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Building A Proactive Communication Plan

Working to develop a proactive communication plan is becoming more and more critical as teams become more distributed.

Blogs: https://agile-mercurial.com/ and https://twentyfirstcenturyworkforce.com/

The Distributed Workforce is Exposing Flaws in Business Communication: https://agile-mercurial.com/2019/05/15/the-distributed-workforce-is-exposing-flaws-in-business-communication/

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Building A Proactive Communication Plan

  1. 1. BUILDING A PROACTIVE COMMUNICATION PLAN Avoiding Lazy Communication Practices
  2. 2. PROACTIVE COMMUNICATION PLANNING With the rise of distributed teams, the lazy communication methods of the past are not working
  3. 3. LAZY COMMUNICATION RELIANCE •An accidental overhearing of relevant information (https://agile-mercurial.com/2019/01/26/what-is- osmotic-communication/) Osmotic Communication •Accidental moments of collaboration “Watercooler Moments”
  4. 4. LAZY COMMUNICATION EFFECTS • Lack of Standardized Reporting • Departments deciding on the format of information they receive with no input from other departments receiving the same information or the department producing the information • Increases the time it takes to communicate • Over-reliance on “Formal” Communication Methods • Don’t tell me in person, put it on your report • Can cause delays in communication • Reporting of Useless Information • Communicating because you think someone needs to know something • Often results in too many meetings with little relevance to those involved • Failure to communicate • But I thought someone else told you
  5. 5. Distributed teams are increasing The remote workforce is growing You can no longer afford to roll the dice with your communication methods
  6. 6. EVALUATE YOUR NEEDS What Do You Hope to Gain?
  7. 7. FIGURE OUT WHAT YOU NEED • Is your team highly distributed? • Does your team include people from multiple countries and/or cultures? • What tools do you have? Do you need new/better tools? • What problems are you currently having with communication? Where has poor communication failed your teams? • Who needs to communicate? Who should communicate? Who is involved in over- communication (meetings or communication with almost no benefit)?
  8. 8. DEVELOP GUIDELINES •Don’t overdevelop guidelines – this will cause communication and morale to suffer •Keep things as general as you can •Some areas may need more attention than others • For example: ensure that sexual harassment is defined and not tolerated
  9. 9. LEVELS OF COMMUNICATION Collaborative Communication Planning
  10. 10. ORGANIZATIONAL LEVELS OF COMMUNICATION INTERPERSONAL TEAM MULTI-TEAM COMMUNICATION MULTIDEPARTMENT AND ORGANIZATIONAL
  11. 11. INTERPERSONAL COMMUNICATION • The core of the “Watercooler Moment” • Communication between individuals that may or may not be work related • Organizations need to actively work at avoiding the discouragement of this type of communication • Develop opportunities to carryout interpersonal communication for those that wish to engage
  12. 12. TEAM COMMUNICATION • Communication that is intended for the whole team or a majority of the team • This communication may include communication that is not work-related, but it tends to be less personal • Team communication plans should be decided on a team level by the team
  13. 13. MULTI-TEAM COMMUNICATION • Multiple teams communicating together within the same department • This communication tends to be only business focused • The communication plan should be developed through a collaborative effort involving the whole department using representatives from the various teams
  14. 14. MULTIDEPARTMENT AND ORGANIZATIONAL COMMUNICATION • Communication between multiple departments or communication that is organization-wide • This communication plan should be facilitated by the highest levels of leaders or management, but include representatives from the individual departments • The plan may be more general in nature, mostly standardizing communication practices • Example: Defining the layout of an accounting report that impacts multiple departments or defining when people should be notified about important events
  15. 15. REEVALUATE YOUR PLAN At Regular Intervals, Verify the Plan is Still Relevant and Being Followed
  16. 16. USING DMAIC TO IMPROVE Define Measure Analyze Improve Control
  17. 17. EXISTING PROBLEMS Verify problems were solvedVerify Ensure plans are being adhered toEnsure Look for new problemsLook Accept criticism of the current plan and adapt as necessaryAccept
  18. 18. BUILDING A PROACTIVE COMMUNICATION PLAN Joshua Render https://agile-mercurial.com/ https://twentyfirstcenturyworkforce.com/ https://agile-mercurial.com/2019/05/15/the-distributed-workforce- is-exposing-flaws-in-business-communication/

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