Creating an Employee Newsletter for Workplace Wellness and Well Being

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Your company’s EAP will be worth what you paid for it if employees and supervisors are always thinking about it. We call this “thinking EAP.” Does your EAP newsletter make that happen? It is just about the only tool in an EAP’s arsenal of publicity and promotion that can accomplish this feat.

This means you must have monthly 2-page employee newsletter distributed by your EAP provider. If you don’t have an EAP newsletter, get ready, because you will go searching for one after you read what follows.

There are new concepts in employee newsletter design. One of the EAP field’s most creative innovations is a complete turnkey newsletter that a company can call its own, or even change the name. These editable newsletter products (search editable employee newsletters to locate one) give you a finished newsletter with the ability to make edits on the fly. Insert staff pictures, articles, or just leave them alone. These are time savers and impressive tools.

Always ask for a couple pages worth of testimonials when you purchase such a newsletter because you want to see the full scope of subscriber experience.

A monthly newsletter, as opposed to a bimonthly or quarterly newsletter will increase your EAP’s utilization by employees, its visibility, and its value. It will also reduce risk associated with troubled and volatile employees with personal problems.

Make sure you newsletters is completely editable, web-usable, and e-mail-forwardable to employees. Everything – text, graphics, pictures, even the name of the publication must be subject to change by you! But it should also be ready to use the moment it comes ready to go right out of the envelope.

So, is your current employee newsletter hurting or helping? Things could be worse than you think.

I have seen practically every EAP and work-life newsletter available. I think most newsletter programs cost too much by the way. Many EA professionals hold their breath when they distribute unchangeable, “boiler-plate” newsletters with articles they don’t think say the right thing. Often, discussion of topics are far too broad. They don’t focus on conquering work-life problems EAPs see everyday.

Some only talk about “counseling” and miss many other EAP functions. And others give too much information so employees don’t have an incentive to call the EAP. This increases risk to the organization by decreasing your utilization. In other words, employees become motivated to treat themselves instead of seeing a professional.

Do employees read all four pages of a quarterly newsletter? If they don’t, this lowers EAP visibility and is an awful waste of money. Still, EAPs have been forced to accept the “quarterly newsletter standard”–until now. Frankly, I think quarterly distribution of a newsletter is too little visibility. You should have to hear “employees already have too much to read.”

And one more point: Those newsletters that do mention the EAP often use incorrect terms like “EAP counselor” instead of the officially recognized term, “EA professional.” This shows they are not produced by active EA professional publishers.

These are critical points. Non-EAP publishers do not understand this. EAPs can do more to improve their image with the right newsletter. That’s why they need a editable format in MS Publisher or MS Word.

You must control the content of your newsletter

An active licensed mental health professional should author your newsletter,

No one is an expert on your EAP except you!

That’s why you must be able to approve or change everything in a newsletter. No two EAPs are alike, and no two EAP newsletters should be, either.

Are you starting to see the value of the FRONTLINE EMPLOYEE? Well, hold on to your hat and read on…

If you have tortured yourself (or another staff member)to produce any type of newsletter in-house, the days of late issues, skipped issues, and other production problems are over. The FRONTLINE EMPLOYEE arrives monthly, not quarterly! It’s two pages, not four!

That’s 50% more to read per year – with content more likely to be read than a quarterly publication! And, it is NEVER mailed late.

In 10 years of EAP newsletter publishing and health care marketing, we have shown that frequency, not quantity, matters. Frequency maximizes the “top-of-mind visibility” of your EAP among the workforce. This is simple, practical, marketing theory. And it doesn’t cost more. It costs LESS with the FRONTLINE EMPLOYEE!

How it Works…

THE FRONTLINE EMPLOYEE comes ready to reproduce, but also on a diskette or by e-mail on or before the first day of each month. You choose the format: Microsoft Publisher (probably on your computer right now), a PDF file, text-only Word® or WordPerfect®, or full graphics pasted onto a Word document. If you have another way you want us to send it, just ask.

