Corporate communication refers to the communication between corporations, as well as the communication within corporations. This can refer to emails, to phone calls, to meetings, to notes and much more. In this post, we will look at why corporate communication is so important and how it is different from other forms of communication.
In business, we now work with countless different people around the world. The world is smaller than it ever has been before thanks to technology and this allows business to be conducted on a truly global scale.
But in order to work with other organizations, whether that means clients, partners or investors, you need to be able to communicate with them in order to collaborate and in order to sell. Communication in this context is handled very differently from the way that you might communicate with a friend or relative and this is what we mean when we say ‘corporate communication’.
Communication is also crucial within an organization though. Your staff will constantly be in communication with one another as they send emails, make calls or send messages to help make plans and arrangements. If communication breaks down, this can lead to serious errors that could cost your business thousands. This is what we mean by the term ‘corporate communication’.
Why Communication is So Important in Business
In business, there are countless highly important skills that we need to develop in order to ensure that our companies thrive and that we personally are a success. These include things like forward planning, organization, teamwork, leadership and all the other things that you will often see on a job listing or in someone's personal statement. However, one of the very most important things of all if you want to excel in the cutthroat world of business is to develop amazing written communication skills – after all personal statements and job descriptions would hardly exist if it wasn't for written communication.
Uses of Written Communication in Business
There are countless different uses of written communication when it comes to business. Of course, we write as a form of communication more today than ever before thanks to the ubiquity of the web – we use it to communicate with other businesses, with our staff and colleagues, with our clients and more, and in every case it's highly important that our communications be accurate and easy to understand to ensure that unnecessary mistakes are not made, and even more importantly to ensure that we don't end up damaging our reputation.
On top of all this, written communication is also highly important for a range of creative endeavours in business – from designing the content on websites, to other copywriting duties, to coming up with marketing campaigns, to writing leaflets and instructions, to crafting press releases. We will seek to impress stock holders with our annual reports, we will attempt to summarise what our business does when we come to sell it and generally whether or not our writing shines and reflects well on our company will affect whether our business excels or flounders.
Some Quick Tips to Make Your Writing Pop
So how do you make sure you write well in business? Well first of all you need to make sure that your writing is concise and to the point. In the world of business time really is money and everyone you communicate with is likely to be in a rush the majority of the time. In other words, then it's important to get to the point fast and to do so with no unnecessary vocabulary and no unusually structured sentences. The main objective of language in any capacity, is to make sure that you get to the point quickly and succinctly and to convey the meaning that you set out to convey. The value of communication lies in the meaning.
While you don't want to be unnecessarily verbose however, what you can benefit from is using the best possible vocabulary. People associate good vocabulary with high intelligence and that means that you can use it to impress potential clients or employers and this way make yourself seem more capable and more of a valuable asset. Of course, using the wrong words in the wrong situations, or making grammatical errors can have the precise opposite effect so make sure to check, check and check again.
At the same time though that doesn't mean that your writing needs to be 'dry'. This is a mistake that many people will make when writing for businesses and will mistake 'professional' for 'boring'. You still need to engage your audience and if you can show a little bit of personality then you will be more likely to be remembered and more likely to charm your audience into wanting to hire your services. To accomplish this then, you should aim to write as you might speak – try to listen to the monologue in your mind and to write this down exactly how it comes out as you hear it. You can tweak it later, but if you use this approach then you should find your writing is naturally easy to read and follow.
To help improve your abilities in all these areas it is very important to practice reading and the more you do this the better you will become at writing naturally flowing text quickly and easily.
Another term to be familiar with in business though is something called communication overhead. Communication overhead refers to amount of time that is spent communicating. You should know the old adage that in business, time is money. Therefore, the more time you spend communicating, the more money you are wasting.
Let’s imagine you take on a new client. They want you to design just one web page for their site that will only cost them about $50. But that same client wants to have a meeting first. And they talk to you for an hour. Now you are being paid $50 not only to design the site, but also to engage in that meeting. This could half your profits, seeing as you won’t be able to work for other clients during that time.
Likewise, companies that engage in unnecessary meetings whenever possible are also costing themselves money. They are spending cash by paying their staff for those hours and getting nothing back. This is why it’s so important not to ‘play at business’ but to quickly and efficiently get down to work. And this is why good corporate communication is clear and concise!
Some tips to help you cut down on communication overhead:
- Consider asking your staff to stand during meetings. When people aren’t comfy, they tend to speak a lot quicker (though avoid making your staff too uncomfortable as that’s tantamount to torture)
- Preface any phone call answered with the words ‘I’ve only got a few minutes but how can I help’
- Try to avoid the temptation to engage in needless small-talk
- That said, recognize that some chat is actually worthwhile for teambuilding and morale. This is a blurry line and a judgement call you will have to make.
- If clients want to have long discussions or meetings, you will need to charge them for their time.