As millennials have reshaped the workforce, everyday conversations between colleagues have turned digital.
Millennials were raised alongside the growth of smartphones and internet, so it’s no surprise that this generation characterizes the digital age and integrates this modern style of communication into their work. Platforms like Slack, for instance, offer fast and easy ways to communicate through both messaging and video chat — anytime, anywhere. There are numerous benefits of communicating through digital platforms, as long as they’re used the right way.
Chat anytime, anywhere, even on the go. One of the main advantages of digital communication platforms is the ability to connect at any time from wherever you are. Many digital platforms even have mobile applications you can download to your smartphone. This gives you the freedom to send and receive messages even when you’re on the go. If urgent matters come up when you’re on your lunch break or away from the office for the weekend, a notification on your phone can give you a heads up and allow you to respond quickly.
But of course, with this digital freedom comes the responsibility to use it wisely. The internet is constantly at our fingertips, so it can be hard to disconnect from work. It’s important to carve time out for yourself away from work and disengage from the office – a short cleanse from your weekday duties. In the end, you’ll be more effective at your job and build a stronger work-life balance.
Keep Your Team Up to Speed. Many digital platforms let you customize channels and boards to keep your team members on the same page. You can create public or private channels, depending on the subject matter, and you can host different channels that track various projects. Think of your channels like an archive or work diary that are at your fingertips for easy reference. Through the dozens and dozens of emails we get each day, it’s no surprise that projects can get lost in the clutter. By having distinct channels for different projects, it’s easier to track them. Plus, you can share files with your team to keep everyone up to date on what you’re working on.
One thing to remember, though, is the difference between communicating with your internal team and external clients. The environment of digital communication allows for more relaxed conversations and even some light-hearted emoji using. While this can boost relationships with your teammates and make for a more fun work environment, it’s important to appropriately draw the line when you’re communicating with your clients, vendors or professionally with others.
Connect with your colleagues across the country. Remote working is becoming a more common benefit within companies, and the introduction of digital platforms is helping to close the gap distance-wise between employees. The ability to instantly message or video chat with long-distance coworkers can help streamline the work process. Slack, for instance, lets you video chat in real time from your laptop or smartphone. While there’s no comparison to face-to-face interaction, having the capability to virtually connect can grow relationships and establish stronger work connections.
Even though these platforms make communication fast and simple, there’s always a risk of important messages getting lost in translation. If you’re trying to explain a complicated issue or ensure your coworker is on the same page, sometimes the most effective way is through a good old-fashioned phone call. No shorthand messaging. Just a real conversation to make sure everyone has correct clarification.
In today’s day and age, digital communication is defining the way we work, and the outcomes can be beneficial to your company’s success if done correctly. Modernizing your workplace has benefits for you, your employees and those you communicate with professionally. You might be hesitant to move to a fully digital office space, but when considering the benefits of streamlining communication, you’ll realize that it’s easier and more efficient. Just remember to draw the lines where needed, and you will succeed.