Team Communication Strategy for Startups: 4 Critical Elements You Need

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The more money you raise, people you hire, and employees you have, the more important communication becomes.

If you’re a startup, communication is your lifeline.

Without it, you’re dead in the water.

One of the greatest challenges startups face is having a solid inter-team communication strategy. The team is small, and everyone has a lot on their plate, so they must stay organized and productive.

While email is an essential tool for communication, it’s not always the most efficient one. So how do you set up your team to ensure everyone’s on the same page without spending hours sorting through inboxes?

Spoiler alert: this isn’t just sign up for Slack and get some channels going. No, this is much more fundamental than that.

Here are four elements of a solid team communication strategy:

Use Folders and Naming Conventions to Keep Files Organized

It sounds simple, but this is where many companies need more time to organize documents. 

Think about it: have you ever received an email with an attachment that doesn’t have a name? Or worse yet, an attachment that has no name at all? It happens more often than you think!

It’s important that every file that goes out of your office has an appropriate name and is placed in the correct folder — whether it be shared among all employees or just sent between two people. 

If this sounds like too much work, consider using tools like Dropbox Paper or Google Drive (or both!). 

These two apps allow you to create folders right within their interface and add collaborators who can access them from anywhere.

Set Clearly Defined Goals for Each Team Member

To help your project teams meet their goals, set clear objectives for each team and evaluate its work regularly.

Avoid setting nebulous goals. Instead, set tangible and measurable objectives. 

For instance, instead of assigning a team to create and implement a marketing strategy, you might ask the group to develop and execute three digital marketing campaigns.

You should:

  • Set deadlines for individual tasks or for each phase of a longer project.
  • Create a brief document that team members can sign when they receive it. 
  • Make sure everyone understands the requirements from the beginning of your work together.

Update Your Status to Let People Know Whether You're Available

Don’t let co-workers think you’re ignoring them. 

Updating your status frequently is a good way of letting others know:

  • When you’re available for collaboration. 
  • When you want to work without interruptions.
  • When you’re taking lunch or other breaks. 

Consider the “Do Not Disturb” option on a team collaborating tool as an online equivalent of closing your office door.

In addition to helping you avoid those pesky, unplanned phone calls, the “Do Not Disturb” feature also enables you to set up a vacation responder that will go out when you’re away from the office. 

We can all agree that fully disconnecting on vacation, when possible, is critical to our health and well-being. More companies realize this fact every day. 

Organizations are working to give their employees more time off—for various reasons based on the physical body’s need for rest and mental clarity.

Why You Should Practice Effective Communication

Startups thrive on collaboration, so you must communicate in a way that makes people in your team feel comfortable.

  • Be direct with your intentions and expectations.
  • Be considerate of others’ time and energy levels when scheduling meetings or conference calls.
  • Make sure there’s an open line of communication between all levels in your organization
  • Express your opinions positively—no one wants to hear other people complain.
  • Emphasize any positive outcomes from your suggestions and ideas, even if they don’t pan out.

Book a call with us to allow us to help sort that out so that growth is easy. When you’re rapidly growing, everyone needs to be able to communicate effectively to sustain and manage growth.

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