We already know that communication is important in relationships of all types, both professional and personal.
But one place where proper communication really can mean the difference between the life or death of a relationship is in communication between employees working different shifts and the clients served by those individuals.
Lapses in this type of communication may not be that big a deal for some teams. For example, retail workers typically have shorter interactions with individual customers, so they won’t be as affected by what goes on during the shift prior to their arrival.
However, for other teams, communication missteps in connection with clients can be nothing short of catastrophic.
If you’ve ever worked in a shift-based environment, you might be familiar with the strife that is common between different shifts.
Employees working the second and third shifts may become resentful of the team members working the first shift, complaining that these team members are leaving all the hard work for later in the day. Of course, this isn’t usually the case.
For example, employees in nursing homes almost never have a clean or easy handoff. Instead, they must simply leave the next employee in place to pick up where they left off.
Helping employees overcome the incorrect assumptions they make about their fellow shift-workers will not only help to improve the relationships between your employees, it will also help employees make the transition from one shift to the next more easily.
In order to make this change in your work environment, you’ll need to help your employees understand what goes on during their fellow team members’ shift and how the shift transition looks from the other side of the clock.
Where possible, increasing the overlap between shifts is one great way to improve communication between employees and will help both groups gain a better understanding of the other shift’s work and responsibilities.
Could your team use some help in this area?
Formal team-development training programs like CMOE’s can help you and your employees get the most out of your working relationships and help you avoid costly mistakes and miscommunication.
Click here to learn more about CMOE’s training methods for improving teamwork between shifts, and consider hiring our professional coaching and consulting services to bring your teams up to the next level.