Monday, July 9, 2018

The Digital Communication Framework with Three Vertices

How to communicate just RIGHT is really critical to the business’s success and employees' engagement.

Communication is key to improve leadership effectiveness and modern management effectiveness. Great communicators are working to spread their messages throughout the organization in a diverse set of activities with mixed communication styles, and sometimes, they have to be fluent in multiple business dialects, with contextual intelligence; and keep communication flow with clarity and verification. Often, communication gaps caused by cognitive difference, ambiguous process or management bottleneck stifle changes and block creativity. At both strategic and operational level, how to apply the digital communication framework with three vertices to improve business communication transparency and effectiveness?




Listen: It is important to foster a transparent and trustful business environment where feedback and communication are based on reality and not simply what senior management wants to hear. It is important to LISTEN to what the other party wants to say. If you do not listen, you will never get the two sides of the story. Encouraging people to speak, actively listen to what they say, engage in candid "give and take" communication. Everyone has been heard and understood and feels heard and understood. Everyone has a voice and every voice carries weight. The "HEAR" model for active listening includes the following steps:

-Hear: What is happening so that you can adapt. Peers, subordinates, co-workers, clients, and vendors all have their various observations, opinions, and valuable feedback.

-Encourage: People are comfortable to express themselves, question the status quo and practice creative communication for problem-solving.

-Analyze: There needs to be a better appreciation to examine a situation and understand the problem from different angles, analyze, synthesize and take rational logic to improve communication effectiveness.

-Respond: Creates a healthy cycle of continuous feedback, exploration, experience and a more natural process of improvement.

Tell: Listening and telling are not necessarily sequential steps, but an iterative communication continuum. Digital transformation is a journey, digital leaders should convey a clear vision and well-defined objectives. Telling the variety of business audience about the varying opportunities and possibilities, the upward challenges and downwards risks. The strategic communication initiated by top digital leaders are not the top-down one-way street, it should embrace creativity, context, cascade, tailor the varying business audience, in order to close cognitive gaps and achieve digital synchronization. Digital leaders need to learn how to tell an inspiring story which is vivid enough to reimagine what is possible and persuasive enough to motivate change throughout the comprehensive planning and step-wise actions. There is the time to say and there is a way to say. If you can express things in the right way at the right time to the right audience with the right level of abstract or detail, you are on the right path to improve communication effectiveness.



Adapt: Digital means flow and overwhelming growth of information. Organizational adaptation is the ability to be highly responsive to the fast-changing business environment. The great communicators are the high-quality leaders or professionals who can communicate objectively with strong logic, clarity, and understanding. By taking the step of listening and telling, businesses should be on the right track to adapt promptly. Digital adaptation is faster if made with the full involvement of people in organizational change by leveraging an effective communication framework, efficient communication platforms, channels, tools, and feedback mechanism. From the economic and organizational point of view, people are able to adapt themselves and their organization through a collaborative and peer to peer approach. The goal for improving communication transparency is to make hierarchical systems adaptive so that they can respond to the challenges of a more complex, interconnected, and interdependent world.

How to communicate just RIGHT is really critical to the business’s success and employees' engagement. It’s all about striking the right balance to communicate effectively and achieve the end goals. To have this happen reliably requires a bidirectional and reciprocal cycle of listening and telling, develops the culture of continuous improvement so that innovation gets inspired, and makes a proactive business continuum for getting digital ready.

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