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6 Powerful Ways Leaders Can Create Unmuted Communication Cultures In The Workplace

Picture yourself in a meeting with high-powered officials.

 

A room filled with people from different departments, each with their ideas about the company’s direction: the group leader presents a proposal and then requests feedback.

 

The first person speaks up, but the managers prefer to avoid the idea.

 

Another person speaks up but is interrupted halfway through.

 

And then another one puts their arm up to make a point but changes their mind and takes it down again.

 

Finally, the group leader looks around expectantly and requests another comment, but the entire room has fallen silent.

 

Silence is an insidious thing. It can spread through an organisation like a virus, infecting everyone. Silence makes people think and question, and doubt can start.

 

Suddenly, an organisation finds itself with no new ideas, little engagement, and slow innovation.

 

Something must be done to encourage and foster a new culture where employees feel psychologically safe enough to speak up.  We need to unmute the workforce.

 

On The HR L&D Podcast, Global Communication Consultant, TEDx Speaker, Trainer and Author Heather Hansen talked to Nick Day, CEO at JGA Recruitment, about how business leaders can foster unmuted communication cultures where every voice is heard, resulting in greater inclusion, innovation and efficiency across remote and global teams.

 

So, how do you foster an unmuted communication culture in your organisation?

 

The culture at a workplace is just like the atmosphere. It can be either pleasant or unpleasant.

 

The most successful organisations have a culture where people feel comfortable speaking up if they have ideas or solutions to problems.

 

This uplifting, unmuted workplace environment makes it easier for people to bring ideas to the table. As a result, people feel extremely comfortable making suggestions, asking questions, and respectfully disagreeing with their managers without fear of incrimination or retribution.

 

In a speak-up culture, disagreements don’t turn into fights but instead lead to more openness and trust between employees and management. Everyone believes they can provide feedback without fear. As a result, a muted culture evolves into an unmuted culture of innovation and ideas.

 

To help you solve the problem of a “muted culture,” here are 6 top ways you can unleash the potential of your members and make them proactive inside the workplace.

 

1.) Embrace Cultural change to create a culture of openness and transparency.

 

Starting at the top is essential when fostering a “speak up” culture in your company. Leaders must look at this as a training gap to be plugged; instead, broader cultural change is required to help create a culture of openness and transparency that encourages ideas and innovation and fosters an environment of inclusion.

 

HR needs to play a strategic role in this process by fostering workplace environments that encourage its employees to feel empowered to speak up to drive innovation in the workplace.

 

It’s not just about having skills; it’s about creating a workplace where people feel safe speaking up when they have problems, concerns, or ideas.

 

The first step is ensuring you’re creating an unmuted environment where people feel comfortable speaking up when they have concerns. It may appear obvious but cultivating such an open environment necessitates skills in listening so that leaders understand how to hear what others have to say actively.

 

It means being willing to set aside preconceived notions and genuinely listening to consider other people’s thoughts.  It also means avoiding shaming or blaming anyone who speaks up when there is a problem or concern.

 

2.) Facilitated discussion with top leaders

 

No matter your title or position, you can help to create a more vocal workplace. However, it may involve working with senior leaders to help you foster a new culture where people feel psychologically safe about speaking their minds.

 

It also involves being proactive in setting the tone and getting buy-in from the top. Begin by having a dialogue with your C-Suite in your organisation to discover what an “unmuted” workplace looks like for them.

 

It’s also helpful to gauge everyone’s comfort level with being more vocal—what are their fears, concerns, or hesitations? Having these discussions allows everyone to understand each other better, which will help them work together towards mutually beneficial goals.

 

3.) Run social campaigns to eliminate hesitations.

 

You need to help them press the unmute button.

 

Running social campaigns throughout the company can help.

 

Start conducting webinars and discussion groups that can help build confidence and help employees feel comfortable about speaking up and developing ideas.

 

4.) Social network analysis

 

Social network analysis is a type of data analysis that uses social networking data to find out where the connections are, who communicates with whom, and who is left out of the discussion.

 

You can identify your company’s true advocates with big data and computing.

 

Keep a record of who is open to expressing ideas and who needs a little push. Tracking these tiny details helps you find the right person and leverage their potential.

 

5.) Build agile methodologies

 

In addition to having a policy that encourages employees to speak up, you also need a structure that can handle their feedback.

 

Agile methodologies are perfect for this purpose because they encourage constant communication and collaboration between all levels of the organisation.

 

By breaking down walls and creating transparent, two-way communication channels, agile methodologies will encourage employees at all levels of the company to bring their ideas forward and voice their concerns.

