2021 has definitely been unique in terms of business communications (thanks, Covid). However, adapting to the pandemic and new ways of working has been a good learning opportunity as well.
Business Communication Strategy Lessons Learned from 2021
Keep reading to find out some of the key lessons we learned this year regarding business communication strategies.
Digital Communications are here to stay
Even as companies have reopened offices and gone back to doing some of their business in person, it’s clear that remote work is a trend that’s here to stay. And, along with that comes the need to communicate digitally, via video meetings, team chat apps, and other online communications platforms.
Companies have realized that digital communications are more efficient and productive than traditional workplace communication methods, so they’ll continue to employ new business communication strategies learned during the pandemic.
Feedback is important
Another key lesson learned from the pandemic is that business communications should be a two-way street. It’s important for companies to ask their employees how they’re doing and what they need to perform their job well and be more productive, instead of just communicating instructions to them.
Executives and supervisors should take the time to really listen to their employees if they want to optimize business efficiency and productivity. They can do this by encouraging employees to provide them with feedback directly or creating channels for anonymous feedback.
Business Leaders Should Be Empathetic
With more people working from home and dealing with pandemic-related stress and problems, it’s crucial for business leaders to remember to be empathetic. Employees may be dealing with all kinds of other issues outside of work and at home, so companies should understand this and be empathetic when communicating with their remote employees.
Business leaders can also show empathy by not requiring any of their employees to return to in-person work until they feel totally comfortable doing so. Even with high vaccination rates and lower Coronavirus numbers, many people may not feel safe returning to the office until the pandemic is over.
Companies Need a Crisis Communications Plan
Coronavirus took the whole world by surprise, and companies were pretty much forced to improvise completely new ways of doing business and communicating with their employees on the spot. Many businesses were unprepared for adapting to such a crisis, and it hurt their success.
To avoid this in the future, companies should develop a crisis communications plan that outlines how they will communicate with employees, partners, and clients in unexpected events. This will make it much easier for businesses to adapt quickly and keep running smoothly in a crisis.
Don’t Forget to Reassure Clients
In a crisis like the pandemic, clients need to know that they can rely on you and your organization. As part of your business communication strategy, craft messages to clients that let them know you’re still there for them and are doing everything you can to continue delivering great results.
When you make the effort to reassure clients and keep them in the loop about business changes during a crisis, they’re more likely to stick it out with you and buy more products or services from your business in the future.
Team Communication Apps are Key for Improving Collaboration
With the majority of business communications happening online, collaboration strategies for teams have shifted too. Since face-to-face meetings and discussions aren’t taking place, teams need to use team communication apps to collaborate effectively.
Using a reliable workplace chat platform allows employees to collaborate in real-time and keep track of tasks and projects. It also helps hold everyone accountable for their work, so things still get delivered on time, even with so many people working from home instead of in an office.
Businesses Should Consolidate Communications into One Platform
We already mentioned the importance of using team communication apps for collaboration, but if you’re using too many different tools, it can get messy and actually detract from productivity. That’s why companies should find one really strong business communication app that works for them and centralize all communications into a single platform.
The best team chat apps have all kinds of extra built-in features that can be powerful productivity tools. For example, search and filtering features make it easy to find any piece of information in old chats. Also, things like built-in collaborative notes, to-do lists, and file sharing are all great features for consolidating communications and improving workflows.
Our Final Thoughts
The Coronavirus pandemic has changed the way many businesses operate. Though some of us may eventually return to the office, many people will regularly continue to work from home. In fact, some studies have predicted that more than 20% of the workforce will be working online by 2025.
Because of this, it’s important for companies to look at some of the lessons learned during 2021 and use them to develop and implement new business communication strategies for 2022 and beyond.
Businesses can greatly improve productivity and collaboration by digitizing and consolidating communications into team communication platforms, no matter where their employees are working from.