Edit anything, or accept the monthly issue as it was produced. Change articles, create your own title, or add pictures or your own articles. You can also use our articles in your current in-house-produced newsletter. Do anything you wish except give FRONTLINE EMPLOYEE to another EAP or distribute it outside your EAP’s service boundaries.

If you don’t use MS Publisher (easy and available for under $99), choose the imprint option. Your newsletter will arrive preprinted with your EAP name and phone number already on it. We will add information along with a logo for your EAP on page one by removing the bottom-left article at no extra charge.

If you are an EAP provider or external vendor, create different titles to suit the desires of your EAP customers. (HINT: Charge customers for the newsletter and make it a profit center.) As you can see, the FRONTLINE EMPLOYEE is truly a cutting edge newsletter program.

Articles that EAPs Want and Employees Need

Content of THE FRONTLINE EMPLOYEE rotates around 12 major topics we have uniquely grouped from our EAP experience and by staying on top of hot EAP issues!

1) Workplace Relationships,

2) Worker Productivity,

3) Family, Home, and Community,

4) Personal Fitness,

5) Personal Effectiveness and Goal Achievement,

6) Team Building and Productivity,

7) Health Education,

8) Hot Health Topics,

9) Stress Management Tips,

10) EAP Education for Employees,

11) Workplace Safety and Injury Prevention, and

12) Customer Service Issues.

Because we are a true EAP publication, we tackle articles others miss, like handling yourself in a corrective interview; how EAPs can help you if you are injured; unique employee questions about the EAP; handling HMO problems; working with your therapist; diversity and respectful workplace issues; practical tips on goal achievement; customer service and stress; injury prevention and safety; questions on substance abuse and recovery; communicating with your supervisor; and much more.

And here is something that will make you pinch yourself – we accept suggestions on topics for future issues. Just go to our web site to register your input!

I’ve said enough. Subscribe today!

Print the brochure and FAX EVERYTHING FOR THE FASTEST SERVICE.

Remember, if the FRONTLINE EMPLOYEE doesn’t increase the value, visibility, and utilization rate of your EAP, cancel for a full refund at any time up to and including the last issue!

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Source by Daniel Feerst

Appearance-Obsession in the Workplace

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When you are deliberately thinking ‘Dress for Success’ and keep up with updates in fashion and styles, you are not obsessed with appearance, at least not yet.

Particular women and men that are appearance-obsessed are preoccupied daily with their looks in their private lives as well as in their workplace. Enormous amounts of resources are devoted to achieve conformity with the changing fashion, beauty and cosmetics innovations.

What are the signs of appearance obsession in the workplace?

Here is a list of questions given to me by a Holly, a young female executive who admits that a great deal of her working day is spent in questioning and obsessing over her appearance and the others’ reaction to her looks.

How do I look in the clothes that I am wearing now?

How do I look from the back? From the side?

Do these clothes make me look fat?

How do other women look today?

What are they wearing to work?

Who looks ‘hot’ in the meeting today?

How many in the office have noticed me today?

Should I go home and change during lunch?

What cosmetic procedure can fix some blemishes?

Who are the cosmetic surgeons to the stars?

These questions and many more take away from Holly’s ability to focus on her projects and deal with her subordinates, not to mention meeting dead lines…

When Holly looks back at her last year’s job performance she feels ashamed, lack of self respect and pride. Holly was fired from a prestigious position. She could not focused, deliver, nor couls she meet dead lines. Holly became one of my executive coaching clients just after her recent job lose.

What is happening here?

Obsession with perfection, beauty and appearance has been growing fast in this culture. This obsession is fed by TV shows like Extreme Makeover and other programs that ‘educate’ the public about how easy it is to construct a perfect look. Some women who were more sensitive than others to their appearance become more obsessed as our culture is exposed to mega dosages of cosmetics and plastic surgery possibilities.

