‘I know you believe you understand what you think I said but I’m not sure if you realise that what you heard is not what I meant’.
I wonder how many words have been written over the years on the importance of communication.
I heard a great one the other day where Steinbeck’s ‘The Grapes of Wrath’ had been translated as, ‘The Angry Raisins’.
I laughed out loud when I read it, and it’s made me chuckle every time I’ve remembered it, to the point that I’m sure some people must’ve thought I’d gone mad.
It’s not just the mistranslation; it’s the gravitas and drama of one, versus the image of those little wrinkly, frowny faces….tell me that’s not made you smile?!
When it comes to employing people, it’s important that we communicate clearly and honestly – telling them not only what we are employing them to do, but also how we want them to do it – the standard we expect.
How easy would it be to lose someone we’ve recruited as a personal assistant if they discover the role is mainly filing and making tea?
Your employees need to know where they stand, what they’re aiming for and the measures you’ll judge their performance by.
The sort of people who will hire for your team will want to know the purpose of what they are doing too, they’ll want a goal, they’ll want to achieve.
If you want your people to engage in your business – to feel passionate about your vision and their part in it – communicate with them, involve them, share your wins, and celebrate with them.
The investment you make in communication will reap rewards in the future.
Do one thing: Think about how you communicate with your people. Are you dictating to ‘staff’, or leading a ‘team’?
If you haven’t already, why not download The Busy Business Owner’s Guide to Removing the People Pain, to help you get this important area right.