HQS 620 Identify three workplace environmental factors
HQS 620 Identify three workplace environmental factors
There are several workplace environmental factors which can make or break the success of a project. Among them, Transparency and openness in communication, response to performance, and teamwork and support are the three factors which plays major role in project communication (Rajkumar, 2010).
Transparency and openness in communications indicate that employees have a say to the project and it is valued. This way, they feel that they really belong to the team and that their contributions will have an impact to the project thus, working becomes more significant for them (Rajkumar, 2010). This kind of discussion permitting people to share their views and thoughts on how to successfully execute the project will contribute greatly to achieving goals set. Response to performance is giving feedback regularly on how the member of the team performed. It involves giving positive feedback on what the member is doing great and what needs to be improved (Rajkumar, 2010). Feedbacks must be purposeful, and the delivery must be appropriately done as to motivate members to strive more for the better. Teamwork and support means focusing on the positive things of each member ang disregarding the negatives. Issues must be dealt with by the team themselves and must work together as a team supporting each other through constant communication. A team with high spirit can accomplish great things together and can still work good even when issues or problems are encountered along the way (Rajkumar, 2010).
Despite these factors positive impact on project communication, it can also have negative impact on it. Transparency and openness in communication may go beyond what’s necessary and may sometimes become too personal that may affect the team’s camaraderie. Members may have the tendency to be too open that others may take as rudeness or unnecessary. Response to performance may impact negatively when feedbacks become too opinionated that more emphasis on the negative aspect are given than the positive ones. Members may not strive more to improve as what is being seen more are negatives on them. Teamwork and support negatively affect project communication when no support and teamwork are practice in the team. This way, each one work on their own and do not care for the other members even though there are working for one project. Without teamwork and support, there may be areas in the project which may not be executed properly or not done accordingly, or on time as they are not working as a team, and no one is monitoring each other’s work and to help when warranted.
My own communication biases can negatively affect project communication if I will not learn to uncover or be aware of it. Because others may give negative assumptions on the way I communicate. The tone of my voice, body languages, facial expressions, and even posture can convey negative assumptions (Walker, 2020) to the one I am speaking with, thus, learning to be aware of my implicit biases, knowing it has consequences, and learning to replace bias responses with non-biased responses will be beneficial for me. These steps according to American Psychology (Walker, 2020) are ways how our brain can adapt to new perceptions on implicit biases thus, we can have a more inclusive communication style.
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Rajkumar, S. (2010). Art of communication in project management. Paper presented at PMI® Research Conference: Defining the Future of Project Management, Washington, DC. Newtown Square, PA: Project Management Institute.
Walker, M. How Implicit Bias Affects Your Communication Skills. (2020, June 9). Articles. https://articles.tadnetwork.com/2020/06/09/how
When designing a quality or safety improvement project, the project manager and team must consider workplace
environmental factors, such as poor compliance of current practice and protocols, distrust of administration, or unrealistic time constraints might have adverse effects on project communication and success. If staff already has poor compliance following current practice and protocols, introducing more changes and expectations for day to day tasks may not be translated well into practice despite communicative efforts to stress the importance of the new practice change. If the culture is operating a certain way, a new practice change will not automatically change that workflow compliance. Similarly if the staff does not feel valued or that their needs are being met, they are likely to distrust their direct managers and hospital administration. This unfortunate negative culture causes a breakdown in the staff’s willingness to listen to new practice and protocol changes and see the value in implementing them. Time is of the essence, as the saying goes, and when communicating and rolling out a project the timeline is very important to gain acceptance and understanding by the staff affected by the practice change. Additionally the project manager or spokesperson can adversely affect the communication of the project to team members and staff influenced by the project roll out. According to Messner (2021), as a professional communicator, the project manager or spokesperson should actively use language that includes people of all genders/sexual orientations, ages, races/ethnicities, socio-economic statuses, and disabilities in a way that makes no assumptions of the groups discussed.This allows the project manager or spokesperson’s to remain unbiased in order to effectively communicate the projects goals and achieve buy in by staff.
Messner, L. (2021, August 18). Why and How to Communicate with Bias-Free, Inclusive Language. Harris & Associates. https://www.weareharris.com/resources/blog/why-and-how-to-communicate-with-bias-free-inclusive-language
An organizations culture can have positive or negative influence on project communication. Butt & Savolainen (2016) discuss how a dysfunctional culture have internal competition, are resistant to change and innovation is not valued. In this type of culture team members do not work together and can result in breaks in communication causing delays or failures in the project.
