As the leader of a business, it’s not always easy to communicate effectively with other departments outside of your specialty. With so many different types of lingo and acronyms used within various industries and departments, one person can’t realistically keep up with all of them, and this is especially apparent within the IT department. As an entrepreneur, you can completely understand almost anything related to business and sales. However, when speaking with other departments, it’s important to realize that they may firstly not completely understand, and secondly may not be interested at all.
So allow us to help you understand more about communicating effectively with your It department, as well as why it’s important to do so.
Understanding that The Digital Realm is an IT Expert’s Specialty
While you may be the master of sales and service within your business, it’s important to respect the knowledge of those whom you have hired to do what you can’t or don’t have time to. So before you start giving commands based on what you think you know, as The Huffington Post agrees, first try to learn from your IT department, as IT is their specialty and in all honesty they are likely a lot better at it than you are. So rather than demanding actions before you understand the real problem, try presenting the problem to your experts to discover what they think about it first.
Even if you have studied in the field of IT before starting your business, as a business owner you don’t, or perhaps can’t even find the time to, live and breathe IT. Comparatively, many IT experts spend not only their working time but also their free time in digital realms, affording them far more experience and knowledge in the matter. This, however, doesn’t mean that you don’t get the final say in what actions get to be taken, so take back command after hearing their opinions to enforce and encourage action where necessary. Just remember that you have hired them for a good reason, so trust in their capabilities to solve the problem at hand or achieve what you believe will increase productivity, profits, or both.
Learning the Language – Communicating Across Departments
Another way to ensure that you can maintain control and incite action within other departments, as shared by The Muse, is to spend some time learning their language, what they typically do on a daily basis and why they do it. Similar to how learning other languages will always impress foreigners in their home countries, learning their lingo, acronyms and other nuances will show that you are willing to go out of your way to understand them better. And while you benefit from gaining extra respect from them for doing so – which will improve your ability to take command of meetings and discussions – it will also help you gain a better understanding of the department in general.
This can also help for when you need to hold a live video conference for IT meetings, especially for problems that are time-sensitive, as you may not have the time to waste asking questions in order to better understand the situation. Instead, you will be able to communicate to them in their unique language to get effective results in a timely manner – without running into trivial problems.
Explaining the Value of Each Role within your Organization
Oftentimes, barriers between departments are created by a misunderstanding of the value of each role within the company. With that in mind, it’s always a great idea – if you are struggling to communicate clearly with an individual or department – to explain precisely why each part of the complex system is necessary. From your own position as company owner to cleaning staff who ensure a safe, comfortable environment, sometimes employees simply need to be enlightened as to why each individual is there, as well as what value they add to the company. Even by simply explaining their own role and how it adds value to the end result, you can often encourage an employee to strive to be their best.
So next time you are having trouble commanding the conversation and enjoying the results you want from your IT department, consider the fact that they may simply not completely understand how each part adds up to make the business run smoothly and effectively.
Whether you run a massive company responsible for thousands of employees or a small business with only a handful, it’s not always easy to maintain control when dealing with specialties outside of your own. As such, remember these pieces of advice and, before you simply demand that your employees adhere to your every whim, take the time to understand them more, understand the unique language they speak, and ultimately form more personal bonds. Employees who understand their value within a company are far more likely to strive towards that company’s success and goals.