For businesses, communication is key. To reach your organizational goals effectively, it's important that everyone involved can communicate with one another. The internet, and especially the rise of mobile, has made communication more instant and more effective than ever before. Today, web and smartphone apps can supercharge your company’s internal communications, helping streamline your efforts to improve efficiency, productivity, and ultimately, your bottom line.
Versatile Options for Communication
Instead of relying on a company intranet, organizations can take advantage of a variety of programs designed for business communication. There are apps available for instant messaging, email-style message threads, and even sending out notifications via SMS text message or phone call. By leveraging more than one available app, businesses can streamline and enhance internal communications for better team cohesion and improved productivity.
Business Apps for Internal Communication
These nine business communication apps, available on mobile devices and desktop computers, provide a reliable and versatile way for employees to communicate effectively with one another:
Slack has quickly become one of the most popular project management and collaboration tools, especially for companies with remote workers. This cloud-based team communication app actually originated as an internal communication tool for a small game development company. Launched in 2013, it's now one of the most popular ways for internal teams to collaborate. Slack features chat rooms organized by topic, private groups, and direct messaging. Files, groups, and members are all completely searchable, making it easy to pull up previous conversations. It's available for web, iOS, Android, and Windows Phone. [slack.com]
HipChat is another popular team communication app, accessible from web or mobile anywhere in the world. It's available in a freemium version, but there's also an inexpensive paid version that adds extra features. Designed to integrate with Google Drive, Facebook, Dropbox, and other popular software, it's a versatile and affordable option that's a great choice for small businesses. [hipchat.com]
Basecamp bridges the gap between staff and clients. It's designed to make it easy for people in different departments within a company to share files and collaborate on projects. By consolidating internal communications, project management, and client relations in one place, it provides an efficient and streamlined solution for managing a variety of internal communication and collaboration needs. Basecamp's discussion boards eliminate the need for complex, hard-to-navigate email chains by consolidating discussion about a subject in one place. It also manages tasks and to-do lists for staff members. [basecamp.com][click to continue...]
It could be argued that communication is the basis of just about everything in our modern world - and this is especially true in the small business world. Strong lines of communication are absolutely essential to ensuring the success of a small business.
This includes both internal communication among team members, and external communication to customers, clients, and others. Great communication leads to a healthy company, strong growth, and success - while poor communication can often have the opposite effect.
In this article, we'll take a look at 5 reasons why your business should make great communication its number one priority. Read on - and change your business for the better.
1. Builds Better Relationships
Communication is the basis of relationship-building. Relationships are built and maintained by consistent, positive interactions with others. Effective communication skills and a friendly corporate atmosphere are both essential for this step.
Employees can be encouraged to enhance their communication skills through mandatory training sessions, and your HR department should also emphasize the importance of communication skills throughout the on-boarding process. Doing so allows all of your employees to be on the same page about communication - and provides a healthy environment in which relationships can be built.
Small businesses should also encourage communication from a top-down, corporate level. If you are running a business, you should make it clear that you are focusing on openness, honesty, and communication at a corporate level, and that you expect your employees to interact with you openly, just as they would interact with each other.
Doing so will help you build a strong corporate atmosphere of communication, and a relationship-based company that is tightly knit, loyal, and totally dedicated to their jobs.
2. Facilitates Innovation
How many great ideas have been lost because an employee wasn't able to talk about them? If your employees feel uncomfortable challenging your ideas - or presenting ideas of their own - your company will suffer, and innovation will stagnate.
Open, comfortable communication of new, innovative ideas is crucial for further business growth. A corporate atmosphere that encourages innovation and the sharing of ideas will enjoy massive benefits when it comes to innovation.
Every idea that an employee has for your business should be heard, whether it's a good idea or not. If employees feel free to share their innovative ideas - no matter how radical - free of judgment, you'll be shocked at how many interesting and useful ideas you can take advantage of to help grow your business.[click to continue...]
Learning how to organize and execute an effective meeting is a skill that is often overlooked by executives and managers. The end result being a large group of employees who walk away from the meeting without taking in any of the important points. A company meeting should be more than just an exchange of information, it should be used as an opportunity to inspire and motivate your employees to perform at a higher level.
Whether a general staff meeting, problem solving meeting or company goal meeting there is a basic outline a leader should be following to make it as much of a success as possible:
Who Is Invited?
Just like a party, you want to make sure that the right group or groups of employees are asked to participate.[click to continue...]
Just a heads that it is important as a business to follow all the FCC and your state laws regarding sending automated phone calls or texts. You need to make sure your customers have opted in to receive any kind of message from you, and never send any kind of unsolicited message. For texting you can have your customers opt-in to a list via text message, for example text COMPANY NAME to 80123 (our short code), which will opt them in to receive alerts from you. For phone calls you need expressed written consent from them agreeing to receive your messages.
In order to survive in the small business world owners have to be quick on their feet to think outside of the box. Competition is fierce and in order to retain your customer base you have to be able to offer them something that nobody else, or at least not as well. One example of this is developing an over the top customer service experience that is friendly and informative, yet non-invasive and an excellent way to do that is with a voice broadcasting service.
Every imaginable type of small business should be communicating with their clients and customers. From service based industries like hair salons and HVAC companies to retailers both online and face to face, active communication will help keep you at the forefront of their minds. Look at a few ways different small businesses can use automated calling to retain strong ties with their consumers.[click to continue...]
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