The New Workplace Issue

Considering the pervasiveness of this new obsession; what is the chance that a young female worker will feel comfortable with her own appearance at a new workplace? Or even veteran woman who is now in a new role? Growing in our culture, women today are trapped, thinking their presence is about attractiveness, beauty and the size of their body parts.

Co-workers and workplace culture play a major role in how women react to their own bodies, and specifically their appearance in spite of themselves. Some women in this culture easily fall into a “man-made” trap. The need for perfection in body size and shape coupled with changing fashions and looks that are ‘in’ or ‘out’ creates pressures on women in the workplace that need to be addressed.

There are health and psychological consequences to the new phenomenon; using our bodies to express fashion/beauty trends seems to induce a new emotion in the general population: shame. That is not shame about behaviors or acts but shame about our natural and healthy bodies and the normal process of aging. Obsessions may develop as an attempt to deal with shame and/or through the effort to cover up that disturbing feeling. Making one’s appearance the center of one’s being is exceeding the boundaries of what is beneficial to the workplace and for the mental health of its members.

In my experience, poor body-image and appearance-obsession are issues that will respond well and be helped by coaching and if necessary, psychotherapy.

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Source by Nili Sachs, Ph.D

Personal Communication is Critical to Deterring Rumors and Soothing Employee Concerns

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If you want to dispel the anxiety growing in your workplace, build a foundation of trust built on communication. When times are tough, the workplace rumor mill swings into action act quickly. Therefore, managers need to communicate openly and honestly with employees to stop rumors in their tracks. Here are five tips to help managers ease employee anxiety.

1. Be Accessible

As a senior leader, you need to be accessible and visible to your employees. When there is a problem, don't wait until all the details of the solution have been fleshed out before informing your workers. Instead, inform them of your progress along the way as the decisions are being made. In uncertain times, it is more important than ever to be accessible. You're not just there to share information with the workforce, but to build trust with them along the way, and dispel rumors as they spring up.

2. Don't Hide From Bad News

Your workforce knows times are rough and that the company will need to make changes to adapt, so there is no reason to keep bad news from them. Trying to pretend that all is well will only result in a distrustful workforce, and communicating with them will become even more tough. The best course of action to stop rumors and gossip is to communicate openly with your employees about the changes that are planned. If they trust that you will give them the updates and information they seek, your employees will stop gossiping and wait to hear the truth from you.

3. Emphasize Personal Communication

A majority of bad news is communicated through memos and e-mails. While it may seem more time effective when every second counts, workplace productivity is effected by such impersonal communication. Studies prove that in-person communication develops confidence and is understood better than a less personal approach. True, you may be faced with questions you aren't prepared for, but that is okay. Employees don't expect you to know all the answers, but have real appreciation for your effort at keeping them part of the process by talking directly to them.

4. Listen

It is a massive advantage of face-to-face conversations that the communication is two-way. Your employees may be able to suggest solutions that will help the situation, but this is not the only advantage of listening. Knowing that their thoughts and reactions have value to you will inspire your workforce, and will help them to feel a part of the company and with you as their manager.

5. Recognize There Are Still Unanswered Questions

It is important to be honest when talking to your employees, both about what you know and about what is still unknown. Because people understand that no-one can know everything, it will build conviction and understanding if you can detail what is still unclear. If you are unsure about the future, it is better to discuss the prospects for the company and probabilities for success rather than making promises that might not be kept.

Communication is the bedrock of good management practice, and the only way to get the best out of your workforce. Make sure you communicate openly, honestly, and readily.

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Source by Wendy Mack

Communicating Change in an Organization

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Successful organizational change requires the use of effective change processes. Communication is the key component of such processes because organizational change relies on changing employee's behavior. Organization development focuses on planned change and the systematic application of behavioral science to increase organizational effectiveness.

OBSTACLES OF COMMUNICATION CHANGES

The following factors are the obstacles for changes in an organization:

RESISTANCE

This happens, when employees meet any change with some level of resistance, therefore, plan for resistance. To accomplish this, identity and address the sources of resistance. Several ways to counteract and reduce employee resistance include education, communication, participation, support and negotiation.