 

6.) Collective meetups

 

Having space and time for ideas to flow freely is the final step in fostering an idea-generating, unmuted culture. Giving the team the time and space to share their ideas openly is essential.

 

You can also suggest or facilitate workshops on creative thinking and brainstorming, making it easier for team members to develop new ideas.

 

This is where regular team meetings become helpful because they allow team members to share their new ideas and get feedback from their peers. These meetings also help set objectives, identify areas for improvement, and provide a safe forum for celebrating successes.

 

Create an empowered environment to drive maximum innovation and success.

 

If employees view their manager as someone who values and listens to employees who speak up and offer new ideas, then other employees are more likely to do the same.   On the other hand, if employees sense that their manager is more concerned with keeping as they are, if they feel their manager will be resistant change and to new ways of doing things then they may remain hesitate about speaking up.

 

However, by empowering voices, employees in your business can begin to unmute themselves to contribute to conversations that matter proactively.

 

Through conscious, confident, and connected communication, organisations can leverage the power of collective potential to solve the most complex organisational challenges.

 

When companies create a culture of openness and transparency, employees feel empowered to share their ideas and come up with solutions to problems they see at work.

 

Who knows, maybe in your new unmuted culture, the next idea or solution that an employee brings to the table could be the one that totally and positively transforms your business for the better.

 

Want to stay up to date with the latest HR news? 

Kate Upcraft

Celebrating a Career in Payroll with Kate Upcraft #75

Kate is a renowned payroll character, influencer, speaker, lecturer, technical writer, consultant, and in my view, just a great personality who has given everything to the profession and will leave a big hole in the payroll community when she finally hangs up her payroll boots at the end of March.  This is Kate’s story – the highs, lows, memories, achievements, and the payroll friends she has made along the way.

HMRC Transforming Payroll in a Pandemic with Joanna Rowland #58

Joanna is an experienced Director General at HMRC. Joanna was also Programme Director for the Making Tax Digital project.  We discuss how HMRC managed to navigate the rapid changes required in response to the COVID pandemic. We discover how, against a backdrop of highly pressurised circumstances, HMRC successfully managed and responded to the many challenges they faced. From CJRS and changing furlough guidance to rapid testing and national legislation rollouts!

Investing & Integrating HR Tech with Robert Hicks #34

Robert Hicks, Group Human Resources Director at Reward Gateway joins Nick on the HR L&D Podcast to talk about HR tech, employee wellbeing, reward programmes and Diversity and Inclusion.  Listen to this episode to discover why all firms should be considering investing in HR innovation and technology – not just the big brands!

Improving Financial Health through Payroll with James Herbert #55

Can we drive and improve financial health and productivity through payroll by enabling employees to choose when they receive their earned pay? We speak to the CEO and Founder of Hastee, James Herbert, to find out. With two-thirds of UK workers affected by personal finance-related stress in 2020, (but with less than one in five businesses offering a financial wellbeing programme to combat these challenges) we discuss pay on-demand services and how the role payroll could play in improving financial wellness for employees.

HR, Performance, & Attention to Detail with Chris Denny #33

Reduce mistakes, improve task accuracy, and improve overall productivity. Chris Denny is a researcher, trainer, author and consultant who specialises in working with individuals and organizations to become more detail-oriented. Following over 6 years of research, Chris has developed a system that can improve performance with attention to detail. Listen in to find out more.

Childcare Conundrum

The Childcare Provision Conundrum for Working Parents with Tom Broome #28

The Childcare Provision Conundrum for Working Parents with Tom Broome #28

Childcare Benefits

 

Nick Day is joined on The HR L&D Podcast sofa by Tom Broome is the founder of Playcare, an innovative childcare marketplace bridging the gap between parents and childcare providers. It is an innovative proposition that helps forward-thinking employers to support parent to discover, book and make huge savings on childcare.

Childcare benefits can help providers to maximise occupancy for providers, build loyalty for employers and offer huge support for working parents.

In this “The Childcare Provision Conundrum for Working Parents” episode with Tom Broome on The HR L&D Podcast, we also explore:

  1. What does the world of Childcare and Employee Benefits look like from an HR perspective?
  2. What’s changed for working parents and how can we apply these changes to improve childcare provision?
  3. How parents can solve the childcare provider conundrum
  4. How childcare provision can be partnered with employee benefits and why this benefits employers
  5. How to run childcare benefits through payroll
  6. The childcare industry is under a ton of pressure but, Tom explains why there is hope!
  7. Playcare is a childcare benefit that delivers for working parents. Discover, how to make huge savings on childcare with help from forward-thinking employers.

