Communication ConfusionDoes your team/organization need more communication? Would you like to get more e-mails?

Most workshop participants give an emphatic yes in response to the first question and a deafening no to the second. Yet when told that team/organization members want more communication many leaders respond with ccing more people or sending more e-mails.

During the CEO forum mentioned in my last post (“Seven Deadly Time Traps for Leaders“) we discussed the growing challenge of dealing with overwhelming volumes of e-mails and electronic messages. And how younger generations use electronic devices as their main communication tool.

The next day I was honored with a Communication and Leadership Award from Toastmasters International president, Jim Kokocki, at a ceremony in Toronto. Later Jim and I discussed the changes and challenges of developing communication and leadership skills in today’s online world.

Like management processes and people leadership, it’s all about balance. Information Technology is critical today. And so is the human connection of verbal communications:

Information Technology/E-Tools

Powerful Verbal Communications

Speaks to the head Engages the heart
Quick and efficient Establishes mutual interests
Impersonal and tone-deaf Builds emotional/personal connections
Convinces with facts and analysis Inspires with stories and examples
Easy to send negative/angry messages Addressing tough issues with courageous conversations
Broadcast to large groups Strengthens teamwork and engagement
Provides background and updates Builds involvement and ownership

We need both IT/E-Tools and verbal communication. It’s a matter of reaching for the approach that matches our objectives and the situation.

Further Reading: