I’m often asked what messages leaders should be communicating to their teams.
The purpose of leadership communication is to inform, inspire, engage, and unite your team. With this in mind, I believe the most important messages to communicate are those that serve to:
- Connect your team with the big picture
- Instil a sense of confidence
- Foster a culture of collaboration
Connect your team with the big picture.
If you refer to any employee engagement survey you’ll find a question in there that relates to ‘the big picture’:
- “I am clear on the company’s goals and future direction”
- “The mission or purpose of my company makes me feel my job is important”
- “My supervisor keeps us informed about our organisation’s plans”
In their 2018 report on employee engagement, Aon Hewitt report that today’s employees are looking for more exposure to senior leadership and strategy, so they can feel a part of the organisation’s roadmap. They want to know where the business is heading and how they can strengthen their skills and knowledge to contribute to both their own and their company’s success.
How to create a clear line of sight
As their leader, you need to be communicating messages that help your team members understand – and connect with – the big picture:
- Start with why your team exists – what’s the mission, your purpose, your reason for being?
- Next, the vision for the team – a future-based statement that describes where are you heading and what you aspire to achieve
- Then it’s about your strategy and your plan – how you intend to achieve your vision
- Your measures of success – how you’ll ensure you stay on track; the milestones, KPIs and metrics you have in place to chart your progress
- But most importantly it’s how individuals can contribute; what is expected of them; how does their role directly contribute to the success of the team
By ensuring a clear line of sight that connects the day-to-day work of employees with the big picture, you’ll create shared understanding and shared ownership of success and that is one of the key drivers behind any highly engaged, high-performing team.