INGRAINED HABITS

To obtain the fullest potentials benefits from change, employee's attitudes and behaviors are a consideration. Instituting of a quality of work life process to bring employees into the decision making process and let them be active participants in change is helpful. Design a communications process that allows employees to participate in making decisions and solving potential problems. Identity and address employee stress related to the change process.

Here are 6 key things to keep in mind when planning, announcing, implementing, and communicating a change initiative.

1. Remember that there is no one perfect way to communicate change: Change is uncomfortable, and adapting to change is messy. The perfect Gantt chart does not a painless change experience make. Why? Because tasks are easy to list, but behavior and long held habits are not easy to change.It is good to gather information, solicit perspectives, and adapt the approach for your organization and group.

2. Start by asking yourself what exactly is changing and why. Too many programs are heavy on the jargon and light on the substance of what the buzz phrases mean in the day-to-day reality of the organization people. There is a need to go the root of what you are trying to achieve from an organizational behavior perspective, and give the jargon life.

3. Know what results you want, ideally from the change initiative and the communication. There should be what is the call to action for the specific communication tactic? What systematic or operations change are under way that provide the framework for the desired results and behaviors.

4. Try as much as possible to include communication strategy: At the very beginning of the discussions about the change, on the strategic team from the start, too often communicators are involved after backlash is in full force, when the leaks and rumor mills are rampant.

5. Share information with employees: There is a real dilemma in public companies, where investor communication is a priority and employees hear about a merger or reorganization on their car radio while commuting to work. Once fear and insecurity are heightened, you waste a lot of time getting back to a place of order, understanding and productivity, and many people head for their desks to call employment recruiters.

6. Longevity: Remember that a change effort starts with the announcement or a merger or change initiative. Many leaders and managers underestimate the length of time required by a change cycle. That is why numerous reports indicate poor performance following many IPOs, Mergers, change initiatives, etc. Just has Rome been not built in a day, neither do people and organizations change in a week, or even a year. Think of it as changing some very ingrained habits.

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Source by Martin Hahn

Workplace Gossip Is a Career Killer

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Here is a sad truth: some people never really leave high school. Even as adults you will still find them hanging out and spreading the latest gossip with their friends. The problem is that no matter how they go about it, a workplace gossip is absolutely killing their own career. It is one thing to spend a few minutes chatting about the latest ball scores or last night's "Castle" episode, or to discuss the co-worker who has just returned from maternity leave, in a positive manner. It's quite another thing altogether to be dishing the dirt on anyone or anything at work without any thought to their feelings.

Here is the truth: no one really trusts a gossip. If you pay close attention, you will see that their careers are going nowhere fast. Now, what does this have to do with you as you are hunting for a new job? The best resume and cover letter in the world is not going to change what your boss has to say about you when he or she is called about a reference. If you think that your boss either does not know you are a gossip or is not going to say anything about it, you're completely wrong. Your boss will mention it to your potential employer and it will hurt your chances at a new company.

Gossips are rarely liked and it is even more rare that they are trusted with sensitive material. More importantly, being a workplace gossip means you have two character traits that employers absolutely loathe; you have the potential to cause discord in the workplace and you waste time when you should be working. Gossip often harms people and damages relationships. This is obviously very bad for the work environment. An employer needs to hire people who work well together and a gossip can often bring out the worst in people, not the best. Now, the wasting time issue is obviously self-explanatory. You are being hired to do a job. You are not being hired talk about people behind their backs.

So, the question is what do you do if you have been the go-to person for the latest dirt? Here is my advice. Knock it off now. After just a few weeks, people will completely forget all about your past as the ultimate gossip and you can start to build healthier and non-gossip based relationships with your co-workers.

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Source by Erin Kennedy

Cyber-Bullying in the Workplace – When Bullies Use Technology to Launch Their Attacks

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"You should know better." That was the ominous text message Laura, a Registered Nurse at a large medical center, received from 20 people at 11 am one morning ….

