HomeContact UsOur WritersMedia KitAdvertisersWhite PapersArchives
Main Menu
Issue Archive
Managers Forum
Help Wanted
Used Equipment
Product Directory
Issue Archive Print E-mail


Communication - the Answer to the Problem?
by Rod Johnson

It was early November and I was traveling back from northern Illinois where I had spent time helping with corn harvest. While traveling down the road with the radio on, the song “The Things We Do for Love” by the group 10 CC came over the airwaves. It was a song I had heard numerous times in my youth. The lyrics were memorable, although I had totally forgotten this prophetic phrase, “Communication is the problem to the answer.”

It instantly reminded me of why good communication in our personal and professional lives is so important. Effective communication is an integral component of the answer to many problems. But how should we do it? Should we assume an authoritative approach? A compassionate approach? Or, should we simply send a memo? The communication channel we select is more important than one might think. After all, effort is not the issue – effectiveness is.

I don’t care which study you access; they all reach the same basic conclusion. Communication effectiveness is declining – and rapidly. This statement is true for marketing professionals, sales personnel, the leadership team, the human resource group and so on. What we once had, we are quickly losing. Without an effective communication process, organizations become shells unto themselves, with no soul. This ultimately influences our communication patterns, whether good or bad.

Why Should We Be Concerned?

The simple answer is money. Organizations that are effective communicators are more productive, energetic and positive toward the future. Employees take fewer sick days and morale is higher. Everyone knows their job, their role in the organization and where the organization is going. This begins to add up when determining the price of a stock or the valuation of a company.

Let’s assume for a second our organization has a problem. How can communication make a significant change in the organization’s future?

It is really quite simple. How an organization communicates internally and externally is its reality. Until we change the organization’s communication patterns, we have changed nothing. “Change Management” initiatives fall short because the organization’s communication pattern did not change accordingly. “Knowledge Management” programs fail because the message of their importance did not become ingrained and adopted. Corporate reorganizations are unsuccessful because they reinforce the negative aspects rather than empowering the positive.

Communication is not only the problem to the answer. It is also the paradigm hindering your access to opportunities and hastening the onset of your challenges.

Take the first step by becoming a better communicator. You will find it infectious.

Back to Articles