Staff Dialogue Protocol Guide

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					This document provides guidance on proper employee communication in the workplace.
This guide provides information about communication exchanges that can take place
amongst employees within the organization or amongst employees and customers or
vendors. Implementing and enforcing the suggested dialogue protocol in this document
will not only protect the public relations of the company, but it will also limit the
company's potential liability. This guide is useful for small businesses or other entities
that want to establish a uniform and consistent dialogue policy for their employees.
 (This guide walks employees through proper ways to communicate in various business
situations. Explanations are provided as to the types of communication and potential
consequences of improper communication that would fall within each category. Examples and
tips for successful transmissions are also included.)


          [Insert Company Name and Logo] Staff Dialogue Protocol Guide

                                                            Table of Contents

1.0 Introduction ............................................................................................................................ 4

   1.1 General .............................................................................................................................................. 4

   1.2 Why Should You Use This Guide? ................................................................................................... 4

2.0 Management ........................................................................................................................... 4

   2.1 Types of Communication Between Employees and Managers ......................................................... 4

   2.2 Potential Consequences of Improper Communication ...................................................................... 4

3.0 Colleagues ............................................................................................................................... 5

   3.1 Types of Communication Between Employees and Colleagues ....................................................... 5

   3.2 Potential Consequences of Improper Communication ...................................................................... 5

4.0 External Suppliers or Customers ............................................................................................ 5

   4.1 Types of Communication Between Employees and External Suppliers or Customers .................... 5

   4.2 Potential Consequences of Improper Communication ...................................................................... 6

5.0 Guidelines ............................................................................................................................... 6

   5.1 Interoffice Communications ............................................................................................................. 6

   5.2 Formatting ......................................................................................................................................... 6

6.0 Tips .......................................................................................................................................... 6

   6.1 Advice for Overall Business Communications Etiquette.................................................................. 6

7.0 Samples ................................................................................................................................... 7

   7.1 Management ...................................................................................................................................... 7



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  7.2 Colleagues ......................................................................................................................................... 8

  7.3 External Suppliers or Customers....................................................................................................... 9




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1.0     Introduction

         1.1    General

                This document is intended to educate employees on proper communication in the
                workplace. Provided within are various explanations and examples that should be
                reviewed and referenced by all employees. Effective communication has been
                shown to be a factor in levels of safety, decision-making, quality of work, new
                idea generation, teamwork, and overall employee satisfaction.

         1.2    Why Should You Use This Guide?

                Technology has not only created new ways in which we can communicate
                electronically, through these methods, transmission of business information have
                changed. Laws governing business and employment practices are also being
                continually transformed. Due to the informality caused by the increase in digital
                communications and the legal ramifications of improper exchanges, employees
                should be made aware of how the organization views digital communication.

2.0     Management

        2.1     Types of Communication Between Employees and Managers

                2.1.1   General conversation and emails, including exchanges involving personal
                        information

                2.1.2   Meetings

                2.1.3   Interoffice memos

                2.1.4   Requests (i.e., leaves of absence, purchase orders)

        2.2     Potential Consequences of Improper Communication

                2.2.1   Those in management should be recognized for the supervisory positions
                        that they hold. These employees are not peers, but leaders and mentors for
                        the organization. Utmost respect and should be given to management
                        personnel.

                2.2.2   While sharing personal information or having non-work-related
                        conversations are not prohibited, employees should be cautious as to avoid
                        inappropriate or offensive topics when conversing with anyone in a
                        business situation.


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                2.2.3   Management is recommended to uphold the organizational open-door
                        policy, allowing employees to feel free to communicate on issues they
                        may be having.

3.0     Colleagues

        3.1     Types of Communication Between Employees and Colleagues

                3.1.1   General conversation and e-mails, including exchanges involving personal
                        information

                3.1.2   Meetings

                3.1.3   Interoffice memos

        3.2     Potential Consequences of Improper Communication

                3.2.1   Organizations run on combined individual efforts as well as through
                        employees working in teams. Other positions may depend on the tasks
                        assigned to a particular employee. Properly communicating necessary data
                        and keeping a constant flow and open transmission of information will
                        increase productivity and overall output. When one cog in the system does
                        not follow procedure, the entire system may shut down. Be sure that
                        employees are aware of their roles within the company and who may be
                        dependent upon the completion of their responsibilities.

                3.2.2   Exchanges of personal information shall be limited to break times or
                        during non-office hours. Whether to internal or external customers,
                        appropriate conversation will allow the company to uphold the desired
                        image of professionalism.

                3.2.3   Follow company guidelines and procedures for specific interoffice
                        communications (i.e., the use of templates, avoidance of inappropriate
                        language) when addressing others for business purposes.

4.0     External Suppliers or Customers

        4.1     Types of Communication Between Employees and External Suppliers or
                Customers

                4.1.1   General conversation and e-mails, including personal information
                        exchanges




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                4.1.2   Business meetings, sales pitches, etc.

                4.1.3   Requests (i.e., change or purchase orders, sales communication, gratitude)

        4.2     Potential Consequences of Improper Communication

                4.2.1   Obviously, costs are the major issue associated with miscommunication between
                        suppliers or customers. Whether losing a deal that a supplier has offered or being
                        unable to secure a customer contract or sale, both types of losses mean money
                        not earned by the organization. Be professional, courteous, and conscious of your
                        audience in order to avoid offending or upsetting business partners.

                4.2.2   Beyond courteousness, overall customer service is critical. Without efforts
                        toward keeping customers happy, businesses would fail. Again, understand your
                        audience. If something seems difficult to properly convey via e-mail, don't be
                        afraid to pick up the phone. Verbal communication can make the vital difference.