She was astounded. What was happening, she wondered? What did the message mean? And why would anyone-let alone 20 people-text her with the same message?

Laura went home that night shaken and perplexed. After a sleepless night, she figured it out. She had been at her job for only a week. She had replaced a popular supervisor, who had left abruptly without explanation. Her employer had assured Laura that her staff would accept her. Obviously, they had not.

Laura's co-workers were taking advantage of an electronic means of workplace bullying, relatively new to the workplace. Laura was the target of cyber-bullying. Cyber-bullying is harassment using technology-cell phones, email or the Internet, for example. While the term was first applied to teenagers, it is rapidly being used to apply to behavior adults are experiencing in the workplace as well.

Cyber-bullying can take workplace bullying to a new level. All of us know how quickly emails can spread information. Imagine how the word spreads when emails or text messages broadcast unverified rumors about a target.

Also, where bullying in the workplace usually pits one bully against one target, cyber-bullying can easily take the form of cyber-mobbing where you have many people against one target. All that workplace bullies need to know is your email address or phone number. They can remain anonymous under an assumed email identity, or block their number when calling you.

Knowing this, here's what you can do to curb cyber-bullying or even cyber-mobbing:

o Save emails that contain bullying messages. Your company may have a way to find out who owns that account, and you can then block that email address from sending you anything. In addition, the email can serve as evidence that you are being bullied.

o Don't use your work email address for anything other than work. Set up a different email account for personal use.

o Don't tell online "friends" (the ones you know through social networking sites) your company name. It's relatively easy to figure out someone's work email address if you know her name and the company she works for.

o Find out if your email program has a filter that allows only those on your "safe" list to send you emails. They have to be approved by you. Download an email verification program from the Internet that ensures you are in control of who sends you emails. Any unknown sender has to first apply to you – you can accept or decline any email address request.

o As far as text messaging goes, you can also block phone numbers, once you identify a bully's number. Simply call your cell phone company to arrange the block.

Cyber-bullying is a very passive form of bullying. It is as serious as any other form of bullying at work and has the potential to be even more insidious. You can take steps to block and verify who contacts you in order to gain back some control. Remember, the bully's nature is to try and take your power because they feel they do not have their own. You do not have to give them anything and you have every right to set up these personal boundaries. You are worth it!

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Source by Valerie Cade

The Mechanics of Communication

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In order to formulate powerful communication statements and get your message across with influence, you firstly need to step back and analyze the mechanics of communication.

So what are the mechanics of communication?

The mechanics of communication are often used in communication training to explain how communication works at the technical level. This concept also is very helpful in increasing awareness of how you communicate and probably not something you would normally think through.

Communication can be broken-down into three core areas.

  1. The Communication Components
  2. The Communication Message
  3. The Communication Process

Lets explore each one of these areas.

1. The Communication Components

The components of communication separate into 3 points.

They are words, tone and non-verbal, or normally referred to as body language. These all take up a certain percentage of the message meaning.

According to some experts words equate to approx 7% of the message, tone 35% and Non-verbal 58%. I think this may differ depending on the context of the communication, but the interesting point here is how little words contribute in the overall percentage amount. How much time do you spend trying to get your words right, when the other two components far out weigh in their contribution to the meaning of the message.

Next time you are in an important face to face conversation with someone, become more aware of how you sound and what your body language is contributing to the meaning of the message.

2. The Communication Message

Leading on from the components we can now look at the next area, the communication message. When you are conducting face to face dialogue the message can be separated into 2 independent parallel messages that are being sent.

The information message and the emotional response message.

The information message comprises of the words and facts, whilst the emotional response message comprises of the emotions you are conveying in the message. This explains why sometimes a communication message can lead to misunderstanding and in-congruence. How often have you spoken to someone who is using all the right words but you receive a different emotional response message. For example you may have experienced this common thought “What they’re saying sounds fine but I don’t know what it is.. I just don’t trust them.” Another example may be when someone is telling you what they perceive you want to hear, but at the emotional level you just don’t feel comfortable with the emotional responses you are receiving. Something doesn’t fit.

