You know communication is important in the workplace. From discussing last month’s earnings to giving department-wide presentations, there’s no end to the amount of communication that occurs in the office.
What you may not know, however, are the three main types of communication — verbal, visual, and written. You also may struggle with which tools and method will help with each one and why use it. Here are a few reasons why every different type of communication is important in the workplace, starting with the least interactive and moving to the most:
Instant message (IM) and text
It’s fast. It’s easy. It’s informal. But it’s not always the best way to get updates or information. Sensitive topics that could cause issues shouldn’t be covered here.
No matter what new technology has been introduced, email has withstood the test of time – at least so far. This form of communication is necessary for client or customer interactions, along with semi-formally addressing coworkers or employees about certain information. It’s a little more formal than IM or a text.
As it only hits on written communication, it lands at the bottom of the interactive communication spectrum. Despite its limitations, emails are likely to be necessary and useful for years to come.
Just picking up the phone to talk to a coworker or client can be far more effective than emails, yet still only hits on one category of communication: verbal. Phone calls are great for information conversations or short meetings, yet do have various shortcomings. Regardless, this straightforward, quick form of communication will also be an integral part of the workplace for at least the near future.
Although you can discuss with people, visually, webinars tend to be one-way communication vehicles. You’re relaying information and you want people to understand. They can have interactive components — like polls — but they’re not generally thought to be two-way sharing.
Video chats and webcasts
This tool is especially useful for remote workers or clients located far away. Video chats cover verbal, visual and written with chat functions and more. They’re interactive. Not only are you able to see the individuals you are speaking to, you can see how well they’re responding to your topic or opinion, ensuring a better and more authentic flow of communication.
All in all, face-to-face continues to be one of the best forms of communication. While the possibilities are limitless for face-to-face meetings, the problem is that many remote workers, including those who telecommute for the day, or distant clients simply can’t meet with you one-on-one everyday. This is why innovative video collaboration services can connect your office – no matter where you are.