Recently I was talking with a staff member of a larger church. She consistently fears the stability of her job. She never knows what her pastor is thinking. She’s considering looking for a new position, not because she doesn’t like her work, but because she isn’t sure about the future of her work. She claims that living with uncertainty is the standard when working on this church staff.
I’ve learned over the years that communication is one of the most important aspects of the field of leadership. In fact, it may be the thing that makes or breaks a leader’s success.
When a leader fails to communicate, it actually communicates a great deal to the organization. Unfortunately, it’s not always an encouraging message. The unknown invites people to create their own scenarios, which rarely turns out well for the leader, the team, or the organization.
Failing to communicate says to the people on your team:
You don’t care – You are apathetic towards the emotional and practical needs of people on your team.
You don’t know -You may not be brave enough to say so, but, don’t worry, others are probably saying it for you.
You can’t decide – Your team thinks that you’re incapable of making a decision, either because you’re afraid of people’s reactions or you’re not a strong enough leader to make a decision.
You don’t value – Your silence produces perhaps the most dangerous scenario when people believe you don’t think they are worthy of knowing. Put yourself in their shoes and see how that one feels.
What’s the bottom line?
Communicate through a decision.
Keep people informed along the way.