Most people have not been taught how to communicate about some of the underlying feelings they are experiencing. This would explain why people focus more on the information portion of the message because it seems easier. Part of this is probably cultural conditioning, the other part is most people have never learned how.

Next time you are in a conversation become more aware of what feelings you are experiencing during the communication. If you start to feel uncomfortable or not sure, just slow the communication down and ask more questions to help clarify what is really being said. Don’t just rely on their information message for the meaning.

3. The Communication Process.

The third core area of communication relates to the systematic way communication works.

Simply explained there are 3 steps.

1. Producing and sending the message

2. Receiving and interpreting the message

3. The giving and receiving of feedback.

Most people do this by second nature so the suggestion is to become more strategic and aware of using the 3rd point of feedback. Use more questioning techniques to help drill down to gain the correct meaning for example.

In Summary

In order to tie all three points into something practical here this is what I suggest.

Next time you are having face to face communication with someone, focus on becoming more reflective in your style by asking more questions or paraphrasing to gain clarity. Doing more of this helps to slow down the communication to give you more time to identify some of the drivers that may be forming in-congruent emotional response messages, as well as checking the non-verbal expressions that they are sending.

Analyzing the Mechanics of Communication may seem like a lot more effort and work when you are talking to someone but if you stick at it you will be amazed at how easy it becomes to go deeper with people. Which is sometimes necessary to enter in to more honest and open communication.

I hope you enjoyed this article on communication skills training and good luck with improving your communication.

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Source by David Patmore

How Professionals Benefit From Communication Skills Training Courses

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Communication plays a key role in all facets of a business. Effective communication in the workplace starts with not just finding your own voice, but the right tone of voice to deliver your message. Business letters, memos and letters you write can benefit from an expert and authoritative style. When you communicate well with your clients and within your industry, your professional peers will take notice and you will begin to climb through the ranks.

Effective Speaking Can Help You To Accomplish More

Workplace productivity is greatly improved through effective communication. In the business world, time is money. So, when it is about explaining details to your team members, your communication skills will pay off. The ability to speak and communicate clearly will save you a lot of time. Moreover, excellent communication skills save you the trouble of having misunderstood communications with your team or clients that could potentially upset your work.

Opportunities Are Limitless For Individuals Who Can Talk Clearly

Whether you are trying to get your dream job or vying for promotion, training on effective communication skills will help you to achieve your goals. Employers and managers are constantly on the lookout for individuals who can articulately express themselves. Believe it or not, the way you communicate influences your performance at work and makes you seem like the ideal candidate.

Good Communication Skills Help In Solving Problems Quickly

Irrespective of the industry, every professional runs into problems in their workplace. In fact, there are some jobs that are all about problem-solving. Communication plays a pivotal role in many challenges and problems in the workplace. It is often said that many problems are solved through effective communication.

In addition to the above, there are other aspects of using communication training courses. These are as follows:

  1. Helps individuals to become good salesman: The marketplace today is flooded with innumerable products and services. Even though some products are better than others, they miss the limelight because the sales team lacks skills to communicate with the targeted market. With the help of training, individuals will be able to develop marketing and persuading skills.
  2. Development of a personal brand is encouraged: To stand out in the crowd, it is important that individuals are able to develop a personality of their own. Unless you have a personal brand that people can quickly identify when they look at you, you are probably going to fall behind in the race and lose out on your dream job or promotion.
  3. Improved personal and social relations: The workplace is not just for working, it is also for networking and making friends. Without good communication skills, you will not be able to mix with your team members. As you improve your verbal and non-verbal skills, you will be able to develop and maintain better social and personal relations.

