ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

How to Improve Communication Skills in the Workplace

Updated on October 28, 2013

Improving communication skills in the workplace is important since most of us spend the greatest amount of time there outside of home. It is also imperative that work morale, a derivative of wholesome communication, is high. It greatly contributes to job satisfaction and often sets the tone for things happening away from work.

Communication is essential in human interaction and work is crucial to societal welfare. We all must work and thus interact; so productive and enjoyable work depends on our communication ability.

Now not every workplace has a breakdown in communications and angry, negative people at each other’s throats. Problematic interpersonal communications is not the focus of this article. Instead, let me explain what the approach is.

What is Communications?

Communication is something we all can do easily with a little help; but it takes practice. The kind of communication skill explained here is not speech tactics but protocols. Understand “communication” to mean a mutual participation of persons. Yet this doesn’t always happen freely in work settings due to unnoticed and unintended barriers even though everybody is talking with one another. It will often supply the answer to what is missing on the job, namely interpersonal vitality and confidence in the company and fellow workers. These bolster morale. Important in itself, it is more crucial when we understand that morale—how workers feel about their work—affects the product or service.

This article will highlight four barriers and offer solutions to make communication happen quicker. Two relational barriers and two functional barriers will be discussed. It is important to stress that these barriers may exist by omission, for things not being done.


Does your workplace enjoy high morale?

See results

Think About It:

If people can communicate so easily to express their criticisms and negativity, why can't they do it to better their relations? It would make a big difference in the work environment and training departments should facilitate this change.


Which of the barriers do you need more help with as a manager or worker?

See results

Communication Barriers in the Workplace

Relational Barrier No. 1: Depreciation

Work can quickly become a farm where people are herded in and out like animals, used only for what they can provide and then axed in the end. Morale plunges when fellow workers are undervalued and viewed as expendable—not just for their work but also their person: personality matters.

Communication Skill Solution: View every worker as a necessity. It is the first rule of solidarity and moves people beyond foibles and faults.

Create a goal of becoming gracious. Giving grace is the control to embrace and support others despite their misgivings and with the expectation of personal growth—and who doesn’t need this amidst duties and deadlines?

See the good in others and nurse it. Help others become better persons for their work. One could work better but still be a difficult personality or he could grow relationally and enrich his work and work environment.

Relational Barrier No. 2: Exclusivity

No one likes to feel left out. But being left out may occur when groups form and some are not invited to participate. This may be unintentional but, worse, a clique may have formed, intentionally or not.

Cliques oppose morale because the focus is the group and not the workplace as a cohesive unit. Also, management can exclude workers—the “us versus them” or “master-slave” mentality where certain ones are important and information is top secret.

Communication Skill Solution: Be transparent.

Cliques might never form if people learn more about those around them. It is simple advice but learn to talk to people and ask them what you want to know. (Tip: They will probably tell you.) Conversely, be open with information that isn’t private. If it’s too sensitive or personal, it doesn’t need to be shared; but, if it’s no secret, why hide it?

The same goes for management: Give workers as much information as possible about their workplace and company decisions. Again, what is private or still developing can remain off-limits. But workers are part of the team and deserve to know upfront. Transparency demonstrates trust. There should never be a chasm between workers and leadership.

Functional Barrier No. 1: Neglect

Work can stagnate because workers don’t know how to proceed. It is rare that any type of work comes without instructions. So a failure to guide workers in their work, whether you are the manager or a co-worker, will quickly thwart productivity.

Communication Skill Solution: Explain protocol and be objective.

Protocol is the way something is regulated, and there is always a protocol in work situations. It is a pillar of organization and should be clearly explained. Objectivity is important because it is the point about what is to be done, not only the overall purpose but the purpose in each step taken. Protocol and objectivity gets work done efficiently.

Functional Barrier No. 2: Pedanticism

To be pedantic means to be lecturing or bookish. Some people tend to be academic or high-flown in their approach to explaining things, but this can impede another’s learning. Tasks are sometimes demanding to perform and to learn and may need trainers that can also be translators.

Communication Skill Solution: Turn large concepts into smaller, even familiar ideas.

Work can be grasped when difficult concepts are put in the language a person speaks. Now the trainer may have no clue about a person’s background: their role is to simplify, sequence, and define—and diligence here eventually gets the point across. But a trainee, having grasped the concept, will often learn the principle because it correlates with a past experience, something triggered by the trainer’s explanations.

It is also important to simplify the language used. If technical language can be avoided, do so. Finally, explain to workers how their work matters on the task. They have ownership in the process.


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment
    • profile image


      2 years ago

      It was on my quiz too and I the answers do not reflect anything I could find.

    • profile image


      2 years ago

      This site is on my quiz as a bad source for lack of something

    • ithabise profile imageAUTHOR

      Michael S 

      7 years ago from Danville, VA

      Thanks, hubcloud. The workplace should never endure poor communication skill. It won't for long.

    • hubcloud profile image


      7 years ago from India

      Great hub. Communication is key to improve team productivity. Thanks for sharing info.


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
    ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)