Workplace Communication

In an era of Casual Fridays and work-from-home colleagues, how can you maintain effective office communication in a changing business climate?

We’ll steer you through changes in business etiquette, and help you successfully navigate through the new realities of workplace conflict and office politics.

Advice on how to handle these sticky situations at work...

Rather than assign good-bad or right-wrong labels to what you hear, confirm your understanding in neutral language.
You’ve just learned that you won a big account, earned a promotion or received approval from the top brass to implement your idea. Before you spread the word, hold off a day or so.
If you’re confused by an employee’s behavior, don’t let that stop you from speaking clearly.
If you come right out and insist that your boss or employees trust you, you won’t get results.
Build rapport with employees by showing that you’re not all business all the time.
You’re often privy to confidential information like impending layoffs or a corporate merger. As much as you’d like to tell your employees, you can’t. You must keep quiet until final decisions are made.
If you use e-mail to communicate with employees, set the right example: Only send messages on safe, noncontroversial matters.
You’re a hotshot. You get things done and rarely make mistakes. But even though you don’t screw up often, you’re human.
Q. A fellow manager and I are dueling for a VP spot that will open up soon. We were friends. Now we’re so intent on showing each other up that relations are getting testy. I’m worried things will only get worse, but I want that promotion. Ideas?