Engaged organizations are responsive organizations. And responsive organizations are committed to communication. Which means constantly scanning and staying aware of where there might be a clog in the communication pipeline.
Clogged pipelines don’t always begin with a huge landmark episodic event. The buildup accumulates over time. The irritating comment that isn’t addressed. The person who’s left out of the loop. The isolated decision made at the top that feels small but has an increasing impact as it ripples throughout the organization.
But the thing about clogs, is that they’re easy to look past until they become visible. Palpable. Until the buildup is the size of a blockage, it can feel way more efficient (energetically, financially, time-management wise etc.) to ignore it.
The trouble with this approach is that as the buildup occurs, there’s invisible damage being done that simply removing the buildup won’t heal. Yes, there are external repairs that are essential. But the truth is that sustainable shifts that promote growth and boost morale don’t happen in a single day.
In the same way that buildup grows over time, maintaining open pipelines happens one moment, one interaction at a time.
One good morning. One open office door. One listening ear. One shared meal. One invitation extended. One question asked with the intention of making sure our colleagues know they’re heard. One decision to stop by that person’s desk to check in and see how they’re doing. One decision to pause and think for a moment about the impact of our words before we speak them. One more chair pulled into the circle. One choice to read that book or listen to that podcast so you can learn more about an unfamiliar perspective and connect with unfamiliar experiences.
One intentional moment at a time. That’s how effective communication becomes a real possibility.