5.0     Guidelines

        5.1     Interoffice Communications

                Company or department-wide mass communications will be restricted to those in
                management-level positions or IT. Employees sending these types of e-mails
                without prior approval will be reprimanded.

        5.2     Formatting

                Business communications should be formatted in a generic font style and size,
                whether in electronic or hard copy. Unless something different is appropriate, font
                color should be black. Letters, memos, and other transmissions as necessary
                should be distributed using provided company letterhead and templates.

6.0     Tips

        6.1     Advice for Overall Business Communications Etiquette

                6.1.1   Ensure the message you send, whether verbal or electronic, comes across
                        in the way it was intended. Be concise and to-the-point.

                6.1.2   When in doubt, err on the side of conservatism. If a topic is questionably
                        inappropriate or it is obvious the conversation should not be taking place
                        in the office, do not bring it up. If a conversation steers in a bad direction,
                        try to change the subject. If another employee communicates something



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                        offensive or discriminatory, report it to your direct supervisor or to HR
                        immediately.

                6.1.3   Be honest and open.

                6.1.4   Keep in mind the organizational culture when communicating.

                6.1.5   Allow for feedback and questions regarding any transmissions of
                        information.

                6.1.6   Conduct yourself in a professional manner during business meetings or
                        during professional events. Language and topics of conversation should
                        reflect the image the organization strives to project.

                6.1.7   Avoid business communication through social media except where
                        appropriate (i.e., recruiting or networking purposes). The informality of
                        this medium is not well suited for sharing organizational information.

                6.1.8   All communications for business purposes, outside of those with company
                        required templates (e.g., interoffice memos) should include contact
                        information for the recipient or follow-up directions when applicable.
                        Include your first and last name, company, title, and phone/fax
                        information in both hard copy and electronic communications.

                6.1.9   Through any means of communication, best judgment always applies.
                        Tone, content, and formality can be adjusted by taking into consideration
                        the level of the relationship (e.g., work friends) and the audience. The best
                        practice is to avoid mixture of high levels of personal information into
                        business communications in order to avoid potential liabilities.

7.0     Samples

        7.1     Management

                7.1.1   Verbal:
                        Employee: Good morning Mrs. Smith.
                        Supervisor: Good morning Jane. How was your weekend?
                        Employee: It was great. How was yours?
                        Supervisor: Very productive. I started a new workout routine and painted the
                        living room.




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                        Employee: That is productive! I better get going on that report you asked for. I
                        will let you know when it's complete.
                        Supervisor: Sounds great. Thank you for being so prompt.

                7.1.2   Written:

                        Dear Mr. Supervisor:

                        I respectfully request to take vacation on the 23rd and 24th of December. A
                        completed vacation request form is in your inbox. Please let me know as soon as
                        you are able to approve or deny this request, as travel plans are dependent upon
                        this time off. Thank you in advance.

                        Jane Doe


                        Receptionist
                        ABC Company
                        555.555.5555

        7.2     Colleagues

                7.2.1   Verbal:

                        Employee: Good morning Mrs. Smith.
                        Colleague: Good morning Jane. How was your weekend?
                        Employee: It was great. How was yours?
                        Colleague: Very productive. I started a new workout routine and painted the
                        living room.
                        Employee: That is productive! I’d better get going on that report you asked for. I
                        will let you know when it's complete.
                        Colleague: Sounds great. Thank you for being so prompt.

                7.2.2   Written

                        Carol,

                        I would very much appreciate your help on a project Tammy gave me this
                        morning. I know you are knowledgeable in this area, and I have a hard deadline
                        to meet. If you have any extra time, I would love your assistance! Give me a call
                        or send me an e-mail by lunch to let me know if you may be able to help. Let me
                        know what your schedule is like, and perhaps we can get together to chat about
                        it.




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                        Thanks!
                        Jane

        7.3     External Suppliers or Customers

                7.3.1   Verbal

                        Employee: Good morning, Judy. How can I help you today?
                        Customer: Good morning. I am calling because I received the order I placed with
                        you, and I am missing several pieces. I would like to know what I should do.
                        Employee: If you let me know exactly what is missing, I can get that sent out to
                        you as soon as possible.
                        Customer: I appreciate that. I really needed to have everything here today, but I
                        understand mistakes happen.
                        Employee: I apologize for the inconvenience. I will credit your account for the
                        pieces that were missing and include a discount voucher to use on your next
                        order when I ship these pieces to you.
                        Customer: Sounds great. Thank you so much. You have been very helpful. Have a
                        great day.
                        Employee: You do the same. Someone will be in touch with you soon.

                7.3.2   Written:

                        Dear Ms. Supplier:

                        I understand that prices have gone up over 15 percent over the last two quarters.
                        In comparison to years past, this is a significantly higher increase than we have
                        been accustomed to. We have done business with you for over 10 years and
                        would like to preserve our relationship. However, if we cannot work out a better
                        pricing arrangement, I'm afraid we will have to begin searching for a new
                        supplier. Please give me a call to discuss, or schedule a meeting with my
                        assistant.

                        I have been happy thus far with our service and would like to continue doing
                        business with your company. I would appreciate a prompt response.

                        Sincerely,



                        Jane Doe
                        Purchasing Manager
                        ABC Company
                        555.555.5555




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Description: This document provides guidance on proper employee communication in the workplace. This guide provides information about communication exchanges that can take place amongst employees within the organization or amongst employees and customers or vendors. Implementing and enforcing the suggested dialogue protocol in this document will not only protect the public relations of the company, but it will also limit the company's potential liability. This guide is useful for small businesses or other entities that want to establish a uniform and consistent dialogue policy for their employees.