Whether you’re dealing with your personal or professional life, learning how to communicate effectively is one of the best ways to ensure healthy relationships and a stress-free environment. Communication is something very personal that is learned from our environments. Oftentimes, people do not realize they even have communication issues, until they’re in a setting that puts their skills to the test. Unfortunately, one of the most common ways people discover their communication issues is when they begin having troubles in the workplace. Poor communication can lead to interpersonal issues as well as cause you stress. Thankfully, learning effective communication can help to reduce stress.
What is Poor Communication?
Before we delve into how effective communication can reduce stress in the workplace, let’s first define poor communication. We can define poor communication as any type of communication that prevents you from effectively working with others, whether it’s due to poor quality of communication or a lack of communication. This prevents all parties from reaching a mutual understanding, which adversely affects one’s ability to effectively collaborate with their peers.
How Poor Communication Causes Stress in the Workplace
Now that we have defined poor communication, let’s take a closer look at how it can cause stress in the workplace. Some of the most common ways are as follows:
One of the top ways poor communication causes stress in the workplace is by lowering morale. If your employees communicate poorly, they are much more likely to be dissatisfied with their work teams, as well as their jobs overall. This often results in workers failing to collaborate or contribute, leaving other team members frustrated. This can cause unnecessary tension in the workplace.
High Turnover Rates
Poor workplace communication can also result in high turnover rates. As mentioned, poor communication can cause low morale, which ultimately causes workers to seek more positive environments to earn money and share their unique skill sets. Therefore, you may develop a work environment in which there seems to be a revolving door of employees.
Moreover, in recent years, we have learned how stress can adversely affect both mental and physical health. Unfortunately, toxic work environments are a top cause of prolonged stress. Over time, prolonged stress can cause your employees to feel mentally and physically exhausted. It can cause them to experience anxiety, depression, and many other symptoms. Additionally, prolonged stress can also trigger various physical illnesses as well. These symptoms can include aches and pains, dizziness, headaches, high blood pressure, digestive issues, muscle tension, jaw clenching, sexual issues, and much more.
Poor Customer Service
One major side effect of poor communication is poor customer service. This is one of the most serious issues to overcome as a company. When a company has poor customer service, they struggle to maintain customers, which adversely affects the ability to sustain a profit. Moreover, disgruntled customers are more likely to leave negative reviews. These days, reviews can make or break any business. Companies offering poor customer service can quickly damage their reputation if they fail to address the issues.
Causes of Poor Communication in the Workplace
As mentioned, communication is highly personal and occurs for a wide variety of reasons. However, in the workplace, some of the top causes of poor communication are:
As with all aspects of the workplace, the environment is created by those in charge. So, if management does not emphasize the importance of communication and go above and beyond to train their employees to effectively communicate, poor communication will likely be the result.
In keeping with that notion, if employees are not receiving the proper feedback on their performance, this can also lead to poor communication. In other words, it is up to supervisors and managers to help coach employees beyond their individual and collective communication issues. So, if no one is providing this feedback, it becomes next to impossible to improve the communication issues.
One of the best ways to facilitate good communication in the workplace, is to create clear objectives. Doing so forces your workforce to focus their time and energy on completing tasks that get them closer to their organizational goals. However, when the objectives are unclear, it can be difficult to know what needs to be done, which then puts a strain on communication overall.