Big Company = Full House

On how to make sure the message is getting through.

Working in a company is like living in a full house with many family members.

What!?! There is a new version of XYZ coming out to the market? Why didn’t you tell us in Sales?  It could have been such a great message the last time I met with my customer!”

or

“So, see you on Saturday!” – says your friend.

“ On Saturday? Why?” you ask, your eyes wide open.

“Didn’t your husband (wife, son or daughter) tell you we are having dinner together next Saturday?” 

Despite all of the channels of communication available, effective communication is an issue at home and at work. This is especially true of marketing and sales departments. They are often working on the same task but synergies are not effectively happening. Just as more effective personal communications can happen at the dinner table, companies should break down the wall between the marketing and sales department and help them communicate together at the same “table”.  Here are some ideas to help improve internal communications:

  1. Use meetings carefully. Try to limit meeting times to 20 minutes. Have a clear agenda , and expect people to come prepared. Convey your messages in less time. Tell your audience what is relevant. If they want to know more, there can always be reference to further information in the form of links to websites or intranet sites.
  2. Make phone calls. Avoid ping-pong emails, where the thread goes on and on. After three messages, it may be better to call. You may get what you need directly instead of exchanging unnecessary emails.
  3. Intranet. An intranet can be a channel to let sales and marketing people know what’s going on. By delivering valuable and relevant information, you will make things easier for your employees and help them work more effectively.
  4. Email. Avoid copying too many people. If the information you communicate is not relevant to them, the next time around, they might not read your email.
  5. Be concise.  Just tell people what is really relevant for them in a short, simple message. This is effective communication.
  6. Encourage people to spend some time in “the other department’. This is a great way to learn what colleagues are doing.

As you think about improving communication at work or home, start by asking yourself, am I communicating effectively? Do my sales and marketing departments benefit from synergies?  A communication audit can give you many answers.

Other related links:

http://blog.hubspot.com/blog/tabid/6307/bid/6577/6-Sales-and-Marketing-Communication-Tips-to-Build-Smarketing.aspx

http://hbr.org/web/special-collections/insight/marketing-that-works/end-the-war-between-sales-and-marketing

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