Almost everyone has worked in teams at some point in their lives. Within those teams, communication is crucial between all members, regardless of what role each person plays. Whether it is between two teammates on a sports team or two managers in a corporate office, communication is vital to success.
Teammates must develop trust, since it is not automatic. Accordingly, members must communicate more openly than they normally would in everyday life. There must be honesty on all ends of the team, since withholding the truth could damage the team's integrity. Team members should always share information and feelings between each other. This allows for total trust between the team members.
Importance of Communication
Research has found that three or more people working together on a project are much more effective than a single person spending all of his time doing the same thing. However, without communication, the three-plus team members can be as useless as if the project went untouched.
Benefits of Communication
Teams that communicate complete projects in a quicker and more efficient amount of time than others. They also are more accurate in their work than others. Effective communication also allows team members to understand their roles and the roles of everyone else on the team. It also gives room for understanding among the team members for what needs to be done.
Consequences of Lack of Communication
Teams that fail to communicate effectively wind up wasting time and energy doing busy work and other work that is not required because of a lack of understanding of what needs to be done. These team members also misunderstand each other and their personalities. This often leads to conflict within the group and a lack of trust between group members. Team members in groups that fail to communicate effectively wind up not understanding what makes themselves more efficient, because they fail to get feedback from everyone else in the group, and there is no one else that they can compare their work to.
Recipe for Successful Communication
Research shows that good communication, mixed with strong organizational support, competence among the group leaders and clear group objectives can lead to the highest level of success in teams. Among those factors, good communication has shown to be the most important for success.