Is your method of communication failing employees?

New research findings about the human brain might change the way you communicate with your workforce

Is your method of communication failing employees?

More than half the human brain is involved in visual processing so visuals play a “huge role in our ability to communicate”, according to doctor in behavioural economics, Dr. Alastair Goode who led new research into communication in the workplace.

Goode’s research found that in a business scenario visual communication prompts a deeper level of understanding and a “more engaging experience for audiences” than other forms such as written text.

“With our propensity for visualisation, it is no surprise that infographics, screenshots, screencasts, gifs, and short videos have become so popular,” said Goode.

Indeed, two-thirds (67%) of employees are better at completing tasks when information includes text with images or video than by communications featuring text alone, according to Goode’s research commissioned by TechSmith.

Moreover, employees absorb information 7% more quickly when they are communicated with using text with static images than when provided only with text.

Australian employees were one of the most progressive workforces surveyed, with video communication and collaboration in the workplace being most called for by Australians compared with other countries that participated in the study.

The study also found the Australian workforce placed a strong focus on work-based social networks, with 26% of Aussie companies investing in these channels over the last few years, compared with only 16% in the United States.

It also found that one in two Australians said they would understand information more efficiently at work if their company increased visual communications

Wendy Hamilton, CEO at TechSmith, added that if you’re new to creating visual content, the key is to “start small”.

“Don’t overwhelm yourself or your employees by requiring all messages to include visuals,” said Hamilton.

“You could start by taking screenshots and marking them up to show changes you’d like to see on the company website, or make a short screencast video of how to access your new online HR system, etc.

“As you learn how simple it can be, I think you’ll find an organic and natural path to discovering how visuals can help your business better communicate.”

The research, surveyed 4,500 office workers across six countries, including 500 Australian office workers.

 

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