Sharing information leads to success
In all of history, one of the most compelling illustrations of the terrible consequences of stifled information flow is the tragedy of trench warfare in World War 1, which has since become the defining dictionary example for the word “futility”. Whatever your business or project is, the last thing you need is to get bogged down because information isn’t flowing in your organization.
Luckily, we live in a world where information flows much faster, through emails, text messaging, wireless phone calling, scanning, etc. But which one is best? Each have their pros and cons for different applications. For work teams and organizations, free conference calls keep information flowing better by offering:
- real-time group communication
- more focus, less distraction
- opportunities to build team spirit
“Those who don’t know their history are doomed to repeat it”. Although we can’t bring those World War 1 soldiers back, we can certainly honor their memory by trying to learn from the mistakes that caused them such grief, and keep our information flowing.
A cautionary tale of blocked information
Although trench warfare had been used for thousands of years, by 1914 when the First World War started the recent invention of reliable machine guns had rendered it obsolete.
Unfortunately, it took 3 years for this critical information to filter up to decision makers. In the meantime, generals kept ordering soldiers to go “over the top” and advance through machine gun fire.
Even as late as July 1916, the British Army suffered 57,000 casualties on the first day of the Battle of the Somme without gaining any ground. Over a million soldiers died over 4 ½ months for an “advance” of 6 miles.
The problem lay in the practice of the military culture of the day to separate the “enlisted men” who fought on the front lines as much as possible from the “commissioned officers” who lead from the rear. The enlisted soldiers were well aware that the traditional “charge” was too deadly to be useful, and they had all kinds of ideas on how to adapt to the new reality, but there was no communication system for them to get the information to military planners.
Battles often hinged on the initiative of platoon commanders acting on their instincts, and a lack of quick and effective communication is often cited as a key factor in the ineffectiveness of trench warfare in WW1.
Maybe if the military’s of the day had today’s more open corporate culture, and effortless information flow technology at their fingertips, millions of lives could have been saved.
One thing we do know, is we can do better.
Connect important ideas at all levels
Whatever your organization is trying to do, the best way to move forward and break through logjams that you face is to enhance communication in your organization. Sharing information on each level is important, but the most crucial process is to filter information from front line workers who have an intimate knowledge of how the organization relates to its customers, up through middle management, to senior decision makers.
Free Conference calls excel at connecting the “foot soldiers” to the “generals” because they are so respectful of each person’s time. For a scheduled 11:00 am call, all you need to do is be at your desk and pick up the telephone, and you are instantly connected to the entire team.
Keep your meetings cheap and cheerful
Too many meetings don’t happen because of budget restraints, but “saving money” by cancelling meetings actually costs companies a lot of money when a lack of information sharing causes serious problems.
When World War 1 started, it was commonly believed that “The war will be over by Christmas”. A lack of investment in communication dragged the war out for four years, costing billions of dollars and millions of lives.
Free Conference Calls can be arranged for free, and even if the convenience of a toll free number or call recording are added for a small fee, the cost of conference calls and the staff time to set them up and attend them is so low that you can’t afford not to practice fluid communication.
Regular phone meetings keep information flowing
One of the great failings of the 20th century military was that they only got their generals in the same room with the soldiers perhaps once a year, and of course, the soldiers weren’t allowed to speak. Battles were often lost because crucial information took too long to get to the right people.
Free Conference calls are so easy to coordinate and takes up so little staff time that you can afford to schedule regular staff meeting by phone. Regular meetings are a good way to build a strong corporate culture, and keep the information flowing so it can get to where it needs to go before it is stale.
Build trust and team spirit
The biggest benefit of keeping the information flowing with conference calls is that information sharing builds trust, and trust is the lifeblood of team spirit. By making 2-way communication easy, and providing a simple forum for celebrating the contributions of employees, teleconferencing can help create a fun, productive and active corporate culture.
Smooth information flow leads to success
No traipsing around to meetings, no wasted travel time, no interruptions.
The benefits of group calling may seem obvious when dealing with remote teams based in multiple cities or on different continents, but they are just as compelling in a large office complex, or when a group is spread across even two physical sites in one city.
Free Conference calls are the most efficient form of effective communication, because they happen in real-time, and everyone is focused on thinking together. A strong corporate culture is a successful one, and having the whole team on the same page is your surest way to building a solid bottom line.