How To Create Effective Communication Between Departments (And Why It Matters).
Maybe I’m dating myself, but did you ever play that game ‘broken telephone’ when you were a kid? Essentially it starts where one person whispers a sentence into another’s ear. That person whispers it to someone else and so on until the secret sentence reaches the last person who says it aloud.
Usually the original message has become distorted and sometimes completely different by the time the last person hears it.
Does this describe your business?
Do you know what organizational silos are? It’s not the big things that farmers use for storage.
In a nut shell, it describes when a business or organization compartmentalizes their departments/teams. To read more in depth about silos, please click here.
When departments are compartmentalized there is a communication breakdown throughout the organization (the broken telephone game). When there is a communication breakdown, business suffers.
How This Relates To Customer Service
You might be wondering how this relates to customer service; it doesn’t. Not directly anyways.
Depending on the type of business you have is whether silos directly or indirectly affect customer service.
To me it seems obvious; if departments are not effectively communicating with each other then something important may get missed in relation to a client (this affects both B2B and B2C companies).
If you miss something for a client or if it takes your company a long time to satisfy their need/s, you may lose that client and any future business they may have given or referred you to.
How To Break Silos Down
Depending on the severity of your organization’s disconnect, this can be a timely process. Humans wont always make it easier for you too, as many people are resistant to change.
Start at the top, work closely with department heads, team leads and managers. Brainstorm to decide the best way to implement change and the most effective means of keeping communication between departments open.
Once you have reached a decision begin implementing the changes (go slow if you feel that some departments will resist change).
No one is losing their job or position over these changes, you are effecting a change in the company culture.
Do not expect over night success! Humans need time to adapt and change. Once you have made the switch to a more open communication type of environment, you will find that business flows more smoothly, new ideas and innovations will begin to blossom and your employees will feel like they are a part of a community and not just a job.