“I’ve been over-communicating with my team.”
During various organizations’ responses to the coronavirus, we’ve heard this statement from nearly every leader, manager, or supervisor with whom we work.
To push back: it’s not over-communicating. You’re now devoting the necessary time and thought to communicate as much as your team needs, perhaps for the first time.
For most leaders, the amount they are talking with their teams, and the thought going into these messages, is considerably more than any other time in their careers. “I’ve never had to spend so much time communicating, or thinking about my message, as I have during these times,” said a candidate in one of our programs just this week. “It’s exhausting,” she admitted.
She’s not wrong. It’s a lot. It takes strategic thinking and a whole lot of energy. Even more challenging, it’s a habit that many are just beginning to develop while guiding a team in the middle of multi-faceted crisis.
If it is feeling beyond normal to you, you’re right – it is. As we re-evaluate many aspects of our professional culture, what you consider to be baseline communication should be top of the priority list.
As you approach this analysis, I’d offer three questions to answer:
- What is my communication cadence, and is it keeping people informed enough to make decisions?
- Am I considering how people with different perspectives might receive this message?
- What can I do to evaluate whether the message I’m sending is being heard and understood?
We’re learning lessons every day. Make your communication skills one that carries on for the rest of your career.