In HardTalk we believe that companies with a culture of constant candour are the most successful. That means encouraging open communication. But as a manager or organisation, don’t fall into the trap of over-communication.

Team communication is essential in every workplace, be it a hospital, flight deck, military unit, or nuclear plant. But when it comes to effective communication, quality beats quantity, according to research from a team at Rice University.

In a recently published scientific analysis, the scientists led by graduate student Shannon Marlow found that large amounts of back-and-forth communication weren’t always as productive for teams as deliberate, high-quality communication. Information can overload team members if the frequency is too great, or the most important details could get lost in the sheer volume of information, the scientists suggest.

The research team drew its findings from a review of 150 studies involving 9,702 organizational teams. One of the biggest findings was that “communication quality had a significantly stronger relationship with performance than communication frequency,” says Marlow.

The findings challenge the assumption that constant and abundant communication is critical to team success according to Eduardo Salas, professor of Psychology at Rice University and co-author on the paper. “Effective teams are quiet,” he says. “Effective teams share unique information. Effective teams engage in a pattern of information exchange that is accurate, precise, timely.”

Check out the full article in the Association for Psychological Science here: https://www.psychologicalscience.org/news/minds-business/quality-beats-quantity-in-team-communications.html

 

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