Some are born talkers whilst others have to develop the skills through training. If you are someone who lacks effective communication skills and finds it difficult to put your thoughts and views across, you must consider enrolling for a training course. Since training courses today are also available online, you do not have to worry about the course hampering your other prior commitments. Alternatively, you can also opt for face-to-face training courses or arrange for communication skills training at your workplace.

A lot of people have benefited from communication training courses and you will too. All you have to do is search for accredited courses that are conducted by industry experts. Also, make sure to go through the course module to determine whether they are offering the things that you are looking for. Register yourself and see the difference in your attitude and personality within days. In addition to improving the way you communicate, these training courses will also help to make you feel more confident about yourself.

Enroll for a communication course today and embark on a life-changing journey.

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Source by David Rickersey

Process Improvement Through Benefit Communication

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When I worked at Westvaco, I faced a variety of challenges in getting our various processes to perform at the levels we wanted and expected them to. I found that it was never a single large problem that needed to be fixed, but a series of little problems that held us back from being as effective or as profitable as we wanted to be.

During my twenty plus years as a Plant engineer, I learned lots of interesting technical tricks for getting the most out of any machine. My maintenance manager and I seldom just repaired anything. We always tried to find a way to make it better. Sometimes our trial taught us why something was designed that way in the first place, but we always learned from our mistakes and did better next time.

Preventative maintenance to us was more about constant improvement than it was improving the status quo. We were always on the lookout for ways to make things run faster, easier and most of all be more reliable. Despite the fact that we loved tinkering with stuff, we really did not like working on stuff that was broken and managers were anxious to get going again.

No matter what miracle we pulled out of our pockets to get stuff going after a breakdown, there was still lost production during the time it was down to dealt with and communicated to upper managers. Some of my bosses dealt with these situations better than others. Some motivated us to do a better job and some did not. Looking back on these times I now have a much better understanding of how to motivate employees to do a good job no matter what the circumstances.

After working on number of process improvement projects, I learned that the most important element in the success of any project was the people involved in it. If even one member of the team had an interest in the project failing, then he could drag the whole project down. And the team members must learn to communicate with each other as well as those who will benefit from the project.

After leaving Westvaco, I did a stint in sales. I soon found I did not know the least thing about sales. I finally thanked my new employer for giving me a chance but told him he would be better off without me. I then set out to learn all I could about sales and marketing.

The result of these studies has changed my life and the way I approach problems. I sure wish I had had these skills when I was at Westvaco because I sure could have done a better job of communicating funding requests and project benefits.

So what is my new approach to process improvement? I look for the benefits to all involved. Everyone involved must benefit for the process improvement to be a success. And these benefits have to be effectively communicate to each one. You can; t assume they will appreciate what you are trying to accomplish.

And the basic steps I have learned from those who manifest their own destiny are listed here.

Step one: Know what you are trying to accomplish. This is often way harder than it sounds. In any business situation, there are many conflicting parameters that are involved in any project. The key to success is to figure out what you want to accomplish and figure out what are your real limitations and what are the limits that you have artificially imposed on yourself.

Step two: Ask for what you want. You may have to ask for funding. You may have to ask for cooperation from the employees. You may need an exemption from an environmental regulation. What ever it is, you have to ask for it to get it. Many projects are doomed from the start because managers assume their requests will not be heard or that they don't know the right way to ask.

Step three: Get a clear picture of the completed project in mind before starting. This goes hand in hand with knowing what you want to accomplish. It also helps you focus on how you plan to accomplish it. You must be able to see your desired result in your mind before you can begin a successful process improvement project.

Step four: Take action toward your desires. There are many famous saying like "the journey of a thousand miles begins with just one step" that are appropriate here. Fill in your own grandfather's sayings here. But the important part is to get started. The "right first time" philosophy does not always apply here. You may have to experiment a little to know exactly where you are going. Edison made lots of light bulbs that did not work before he hit in the correct combination. You have to be willing to take a little risk to get your project moving.

