Over-Communicating in a Startup

I’ll be the first to admit it: I’m not the best at communicating. I have a ton of ideas in my head and I know exactly where we’re going, but I have a tendency to overlook the fact that just because I feel confident about things that everyone else feels confident as well. Fortunately, I recognize that communicating is critical, so I’ve come up with a rhythm and process. In general, I think entrepreneurs should err on the side of over-communicating.

Here are a few ideas to help with developing a communication rhythm:

For some entrepreneurs, communicating consistently and clearly comes naturally. For others, like myself, communication takes a more deliberate rhythm and process. Entrepreneurs should work hard to over-communicate with their constituents.

What else? What are some other thoughts on over-communicating in a startup?

4 thoughts on “Over-Communicating in a Startup

  1. It is not only important for startups, its important for larger organizations as well. The era of mushroom management is over. I make sure that any company I am an investor in or running has a communication and accountability system setup like Asana.com or GetFlow.com.

  2. I completely agree with Christian. We use Trello to make sure we are all communicating with each other at PrimeAspire. I lead the team at our startup and I quickly realised that successful startups shouldn’t simply focus on communication from the CEO or COO, but it’s very important that each team member recognises the benefit of internal communication and practises good team communication. To put it simply, communication can make or break a startup.

  3. I have a very small staff of writers, editors and sales people. Many frequently work from home (myself included) so keeping everyone on the same page is always a challenge. We email back and forth constantly but I try to touch base with each individual by phone or in person at least weekly.

    We meet together as a team every Wednesday morning and I have found it very useful to create collaborative agendas for those meetings on Google Drive. Everyone knows to add their good news/progress reports, questions, concerns/problems to the agenda by Tuesday night. I can then review it before the meeting and be better prepared with answers or at least a game plan for getting answers. Writing about our questions and needs forces all of us to be careful and specific with our words, which can be much more effective than “surprises” and unexpected frustrations that can otherwise pop out of nowhere at a staff meeting.

  4. As an employee, I really enjoy those check-in sessions and tactical meetings. It gives me a bigger picture of what is going on, which drives me to do more. I also appreciate the fact that I’m getting the inside scoop on what’s happening with the company overall, what our goals are, and so on.

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