Top-tier communication is key to any successful leadership project. It keeps team members informed, allows them to discuss any issues they have without fear of retribution, and improves overall productivity. Being a successful leader requires communicating effectively, but it also means learning about examples of poor leadership communication. Below are several examples to help enhance your leadership education.
Example #1: Never Responding to Emails or Faxes in a Timely Manner
While it’s not always possible to reply to emails or fax messages right away, chronic late responses, or no responses, are problematic. They make employees, fellow managers, suppliers, affiliates, clients, and anyone else you communicate with regularly feel like their messages are not important enough for timely responses, which can breed resentment and irritation. And since most people have their work emails on their phones, failing to respond relatively quickly can seem like an insult to the sender. To avoid these problems, make a habit of responding when you receive the email or fax, assuming there is not a more pressing matter at hand.
If you cannot provide a full response immediately, simply acknowledge the email or fax and let the sender know you will provide a detailed reply as soon as you can. They will appreciate your acknowledgement and are less likely to feel resentful or irritated.
Example #2: Providing Employees With Unbelievably-Vague Instructions
Without clear assignment and project instructions, team members are left feeling confused and unsure about where to begin. This can result in lackluster or incorrect work that needs redoing, which wastes company time and frustrates those involved. No matter how you send project and assignment instructions, such as via email or print, provide as much detail as possible. It also helps to include a message like, “If you have questions about this assignment/project at any time, email me at [x address] and I will get back to you as quickly as possible.
Example #3: Never Being Open to Employee Feedback or Concerns
A perpetually-closed office door is another example of poor leadership communication, because it makes you seem closed off as well. Employees might feel nervous or even scared to approach you with feedback, questions, concerns, or issues with fellow team members. As a result, processes at the office or other workplace can become stagnant or not move forward as efficiently as they should, which impacts productivity and raises questions about your leadership abilities.
While you do not have to keep your office door open throughout every work day, you can let your team know that you are always there to discuss work-related issues. Consider dedicating a certain amount of time each day to workplace discussions employees want to have, or sending an email denoting specific times of the month for feedback. Knowing they can talk to you helps employees feel respected and heard.
Example #4: Providing Incomplete Responses to Questions
When team members ask questions, it is your duty to provide detailed answers to the best of your knowledge. If you are unsure about what to reply for any reason, be honest and let the team member know you will provide an answer as quickly as possible. Detailed answers avoid mistakes that can end up in project delays and redos, and even brand reputation damage, depending on the issue. By taking time to think about each question and offer a detailed response, you are demonstrating your dedication to your job and everyone who works below you. Employees will appreciate your efforts as well, since it makes their jobs easier and less stressful.
For more examples of poor leadership communication and what to do about them, visit Peaceful Leaders Academy today!