Links highlighted in this “The Childcare Provision Conundrum for Working Parents” episode are included below:

Of course, if you are an HR or L&D Leader listening to this podcast and you have an HR-related vacancy that you would love some specialist human resources recruitment support with – please also get in touch with me!  I would love to help show you what a great HR recruitment experience feels like!  You can reach out to me directly at nick@jgarecruitment.com or give me a call – 01727800377

www.jgarecruitment.com

Thanks for listening folks – I look forward to bringing you the next episode of the HR L&D Podcast real soon

Performance Culture

Creating High-Performing Cultures with Chief People Officer, Jason Treu #022

Creating high-performing cultures with Chief People Officer, Jason Treu #022

 

Jason TreuRecorded prior to the current COVID-19 Pandemic, Nick Day sat down with best-selling author and Chief People Officer, Jason Treu  – a culture and leadership expert who helps leaders, managers and HR professionals build high-performing cultures and teams with unbreakable connection, extreme scrappiness and the ability to have courageous conversations.

Jason knows how to increase productivity by creating engaged and happy workforces and today he shares with us his blueprint process for creating high-performing cultures!

Jason Treu is the best-selling author of “Social Wealth”, which has sold more than 45,000 copies. He believes the lack of employee engagement in the workplace is killing productivity, which is costing industries billions.   For Jason, the solution is simple: Employee Connection.   This is a subject he has talked about as a featured TedX speaker, where at TEDxWilmington 2017, he unveiled his breakthrough team building game, Cards Against Mundanity.

He also hosts Executive Breakthroughs, a podcast that brings together game-changing CEOs, entrepreneurs, and experts to share their breakthroughs and breakdowns.

In this “Creating high-performing cultures with Chief People Officer, Jason Treu podcast episode, we discover:

  1. How can companies create a high-performance culture like the companies we often see listed on things like “Forbes Best Companies to Work”?
  2. What are the key concepts business leaders need to understand if they want to create a high-performing culture?
  3. What actions can businesses take, regardless of size, that can help them expedite the process?
  4. So tell me more about your game, Cards Against Mundanity!
  5. What tips you can give leaders to help them to uncover potential “blind spots” or negative patterns that may be inhibiting success?
  6. Why do leaders get stuck or feel restless if they don’t take action?
  7. Find out more about Jason’s research where he discovers a connection between children who have suffered trauma and business inhibitors to success.
  8. Social Wealth is a book which you have written which is a ‘how-to-guide’ on building personal and professional relationships. It has sold more than 60,000 copies and has held #1 spot across four business and self-help categories!  In the book, you discover what you believe is the biggest predictor for success – and its called “Social Wealth”.  We find out more about this…
  9. What to do if you have hit a plateau in your career
  10. What are the 10 essential leadership skill sets that can help these business leaders to feel motivated again, increase resiliency and bounce back from rejection and setbacks?
  11. Learn the three secrets to networking that the top super connectors to speed up the relationship-building process and get people to help you (Hint – Introverts can easily do this).

To find out more about this “Creating high-performing cultures with Chief People Officer, Jason Treu” episode of the HR L&D Podcast is highlighted below:

Subscribe the HR L&D Podcast: Apple PodcastsAndroidEmailRSSMore

Of course, if you are an HR or L&D professional listening to this podcast and you have an HR, HRIS or L&D related vacancy that you would love some specialist HR recruitment support with – please also get in touch with me!

I would love to help show you what a great HR recruitment experience feels like!  You can reach out to me directly at nick@jgarecruitment.com or give me a call – 01727800377

Thanks for listening  – I look forward to bringing you the next episode of the HR L&D Podcast real soon!

Best Wishes,

Nick Day | JGA HR Recruitmentnick@jgarecruitment.com 01727800377

The Payroll Billionaire: Philanthropy, Baha’i Faith & Unifying Society – Steve Sarowitz #043

The Payroll Billionaire.  Steve Sarowitz joins Nick Day on the Payroll Podcast to talk Philanthropy, The Baha’i Faith; and Unifying Society

Steve is Founder and Chairman of Paylocity, a leading U.S. provider of payroll and HR solutions; CEO of International Payroll Provider, Blue Marble; and Director of UK Payroll Provider, Payescape.  Steve also plans to give away £1billion to charity during his lifetime.  Payroll Entrepreneur, Filmmaker and Passionate Philanthropist, this is one episode you do not want to miss!