Melvyn Tan
October 29, 2013 — By tanmelvyn@gmail.com

How Well Do You Communicate?

[blockquote source=”Proverbs 26:20 (NIV)“]Without wood a fire goes out; without a gossip a quarrel dies down[/blockquote] The first time I heard that you can actually get fired for gossiping is from the Entreleadership Podcast. As you probably know, Entreleadership is the book by Dave Ramsey. This is essentially a “playbook” where Dave shares the very […]

[blockquote source=”Proverbs 26:20 (NIV)“]Without wood a fire goes out; without a gossip a quarrel dies down[/blockquote]

The first time I heard that you can actually get fired for gossiping is from the Entreleadership Podcast.

As you probably know, Entreleadership is the book by Dave Ramsey. This is essentially a “playbook” where Dave shares the very same methods his company uses to not only achieve a high level of financial success, but also the satisfaction and joy from running the business.

What really intrigued me was the set of principles that he based his life upon after being bankrupt. He wrote, “As a Christian I made the decision to run every area of my life as consistently with the Bible as I could“. In fact, if you check out his company’s mission statement, it states “The Lampo Group, Inc, is providing biblically based, commonsense education and empowerment which gives HOPE to everyone from the financially secure to the financially distressed“.

Internally, one of their policies is the “no-gossip” policy. Essentially, it is not just about not talking behind people’s back. It is about a high level of communication at the company. And this high level of communication not only provides transparency but it also generates a high trust environment.

[blockquote source=”Dave Ramsey”]If you want to create a company that is fun to work for, where productivity and creativity are high, and that you are actually glad to lead, you must create a culture of communication.[/blockquote]

Knowing that you colleagues will not be badmouthing you behind your back, but if they have something to say about you, it will be to be said to you. Because nothing sucks the living daylight out of an organization more than distrust.

From the book, three key areas where communication is of paramount importance are:

  • The Big Goals: You need to share the dreams about the big goals – for instance, the central purpose around Dave’s company is giving HOPE.  In fact, the word HOPE is in all uppercase and italicized in the mission statement because that is the core of what they do.
  • The Story: Then you have to tell the story of why these goals matter and how it is literally encoded into what we do each day – how do they give HOPE in their day-to-day engagement with their clients?  They do not see sending the customer a book as merely shipping the book, but its about how that book can give HOPE to that financially distressed family.
  • The People: this is contextualizing the goal for every individual in the organization – This is extremely critical as without a clear idea of what expectations would look like, different people will have different interpretation of it.  As such, the Key Results Area for every member are clearly communicated to them.

Further, it is worth noting that better, clearer, and more effective communication leads to a greater level of trust, which in turn builds a higher quality of relationships in an organization. And of course great relationships amongst staff will foster greater engagement.

Application: examine the effectiveness of your communication as the leader of the organization by asking your staff these three key questions:

  • What are the big goals in our organizations?
  • What are our guiding principles for working towards these goals?
  • What are you doing to contribute to these goals?

Dear Father, as we learn to communicate more effectively with our work teams, as well as with our loved ones, help us be guided by the most important principle to adhere to; love. In Jesus name, Amen.