Did I Say That?
I read several articles and blog posts today about the marketing firm employee who Tweeted on behalf of Chrysler. I won’t rehash the entire story (you can read it here).
He meant to send a Tweet through his personal account and accidentally sent it through the Chrysler account. His Tweet read: “I find it ironic that Detroit is known as the #motorcity and yet no one here knows how to (expletive) drive.” A horrible mistake that cost him his job and his employer the Chrysler business.
@pwilson wrote a great blog post today talking about the power of our words. Whether you are Tweeting, talking, writing or any other form of communication your words hold power. They have the power to harm or to help.
– Reality check –
How are you using your words when communicating with…
- Your staff?
- Your clients?
- You vendors?
- Your family?
Something to think about…
P.S. As a marketing professional who manages several social media accounts this affects me on many levels. I will save that post for another day.
Now is a great time to reflect on all that we accomplished or missed the mark on in our business over the last year. It is important for all businesses to take inventory. This is more than just counting the number of widgets we have left – it should include taking an inventory of how well we served our clients/customers and how well we served our employees.
As a small business owner how well did you serve your employees? Did you empower them to do their job effectively? Do you they see your passion for the business? Do you all work well together as a team?
How about your client’s? Do they feel like they matter to your organization? Do they feel like you listen to what they need and then provide it?
If your answer to these questions is a resounding yes! then celebrate and do more of the same in 2011. If your answers are and it stings a little then perhaps the New Year should ring in some changes.
Food for thought…
Communication is critical. How many times have we heard or written statements like this? If it is so critical then why are most of us so poor at it?
As a small business owner communication is a key element to the overall health of your company. Effective communication takes work. Effective communication is also multi-directional.
It is important to communicate with each of your stakeholder groups:
- Your employees – employees are internal customers. If you do not communicate information about the company, projects, clients and other vital information they will begin to feel unimportant and undervalued. There may be many sub-groups within your company, i.e. sales; production; IT; accounting, etc. that may need to receive differnet messages.
- Your clients – some might say “duh” but precious few actually do it effectively. Part of effective client communication is consistency and clarity. Do a quick spot-check with your clients to find out how well you are communicating – ask them!
- Other Stakeholders – when managing projects it is essential to clearly communicate with all stakeholders – not just the ones who write the checks or do the work. There are other affected by your project and deserve to be informed. Effective communication can be tricky when there are multiple stakeholders but it is an important group that is sometimes excluded.
The message you communicate may need to be modified to fit your audience. This extra attention to detail can prove invaluable. Clear, consistent communication informs your audience. Clear, consistent communication builds trust and credibility with your stakeholders. Clear, consistent communication coupled with consistent follow-through can set you apart!
Effective communication can mean the difference between just fulfilling the client’s requirements and a client that is so ecstatic about their experience they cannot stop talking about your organization.
That’s what I want! How about you?