It’s a glorious time to be working in a business today. There are many apps and services available, computing devices have never been more powerful, and super-fast internet is quickly becoming available around the developed world.
It’s now easier than ever to work from home, the coffee shop, the office, or even the beach. It’s now easier than ever to work extremely long hours as well. There is now a lack of separation between work and personal lives that pushes employees to be available 24/7 and leads to burnout.
The actual problem is that most people struggle to manage their time between meetings, email, and long phone calls. What’s needed is a reorganization of how employees spend their time, collaborate with each other, and how businesses measure success. Most people put value on staying busy, but that’s working towards a solution that isn’t going to help them meet their goals. Time is the only thing that money can’t buy more of, so it’s critical to use every minute with maximum efficiency.
What Do Business Communication Problems Look Like in Your Office?
Meetings are the de facto way that most organizations communicate with each other. It doesn’t matter if you’re a remote team or an in-office team. In reality, meetings are incredibly time-consuming. If you consider the employee costs of 10+ people in a 1-hour meeting, it’s a costly process.
Meetings can often lack a clear plan, a real purpose, and end without any action items tracked for follow-up. Without any real purpose, meetings may not be productive. They’re keeping every participant from doing something else that might be more important and help the company drive their projects forward.
A lot of meetings happen regularly, so they lack any real point for happening. Because there isn’t a real point for them being held, they lack a clear focus, so conversations end up rambling on without accomplishing much. Most middle managers believe that part of their job is to report back on what their team is working on, but in reality, constant meetings that serve no prudent purpose are slowing their team down.
Meetings might seem like the best way to collaborate and move projects forward, but one has to ask: are meetings the best business communication solutions? Is there a better way to collaborate? Meetings aren’t the best way to communicate effectively in many situations. Only one person can share at a time, and it’s hard to keep everyone engaged during a long conversation.
Because meetings can drift off-topic, they can easily run into other meetings, so people have to leave before the first meeting has even concluded. Because of this, they end up missing the final moments of the meeting to discuss any action items or key responsibilities.
A key problem with most company meetings is the lack of documentation of what transpired during the meeting. If someone is not able to make the meeting, if action items aren’t documented, then others in the company won’t be in the loop of what was discussed.
The final aspect of meetings that most people aren’t clear on what was discussed or decided, so additional follow-up is often needed. As deadlines are not set with clear action items, more time will be wasted. A meeting that should have been an email will eventually lead to even more emails and follow-ups.
What are Business Communication Solutions?
When businesses take a step back and look at how they manage employee productivity, they’ll often find that many of the existing solutions and methods they employ are actually not that effective and aren’t conducive to helping them meet their goals.
By rethinking how you communicate as an organization, you’ll create an environment where employees are happier, spend less sifting through materials, and still get their work done. By avoiding wasteful meetings, you’ll spend time doing the things you’re supposed to be doing instead of merely talking about them.
Business communication solutions are designed to help facilitate collaboration between an organization. They’re designed to house communication, collaboration tools, file-sharing, and more. Some solutions try to eliminate email, while others streamline with other tools.
Some business communication solutions work well on all devices (mobile, tablet, web, etc.), while others are mainly designed to be used in a web browser. Regardless of your chosen solution, it’s important to find one that works for your business. Let’s look into what features your business will need when it comes to communicating solutions.
What Communication Solution Features Does Your Business Need?
Chat: easy asynchronous communication & file sharing
Business communication solutions require great collaboration solutions. Spike’s chat-like Conversational Email layout turns your everyday email account into a communication powerhouse. Spike enables conversations that would normally require a meeting to be done almost instantly over email.
By moving your meetings into a business communication solution, you’ll avoid trying to schedule entire team meetings but rather use asynchronous communication solutions to avoid wasting a lot of time spent in meetings. Since all of your communication will be digital, there will be an automatic archive of everything that was said and agreed upon by all parties involved.
If there is any question in the future on action items, deadlines, or responsibilities – a quick search will find the source of the item in question. Spike’s search also makes it a powerful tool for file sharing.
Spike’s chat-like interface works perfectly with people not on Spike yet as well. Clients and colleagues who aren’t yet using Spike will see the chats as a normal email. This feature makes Spike the best internal chat-tool, but also the best email client for external accounts.
Online Notes: for clear instructions & documentation
Spike includes collaborative online Notes that are synced to all your devices with the latest changes. Using Spike Notes instead of a meeting, your team will have a place to report their latest status updates, share the newest design drafts, and more. Spike Notes isn’t just for text, it can store files, images, and PDFs as well.
Because Spike is cross-platform, it doesn’t matter if your team is using Android, iOS, macOS, Windows, or even the web – everyone can use Spike Notes. Teams can even work on the same Note simultaneously without worrying about synchronization conflicts. Spike Notes does it all!
Instead of a weekly roundup, everyone can drop a note or voice message with what’s happening in their area and the entire team will gain an hour back in their week for more pressing matters. If anyone on the senior management team wants to see how a particular department is doing on a project, they’ll be able to view the Note on any device.
Groups: for instant communication with the organization
Spike Groups are one of the silver bullets for project management. By eliminating countless email threads and meetings, projects will be more organized and easier to manage. Spike Groups is to email what group messages are to texting. It’s a way to loop everyone on your team into an easy-to-follow thread that works as an email but feels like a group chat.
Spike Groups ditches all that useless data that comes along with standard email. Spike removes the repeating headers and signatures (say bye-bye to those cliche signatures with inspirational quotes from questionable sources), and gone is the inconvenient and ugly email formatting and unnecessary formalities. Everything is laid out in an easy-to-follow format, so discussions are focused only on the project.
Teams can quickly see what information has been shared and relate to the rest of the conversation by scrolling through messages (emails) like a group chat. Spike Groups lets you easily access ALL files, images, docs, etc., in the Group Chat’s information box in the side menu. What’s even better is that attachments no longer pile up and get lost in the thread history. Files, images, and more can be uploaded from your computer or directly from numerous cloud services such as Dropbox, Google Drive, and OneDrive.
Business Communication Solutions Summary
The status quo in business communications will only lead to more countless meetings, more follow-ups, more missed deadlines, and more frustration. Take a step back from all of that and look to move to a culture where meetings are the exception for project management instead of the default.
Spike is purpose-built to replace meetings, keep everyone in the loop on tasks and projects all the while eliminating employee burnout and giving people more time to disconnect from technology.
Spike combines all of your tools into a single digital workspace so it becomes the best business communication solution for your team.
By combining email, chat, video calls, audio calls, voice messages, collaborative Notes, Tasks/To-Dos into a single (but powerful) workspace, your team will avoid meetings, meet project deadlines, and still enjoy less stress and more free time.
Work is hard enough with the right tools. Without the right tools, it can be nearly impossible. Download Spike today to get your team started.