While most managers think they are having higher level conversations about performance, the truth usually falls short. Communication typically centers on projects, status updates, issues, etc. When we take a closer look we see one of four types of manager/employee communication:
Four Categories of Manager-employee Communication
There are three settings where managers and employees frequently find time to connect
- Impromptu communication
Job responsibilities, project status, goals, and all manner of work issues are everyday topics. These conversations happen in spur-of-the-moment ways and places: phone, in-person, email, open door practices and more.
- General questions and general answers
Most employees are sincerely interested in knowing how they are doing. Efforts to solicit feedback typically fall under the “asking general questions” and “receiving meaningless answers. For example:
Employee Asks: How am I doing?
Manager Answers: You’re doing great.
Employee Asks: “What can I do better?”
Manager Answers: “I can’t think of anything.”
Manager Asks: “How is everything going?”
Employee Answer: “Great”.