The Communication Skills Drought –
My sisters are scrambling this year as they deal with a challenging drought at the family ranch. Checking weather apps on their cell phones has become as much a part of their daily routines as checking on the cattle and horses. Many organizations are also dealing with a severe drought–a drought of job candidates with effective communication skills. Recruiters and HR leaders have noticed a steady decline in these skills for years and the forecast does not appear to be improving among incoming graduates and new hires; most say it is getting worse and it’s costing businesses to the tune of billions.
Counting the Losses –
Effective communication is like a good rain on grass; it creates life and growth! Just as grass withers without rain, so does an organization without effective communicators. Studies show that employee engagement levels are closely tied to the communication skills and capabilities of your people. Sadly, Gallup says only 13% of employees are actively engaged. This low engagement rate is costing USA companies between $450 and $550 billion per year in lost productivity!
Drought-Proofing Your Organization –
How can leaders stop these losses? Most leaders proclaim that people are their organizations’ greatest assets; if this is true they should take immediate steps to improve communication skills – starting with their own! A Harvard study confirms that 70% of people are more engaged when senior leaders communicate with them. Another study by Gallup shows that 70% of a team’s engagement level can be traced to their direct manager’s ability (or inability) to communicate. Experts agree that effective managers should be communicating and motivating your people toward key goals. Yet, a Harris Poll reveals that 69% of managers admit they are uncomfortable communicating with employees! You may have heard the saying, “People don’t leave organizations – they leave bad managers.”
The Rainmakers’ Dilemma –
Recruiters and HR leaders are supposed to be your organization’s rainmakers; they are entrusted with bringing in the right people to drive your organization’s success. But, just as my sisters are now scrambling to find hay for the winter, so are recruiters and HR leads as they search for candidates with stronger communication skills. Of course, this is great news for those who have strong communication skills, and it spells opportunity for those who proactively invest in improving their communication skills.
Poor Vs. Good Communicators –
What are some of the key differences between poor and good communicators? Our team created the following list from our years of working with leaders and teams to improve their communication skills. This list is not necessarily in order of importance, although we do concur that listening skills are king! Listening skills unlock many other doors in the workplace.
Poor Vs. Good Communicators – How To Spot Them!
Poor Vs. Good Communicators – More Ways To Spot Them!
Ending The Drought
It is clear that investing in effective communication skills pays off – for job candidates and organizations. You can use the above lists of Poor Versus Good Communicators to help you increase your self-awareness and begin working to improve your communication skills today!
HELLO & THANKS!
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Our team provides award-winning soft skills strategies to help leaders & Fortune 500 groups achieve their business goals. We provide consulting, coaching and training services in: leadership development, communication / soft skills, reputation management, stakeholder engagement and storytelling / presentations. Benchmark has consulted with and trained leaders and associates from all 50 USA states and more than 25 countries.