25 January 2024

Communicating in the Modern Workplace

Talent Development

Alex Cabon: Leader at Learnlight by day; coach and inspirational speaker by night, Alex has delivered two TED talks around education and happiness. With an engineering background, he’s fluent in four languages. He’s with us to discuss the launch of our latest eBook.

An Introduction…

Did you know that, in addition to digital skills, the World Economic Forum estimates six in ten workers will require communication skills training by 2027? In fact, 92% of talent professionals say that such skills matter just as much, if not more, than the traditional ‘hard’ skills today.

You could ask me! With a background in physics and engineering, I’ve gone on to do all sorts of coaching certifications and public speaking activities to excel at my job.

We recently launched a new eBook linked to the topic of communication and technology, and how they both come together in the workplace. To explore it further, I wanted to spend some time with you, sharing my thoughts. Read on to find out more.

Why is Communication Skills Training Important?

Communication is a foundational part of business growth, but more often than not it’s not given the attention it deserves. Ineffective communication is costing businesses $12,506 per employee, per year. The shift to remote work is bringing about further challenges.

According to Wakefield Research we’re experiencing:

  • A lack of access to company leadership (47%)
  • A less connected office culture (43%)
  • An over reliance on others to communicate (52%).

On top of this, technologies like AI are changing how we communicate. Relationships are becoming more transactional, with people less present and in the moment.

We need to address this by offering the right training. Well-connected teams are up to 25% more productive. There are a vast array of benefits stemming from achieving communicative mastery at work. We explore these further in our new eBook.

What Communication Skills Are Important?

I have done various TED talks throughout my career, and, I tell you, preparing for them is in itself an art. It looks natural on stage, but a lot of prep work happens behind the scenes.

I try and use a combination of communication skills to craft engaging public speeches, and it’s no different in our day-to-day in the workplace, especially as senior leaders.

If I were to sum them up, they would rest on three pillars which are what we, at Learnlight, lean on to build our workplace training programs. These are shown to increase productivity by as much as five times, and improve leadership and team management in many ways:

  • Language skills ensuring workplace communication in a company’s official language or other languages is possible between teams: reading, writing and speaking.
  • Intercultural skills helping teams understand their cultural differences when placing meaning and value to words and gestures, building awareness of each other.
  • Interpersonal skills helping us use body language and emotional intelligence to deliver our message in the most engaging, reassuring and empathetic way possible.

Inspired by Brené Brown’s The Power of Vulnerability, I believe in using these three pillars of communication to help us be as authentic (vulnerable) as possible. For example, using verbs that express our emotions and feelings, and striving for being detailed and specific through verbal and body language. Ultimately, avoiding hiding behind walls.

Cultural Intelligence to Unlock the Global Puzzle

I cannot emphasise enough how much Cultural Intelligence (CI) goes hand in hand with knowing how best to communicate in global business. We want long-lasting relationships and without cultural know-how, relationships and understanding can fall apart. We capture this in our eBook through a case study around an organization launching new company values.

It’s for this reason, global employees should acquire as much cultural understanding as they can, and become curious and eager to learn and discover. As part of Learnlight’s intercultural offerings, we provide an intercultural assessment where you can compare your cultural best-practices with those from other cultures. It’s a great starting point for reflection.

Intercultural skills take time, practice, repetition and patience, as well as ongoing reflection and correction to build. Learning a new language is a great starting point as it already unlocks different cognitive skills and understanding. This is also why all three communication pillars above are so inextricably linked, reinforcing one another and driving the best results.

At Learnlight, we’re excited to have recently launched an enhanced version of our intercultural offerings to support businesses on this journey. We’re also working on a research project to gather learnings from worldwide employees, around their best practices working with different countries, gained from past experiences. If you want to take part, there’s still time – complete it here today. The resulting trends will be published in future blog posts.

How Else Can Learnlight and this eBook Help You?

At Learnlight we believe in people-powered, technology-enabled, science-backed corporate training solutions to build communicative mastery. This means, we believe in having world-class trainers at the forefront, whilst technology drives the experience.

We also believe in backing up the whole process with science, so that we’re empowering learners to make an impact. We know you care about productivity and results, which is why our training is also corporate-specific. We also help you, as a manager, track results and progress on our platform. For us it’s all about ‘learning on the job’.

Our new eBook looks at why and how senior business leaders can adopt communication skills training effectively using flexible learning platforms like ours. I cannot encourage you enough to download a copy today, if you’ve enjoyed this post.

Thank you for reading me!

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