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Reasons asynchronous workplace communication has quickly overcome business challenges

Updated: Dec 10, 2022

86% of employees and executives in the workplace have stated that ineffective collaboration and communication have been one of the biggest factors of workplace failures. The cost of poor communication is real and can cause serious repercussions for a business.

According to communication expert Debra Hamilton, the price of miscommunication can cost a company of 100 employees (or less) $420,000 per year.

According to another research, 28% of employees point to poor communication as the reason for delayed deadlines. Not just according to employees, corporate executives and educators also believe ineffective communication is the underlying reason for workplace failures.

A study by the Economist Intelligence Unit further illustrates how poor workplace communication can hurt the success of a workplace — it may result in:

  • Failure to complete projects (44%),

  • Low employee morale — (31%),

  • Missed performance goals — (25%) and;

  • Lost sales — (18%).

However, teams who communicate effectively are able to increase their productivity by as much as 25%.

Proper communication within a business brings several benefits to the said business. Studies, reports, and research show effective team communication positively affect employees in terms of:

  • Productivity,

  • Engagement,

  • Retention, and

  • Trust.

The best solution to poor communication seems to be learning how to identify and overcome the most common communication barriers in the workplace.

COVID-19 Changed the Way of Workplace Communication

The Covid-19 pandemic has created a significant impact on workplace communication. As health concerns rose, the number of people working from home skyrocketed. In addition, turning to digital means have become essential in facilitating remote team communication and collaboration.

At first, communication was the main concern for remote workers who were used to interacting with their teams in person. Yet, the importance and severity of this challenge seemed to decrease, even compared to pre-Covid times. People seem to be getting better at handling this challenge.

Asynchronous communication is simply the best way to get the work done. Working at your own pace means that you can work freely without spending the whole day being stuck in meetings.

This way of communication has proven to be effective. When asked about the potential of asynchronous communication policies in the future, more than half of those joining the survey (52%) said yes. As such, it’s evident that employees are more productive when working from home. In numbers, employees who work from home tend to:

  • Procrastinate 10 minutes less,

  • Work 1.4 days per month more, and

  • Be 47% more productive.

Interestingly, there has been an increase in the number of people working remotely due to COVID-19. Moreover, company leaders are starting to entertain the thought of making remote work the new normal after the pandemic:

  • 82% of them will allow their employees to work remotely at least part-time, and

  • 47% allow their employees to work remotely full-time.

There’s a positive sentiment towards remote work, with 90% of employees recommending the remote work experience to a fellow peer.

Asynchronous Workplace Communication Helps Both Managers and Employees in Feedback

Workplace communication preferences depend on whether you are a manager or a regular employee. However, the expectations of managers and employees do align, when it comes to what they want to gain from communication in the workplace.

One survey discovered that 69% of managers feel uncomfortable communicating with employees face-to-face. This is partly because 37% of managers feel uncomfortable giving direct feedback in certain business situations, especially if it is negative.

However, employees themselves believe that feedback is a crucial prerequisite for success. Interestingly, employees prefer corrective feedback to praise or recognition by a 14% difference — with a 57% to 43% ratio. Additionally, if the corrective feedback is delivered appropriately, a whopping 92% of respondents believe even negative feedback is an effective way to improve performance.

Communicating feedback is not just a factor in improving work performance, but also in engagement. Having high engagement also helps companies save money.

Another point people have strong feelings about in business communication is active listening. Namely, 41% of the employees do not feel valued at work. People who feel heard by co-workers and superiors report feeling 4.6 times more likely to feel empowered to perform their best work.

This is an opportunity for employers, given the fact that 90% of employees say recognition motivates them to work harder. 60% of respondents prefer employee rewards and recognition to improve job performance.

The key to ending this Great Resignation (or Great Attrition) lies in communication. Employees don't want transactions, they want interaction. Specifically, the top three reasons for quitting cited by the employees were the following:

  • They didn’t feel valued by their companies (54%),

  • They didn’t feel valued by their managers (52%), and

  • They didn’t feel a sense of belonging at work (51%).

Communication is not just about telling people what needs to be done, it’s also about listening to what they have to say, understanding their concerns and addressing those concerns if necessary.