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January 11, 2011 Internal communication consultants forecast for 2011

simply communicate logoThis forecast originally appeared on To read the original, including all of its forecasts for the new year, click here.

David Grossman, Founder and CEO, The Grossman Group:

“We're already seeing a greater realization and need to train leaders on communication skills, as well as to hold them accountable for communicating more effectively.  The global research we do with our clients, along with the internal research I see regularly, demonstrates significant gaps in communication, especially when it comes to two-way communication.  Training leaders can have a significant impact on improving those scores and driving further engagement.
Since engagement is fluid - it's a gift that can readily be given and easily taken away - I predict we're going to see more companies with regular polling of their staffs regarding engagement.  The result will be a more accurate temperature check and sense of engagement, which will allow leaders and communicators to adapt their communication strategies more regularly.
I sense we're going to see some backlash by the use and abuse of technology to support communication on the inside.  Top of the list is email.  E-nough already, I say, when it comes to poor use of the vehicle.  When I mention my wish to stop ‘reply-all’ when I speak to large audiences, I often get applause.  How full can our inboxes get before we start to change our behaviors, and hold others accountable for their poor use of email?  My sense is 2011 will be more about getting smarter about how to use technology to get work done, and I hope more people will pick up the phone and share feedback with others when email was used inappropriately.”
What won’t change? Grossman says:

“Leaders will continue to hide behind technology when dealing with tough issues.  Our ego and desire to stay away from conflict will mean we continue at times to choose a method of communicating that feels better, but won't be as successful, and in the end, will waste valuable time. It might feel good to send off an angry email, but conflict on email escalates faster and lasts longer, research shows.”


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