Strategy

30th January 2014

No One Told Me That by Ian Kinnery

“I didn’t know that” or “No one told me that” are common enough phrases but they are also danger signs if heard frequently in your business. Why? Because they are signs that your communication strategies and processes aren’t working.

You do have communication strategies and processes don’t you?

It is often said that the majority of problems in businesses are communication problems at their root and you will be able to recall, in your own experience, some of the many challenges that have been brought about by incomplete or failed communication, missed delivery times, wrong products shipped, incorrect prices applied, priorities misunderstood. You know the list. It goes on and on.

So if communication is so important would it not make sense to look closely at your communication processes?

I would argue that in a business environment that is changing at the speed of light the need to communicate, quickly, effectively and expansively is more critical today than it has ever been.

So what are your communication processes?

What is your communication strategy?

I know that many of you will naturally look to technology to address this problem, and certainly some of the solution may be technology based, but the fact is that we have created a world where we are better connected then ever before but where effective communication is arguably rarer than ever before. E mail and texts are definitely not the answer.

For 150,000 years mankind has evolved by using the spoken word. The written word has probably only existed for the last 3000 years or so, so as humans we are naturally more responsive to face to face verbal communication than any other form. How frequent and effective is face to face communication in your business?

Based on the research of Verne Harnish in his book, “The Rockefeller Habits” one of the most effective habits is for all members of the company to be involved in a daily huddle. That doesn’t mean that they are all involved in the same huddle but that each day everyone experiences a focussed 7 to 12 minutes huddle in their working group.

Before you start to cry that you don’t have the time and you need less rather than more meetings, understand that John D Rockefeller met face to face with his co-directors every day. Steve Jobs met with John Ives pretty much every day. If you watched the fly on the wall documentary on the hotel Claridges last year you would have witnessed their daily huddle every morning. Can you imagine a football or rugby team taking to the pitch without some form of a huddle before the game, and at half time?

Can you imagine a military unit going into combat without some form of a huddle first?

High performing teams depend upon effective communication strategies and processes. Do you have a rhythm of effective daily huddles?

More on this next week.

The Daily Huddle is one example of a habit that can transform your business performance. I will explain many more in a free 90 minute seminar on the 10th of February. Click Here for details.