Communication is key to the success of any endeavour that involves more than one person. Clear and transparent communication becomes even more important in the face of a challenge or crisis, such as the one we are going through right now. Managers must communicate effectively and empathetically with the workforce when a crisis that impacts everyone strikes.
Focus on facts
It is easy for misinformation to spread during uncertain times, especially when emotions are running high. Therefore, it is very important to focus on facts rather than opinions and assumptions. Be sure to have all your information verified and up to date.
People may not be able to grasp the nuances of your message when they are disturbed or upset. So, ensure that your communication is crystal clear and that there is no room for ambiguity. Choose your words carefully and avoid lengthy sentences and phrases.
Before you share information with your colleagues, make sure it is relevant to them. Understand that people you communicate regularly with will greatly appreciate messages that are of concern to them at the moment. This will also help avoid confusion and clutter.
Be understanding and empathetic
During a crisis, you should let people know that you care and therefore you should also be a good listener. You may not be able to change things, but you sure can express knowledge of their hardships and compassion for their struggles. Communicating that you understand what they are going through is important as it will go a long way in reinforcing trust and the relations with your colleagues.