Human beings talk all day but that doesn’t mean they are communicating. How can we ensure effective corporate messaging when there’s a geographical barrier to boot?
How To Streamline Global Communication And Project Planning With A Collaborative LMS
Talking seems relatively simple and straightforward. It isn’t. A lot of the time we’re talking to someone or talking at them, instead of talking with them. As a result what you’re saying and what they’re hearing are worlds apart. When your work-force is multi-national, the communication distance is literal as well as metaphorical. It’s not just about language. It covers conversation styles, cultural mores and even time zones. How can you work around this with a collaborative LMS? Is there any way to streamline communication and project planning by using learning technology?
- Focus On The Voice
Words seem like the foundation communication is built on. But it’s actually a very small fraction. The rest of your message is transmitted through tone of voice, body language and other non-verbal cues. Think about it. How often have you misread a text or email? And that’s when you’re speaking the same language. Adding a tongue you’re unfamiliar with (or don’t speak at a native level) makes things worse. So, when you’re communicating with overseas trainees use vocal communication as much as possible. You can always recap on email but call first. Get an LMS with built-in call or video messaging features to cut down your international phone bill. And ensure the LMS has automated call-recording tools as well for accountability and review. Those call records can clear up misunderstandings and avoid work-related conflicts.
- Embrace Video Conferencing
While voice calls are better than typed communication, they still don’t beat face-to-face interaction. In the global workplace, this is easily achieved through webcam and video conferencing. It adds most of the missing communication elements we’ve mentioned. But it still allows a safe distance between trainees. In a sense, this makes it less intimidating. Check that your LMS video-conferencing tools are compatible with all trainees’ devices.
These include smartphones, tablets and desktops that may have different OS or manufacturing specs. Also, don’t call someone unannounced whether on video or audio. It disrupts their work day. Instead, schedule calls in advance, keep them brief, make your point and invite them to paraphrase a call summary. This ensures they understood what you were saying.
- Incorporate Social Media
Many organizations prefer to keep communication within corporate platforms. It maintains confidentiality, ensures data security and exhibits professionalism. In reality though, we operate best in familiar spaces. Many of us would rather use instant messaging apps than corporate memos. Integrate social media into your LMS if you want to formalize its use. Create closed office groups on social media and set some ground rules. The idea is to get everyone involved and invite them to voice their ideas. Plus, many modern LMS apps allow audio calls and video calls. You can even send a voice note instead of a text. It offers that added nuance to your messaging (tone, pauses, accents, etc.).
- Keep A Community Calendar
When you’re dealing with an international firm it can be hard to track milestones and deadlines. Everyone is operating on their own time zone and under their own constraints. In some countries, offices close at three while others have extended lunches. Others won’t touch a computer screen before 11 am. That’s in addition to the usual efficiency barriers in any work-place. To keep everyone on time and on task draft a joint calendar that has everyone’s due dates. It adds an element of oversight by triggering our intrinsic competitiveness. Program your LMS to send reminders and notifications when deadlines are coming up. And if the administrator notices anyone struggling to keep up, they can reach out at individual levels.
- Invest In A Collaborative LMS With Robust And Customizable Reporting Features
You must have some oversight when dealing with a global team. An LMS with customizable reporting allows you to keep track of individual performance and group online training activities. A report might disclose that your customer call center employees aren’t keeping in touch. That they barely interact via social learning resources and that they’re falling behind in their certifications. As a result, you can figure out why the communication is lacking and how to address the problem using learning technology. Such as offering them the opportunity to host their own events or contribute to the online training library.
- Break It Into Small Groups And Manageable Milestones
One of the perks of using a collaborative LMS for eLearning project planning is creating a sense of community. Every member of the team feels like they’re part of something bigger. Something with a purpose. But that can backfire if employees start to lose their individualism or feel lost in the shuffle. For this reason, you should break your workforce into smaller groups (making the most of the LMS user group feature) and assign roles. Create manageable milestones so that everyone knows what’s expected of them and what to expect from the online training program.
Project Managers have a tough task because they’re the ultimate middleman. They liaise between every facet of the job, from bosses to subordinate staff and from hands-on work to reports. Their work can be even tougher when their charges are in different countries. How can you utilize a collaborative LMS to streamline communication and enhance efficiency in project planning? Use typed-messaging as a back-up; your primary communication modes should be voice calls and video conferencing. Check that all your training devices are webcam compatible. Add social media integration to your LMS and list everybody’s deadlines on a calendar everyone can see.
Global training may have its own set of challenges, thanks to the geographical divide and cultural differences. However, the right LMS can help you make trainees feel right at home, regardless of their performance gaps or physical location. Adobe Captivate Prime features all the tools you need to personalize the eLearning experience without going out of your price range. From personal dashboards to social learning integration.
For more details, please write to Adobe Captivate Prime team at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Originally published at elearningindustry.com