Why context in communication is very important
We all spend more than 80% of our time communicating with others using emails, phone calls, chats, presentations, virtual calls, or just face-to-face interactions. Unfortunately, just because we spend most of our time communicating with our colleagues, we don’t become expert communicators.
Research shows that companies with more than 100 employees spend an average of 17 hours/week clarifying previous communications. Another study shows that poor communication costs the average large organization (more than 100,000 employees) $62.4 million per year in lost productivity.
Secret ingredient for effective communication
This leaves us with the question: What is the secret ingredient to make our communication effective? The answer is “Context.” When it comes to effective communication, people struggle to relate to the context. Whether it is verbal or written communication, context is the key.
When you communicate with your colleagues in person, your tone, body language, among other factors act as the context. These cues help your colleagues to understand and interpret your message. But, unfortunately, in the modern workplace, teams are often geographically dispersed and they mostly rely on written communication like email and group chats, where the context is more difficult to assess. In the absence of context, there is more scope for miscommunication and misunderstanding due to perceptions and biases.
Communication has no meaning without context. The hardest thing about communicating effectively is knowing how to “set the context”. This is especially true when companies connect with customers via multiple channels — such as email, social media, chat, etc. Managing this multi-channel communication ineffectively often leads to miscommunication and confusion.
Modern communication tools exacerbate the problem
In this era of work from home, companies are using communication tools like Slack, Microsoft Teams, and Twist to bring their teams together. But the big question is: Are the messages sent on these platforms effective?
Since most of these modern communication tools use channels and not specific topics, context gets lost and information gets buried. Moreover, as these tools are chat-focused, recipients may get flooded with a deluge of messages and notifications and they may end up losing some vital information that can have serious implications on their work.
Besides, Slack only focuses on chats but the information is shared in many other ways such as emails, online documents, and social media, among others. There is no way to bring active conversations in all these other forms in Slack.
How Clariti differs from other tools
With Clariti, not only can teams chat but they can also work with all communication forms naturally unlike Slack. Clariti supports email productivity tools, chat, and shared documents among others to exchange information. Not only does Clariti bring all the information in one place, but it also connects all the related information in TopicFolder.
Clariti seamlessly connects related interactions from different communication channels such as email, chat, cloud storage, and social feeds into one context-based TopicFolder. That too happens automatically in real-time without your active intervention. When you receive an email, you can immediately start chatting from the email and the recipient can understand the context that you are talking about — without you having to forward the email! Later, both the email and chat transcripts are saved automatically in a TopicFolder.
TopicFolder eliminates the need to search for information and makes it amazingly easy to see the big picture. So unlike Slack, Clariti makes it easy and natural to organize all the information thus avoiding the information overload problem.
Context improves customer interactions
Today there are thousands of ways your customers can reach your business, like social media, emails, live chat, and more. As you scale up your business, it’s crucial that you can connect with your customers on the platforms they’re using. All these channels present an opportunity for you to strengthen customer relations by providing delightful experiences. However, it can be difficult to consistently keep track of all these channels simultaneously.
Though many tools in the market can help you to combine all your channels of communication, all your conversations will still be silos within the platform. Only when you can connect all your conversations using context, you will be able to organize requests, prioritize support, manage messages efficiently, and delight customers.
Clariti brings context
Communicating within context through TopicFolder helps agents to anticipate questions, process the information faster, and provide quick troubleshooting. It doesn’t stop with this, if an agent is not able to solve the customer problem himself, he can add another agent and set the context for the new agent to understand the problem and provide a solution.
You can add or remove users in each communication in the TopicFolder without losing the context and all the information will be saved automatically. As an agent, you will have the flexibility to arrange and rename TopicFolder based on customer name, geography, or any other parameter you prefer and take further action like share, create a to-do, email from chat or create a flag for follow up.
Advantages of communicating in context
When team members use multiple channels of communication, it’s common to lose track of what has been done, what’s happening, and what needs to be done. The context in communication helps you to keep track of projects, events, meetings, deadlines, deliverables, etc.
A good team communication app like Clariti will help you to keep track of all your communication linked by context and stay organized. Context in communication brings clarity in your communication, facilitates workflow, and gets your work organized. It also has other indirect benefits like better employee engagement, higher employee productivity and lower employee turnover.