Staffing issues can influence project communication. If a facility has staff that are not open or receptive to change, communication could not each all-expected recipients if leaders are not engage in the change process. Staff could be reluctant to change in that they have done things a specific way and do not see the need or benefit for change. This reluctance to the change could result in lack of communication on the project and result in delays are project failures.
Communication of all stakeholders is important when implementing change projects. When regulatory partners are not involved, rules and regulations that could impact the project could delay the project or derail the project. Rajhans (2018) discuss the need for effective information exchange in that the project information gets to the information to stakeholders, project managers and core team to ensure that the work progresses consistently. When regulatory partners are not informed of project changes, they are not able to provide input until they are brought up to speed and this may result in project delays to ensure rules and regulations are not compromised.
In thinking about my own personal bias and how that may influence project communication, it could be over communication. Efforts to keep everyone informed of the project and changes, I could over communicate and provide information to some that may not be of any relevance. Rajhans (2018) discuss how information needs to be strategic and tactical in delivery of the needed information to the correct recipient. I would attempt to avoid this in the development of the communication plan of what stakeholders and participants need what information to ensure that the information is delivered to the intended recipient. This would assist me in not sending too much information to everyone.
Butt, A., Naaranoja, M., & Savolainen, J. (2016). Project change stakeholder communication. International Journal of Project Management, 34(8), 1579. https://doi-org.lopes.idm.oclc.org/10.1016/j.ijproman.2016.08.010
Rajhans, K. (2018). Effective Communication Management: A Key to Stakeholder Relationship Management in Project-Based Organizations. IUP Journal of Soft Skills, 12(4), 47–66
Three workplace environmental factors that could adversely influence project communication are:
- Nursing unions – collaboration and communication between organizational leadership and nursing unions at times can be cumbersome and challenging, especially if changes brought about by a project can impact nursing workflow. The formalized process of filing and responding to grievances about changes in the work place can create a ping-pong or back and forth of communication that can impact timeline and delay project work from progressing.
- Availability and use of technology – most health care organizations provide staff with an organizational email. If utilizing email for communication, the message may not be read in a timely manner or may not be read at all. If information shared is time sensitive, this could negatively impact a project (IvyPanda, 2020).
- Generational culture of staff – Baby boomers, Gen Xers and Gen Yers all have preferred communication styles, values and attitudes toward leadership and work. Without a clear understanding of how to communicate to each of these groups, the message could be disregarded, overlooked, or lost (Bourne, 2016).
Communication bias is influenced by social and cultural pressure, profession background, education, internal motivations, and emotions; they can hinder objective reasoning and message delivery (Huckle, 2018). For me, I can improve on active listening. There are time where I find myself thinking about how to respond to someone before they are finished, which can cause me to miss information.
Bourne, L. (2016). Targeted communication: the key to effective stakeholder engagement. Procedia Social and Behavioral Sciences, 226, 431-438. https://www.doi.org/10.1016/j.sbspro.2016.06.208
Huckle, B. (2018, October 8). How cognitive bias affects effective communication. https://secondnatureuk.co.uk/blog/how-cognitive-bias-affects-effective-communication/
IvyPanda, (n.d.). Factors influencing communication in organizations research paper. https://ivypanda.com/essays/factors-influencing-communication-in-organizations/
Workplace environmental factors can have a positive or negative effect on project communication. For instance, organizational culture can create an environment that encourages or suppresses effective communication through its values or policies (PMI, 2017). If the staff in the organization have a culture of informal communication, it can speed up communication because it eliminates formalities that might consume time. However, lack of formal communication can interfere with documentation and communication management, such as user reports, and projects need to record documentation for future reference.
Organizational structure can also affect communication. Organizations with tall hierarchies tend to be bureaucratic, which delays the movement of information and decision-making (Raziq et al., 2020). For instance, obtaining approval for a particular request could take a long time because of several management levels. Conversely, flatter hierarchies have shorter communication channels and encourage quick decision-making. As a result, a project with a tall structure could take longer than a similar one in a flat-structured organization.
Projects must adhere to regulatory requirements. Failure to meet regulatory requirements can hinder the accomplishment of core project activities (Schwierking & Anantatmula, 2015). Conflicting regulatory requirements can complicate project communication. For instance, a large project in two states with different local regulations can complicate project communication. Also, most regulatory requirements require approvals and formal documentation, which can be time-consuming to obtain, complicating the project’s communication.
Personal communication bias, such as optimism bias, can negatively influence project communication when I fail to acknowledge the reality and instead try to be optimistic about facts that indicate a negative trend. For instance, trying to be confident about a project schedule that seems to be lagging can encourage communication that does not represent the actual progress.
Schwierking, J. & Anantatmula, V.S. (2015). Project management and regulatory compliance. Business Compliance, 48-61.