Step five: Be thankful for your projects success. You have to know that you will succeed and know that you are enjoying the process of getting there. So be thankful for each step in the process. Even so called mistakes that eventually lead you to the correct desired result are events to be thankful for.

Finally, in improving any process, you need to consider the people that are going to be involved. How will each person individually benefit from this improvement? All the people involved, owners who put up the money, customers who will use the product, employees that will operate the process and the engineers who will design the process all have to know what they will personally benefit from the success of this project.

So if you have any type process that you want to improve, I can put together a way to help you improve it. I don't believe in perfection. There is nothing that can't be done better if you put your creative mind to work on it.

Listed below are some various categories of ways I can help you improve your process or even you own personal life. It is all about the benefits.

If you were to take some time to search through my web site, you would soon learn about how I have used this same process improvement methodology in everything from building an automated batch distillation column in the early days to PLC's to modifying my own Jeep Cherokee to go places that it was never intended to go.

You would read about some of the strange places I have visited and adventures I have been on in Jeeps, sports cars and boats. I have learned something about communicating with people of various cultures from each one.

The same techniques that I use to motivate project team members also work in any manager employee relationship. In fact, they work for training your dog, improving your health and in relating to your spouse.

So next time you set out to improve a business process, make sure you effectively communicate the benefits of the project to all those that will be involved. You will be much more successful if you do.

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Source by Mike Strawbridge

Business Communication Skills

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Improving Business Communication skills is incredibly significant in case you desire to turn into a genuine professional. This review focuses on business communication styles and how to develop them.

Constituents of business communications skills:

If you happen to working inside an organization, you have got undoubtedly understood how significant corporation communication skills are. Organization communication skills play a quite critical role in helping employees communicate with one another in an efficient manner. In business communication there typically are a couple of major varieties of communication, internal and external. In internal communication, there is a transfer of knowledge among a couple of or far more entities among the businesses. On the other hand, in external communication, the knowledge transfer is carried out among the business employees and outside entities. Both these types of communication are significant to your smooth running of any business concern. Let us get know far more within the aspects of business interpersonal skills and organizational skills inside the workplace.

Public speaking:
As the name suggests, public speaking is a speech in front of many people, be it inside a smaller technique meeting or a big conference. This skill stands out as the most significant for executives at higher positions. You ought to develop your skills with relating to how you are heading to present the facts inside a structured manner.

Email and report writing skills:
Writing skills are quite essential for all employees in the organization, irrespective of the position. Writing emails, reports schedules are daily tasks carried out inside a business in its everyday running. After using written approaches of communication in business, remember to hold it short, formal and precise.

Negotiation skills:
Negotiation skills are commonly applied by those who are working in promoting and communication processes in the business. These skills are required during telecommunication, written communication or face to face communication. Negotiation approaches are also regarded as probably the most needed business trouble solving skills.

Follow up skills:
Several working professionals follow an incomplete process of communication. They transfer knowledge from their side, but do not make certain whether the receiver has got the response and understood what is necessary or not. Follow up of facts is what each executive has to perform for creating the communication cycle complete.

Telephone skills:
One more important aspect of business communication skills is how we sound over a telephone. Communication via telephone is extremely popular in today's business world and to pass over a message clearly, you have to develop beneficial telephone skills. These oral communication skills need to be improved in particular by those people working in the client support sector.

Voice tone and physique language:
During face to face workplace communication, you need to have a pleasant and humble tone. Do not speak in a toe that would give an authoritative and rude touch towards speech. Along with your tone, you need to also be in an excellent and confident posture.

Exercise business listening skills by giving others a chance to speak out and realize what they got to say.

These are several random concepts included in business communication skills. Owing towards the value of business communication skills, several business concern have kicked off to arrange for employee training sessions. Along with these approaches at the workplace, you also need to develop trust among employees for trustworthy and clear communication. When it comes to highly effective business communication, effective listening is the probably most vital essential. Remember that clear communication often leads to anticipated results.

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Source by Rasel Talukder