. Many workers may feel that you’re inaccessible, so providing a time for them to simply get to know people in management encourages them to talk to you and other administration.
Share about yourself
The best way to encourage employees to talk to you is to share about yourself. Talk about your career and how you’ve gotten to where you are, challenges you’ve faced, and even a little personal information. The more you show yourself to be a regular person, the easier it’ll be for employees to speak with you.
Make sure criticism is constructive
If you’ve been trying your best efforts to encourage employees to talk to you, but feel like they are not, consider how you provide feedback and your own communication style. You may be giving criticism that isn’t constructive or delivering what you think is helpful advice in a way that alienates employees. Make sure you’re communicating in a positive and constructive way if you want your employees to do the same and talk to you.
Allow anonymous feedback
While your ultimate goal may be to have employees openly confide in you, a first step to take would be allowing anonymous feedback. Giving your employees a way to provide honest feedback is a great step to showing that you’re open to hearing their opinions and want to change the company for the better. As they begin to trust the process, they’ll be more willing to talk directly to you.
Finally, a major pitfall that many companies stumble into is not being transparent enough with their employees. Even when a business feels that they are giving employees enough information, too often employees do not feel the same way. Make sure to keep employees updated about changes and the reasons behind them. Also, allow for questions so there’s no confusion or miscommunication.