Great communication, according to our KCM Agency Code & Culture Handbook, includes listening for understanding, articulating ideas concisely, keeping an open mind despite differences of opinion, and maintaining composure in stressful situations. While our guidelines are common sense, we still codify them into our core values because while knowing is one thing, applying is another. Especially in a fast-paced work environment like our agency, how well we communicate with each other greatly impacts the success of our projects and our agency as a whole. Effective communication takes concerted time and effort and holding ourselves and each other accountable.
A team meeting at the KCM Agency bullpen.
1. Understanding yourself is a gateway to understanding others
In a Weekly Workshop led by our Associate Producer, Pei Juang, we each took the Myers-Briggs Personality Test and Love Language Test and shared the results with the rest of the agency. Though these personality tests are not rooted in exact science, the tests serve as useful tools that help us understand the more abstract and complicated aspects of our personalities, such as our psychological preferences, the way we perceive things, and the reasons we make certain decisions. Furthermore, the tests help us to identify each other’s preferred methods of learning and communication.
By applying these newly learned insights about ourselves and sharing them with others, we have fostered a more positive, dynamic workplace. For instance, when a teammate is having difficulty understanding a new project or concept, we can help them better by referring back to his or her learning style and personality traits and by taking a different approach, better suited for that person.
2. Communicate with others how you want to be communicated with
Underlying good communication is one thing, respect. When there’s a culture of respect in the workplace, teams will actively listen more and stay open-minded when discussing ideas and engaging with one another. While it takes time to earn respect from others, a great way to start building and maintaining that respect is by applying the Golden Rule to your daily communication practices – Communicate with others how you want to be communicated with.
Differences of opinion and mistakes are common and necessary in a vital, creative workplace. While unavoidable, just as important as how we deal with the circumstances, is how we deal with each other. It’s important to always treat each other with respect when communicating in order to maintain open, honest communication and feedback, which are necessary for creative team environments.
3. Treat your team like you treat your clients
When it comes to communicating with our clients, we go the extra mile to ensure that we are timely and honest. We are forthcoming and transparent to manage expectations and minimize assumptions that may jeopardize our communications. By also applying this practice internally, we improve professionalism and effectiveness among the members of our team.
Great communication leads to more than just great work results. It also serves as the foundation for a healthy company culture. Effective communication is essential in the process of creating and maintaining a culture that values trust and respect and is a shared responsibility by everyone within the company.
This post is part 2 of our KCM Culture series! Check back for more as we explore each of KCM Agency’s 7 Core Values!