Thursday, July 14 | Netsmart Life, Thought Leadership

Recognizing Words Matter in the Workplace

By Bret Fischer, Senior Director, Talent Acquisition

As the summer flies by, it’s easy to recognize that each month is filled with some significant and lesser-known holidays on the calendar. Each of these holidays, whether a national day of observation or an awareness week, has made me think about the importance of one of our Netsmart values, Words Matter.

Two big events in June, Pride Month and Juneteenth, are a cause of celebration for many and a cause of controversy for others. Valuing the fact that words matter in the workplace helps us all to focus on being supportive in our communications, choosing our words carefully and knowing when it is best to say nothing at all.

When reflecting on our value, Words Matter, I’m reminded of a simple communications lesson in a business leadership class from years ago that is still very applicable to this day. Communicating in person (or on video) is always the best option to ensure your message is received as it is intended. When you truly hear the words in conversation, inflections of one’s voice, and see facial expressions, you have minimal chance of misinterpreting the intended message. If you take the visual aspect away, you are left with hearing the tone of the voice and the words that are used. Losing sight of the facial expressions increases the odds that the message might be received in an unintended way. Communicating via a text format allows for a much greater opportunity for miscommunication, so when using this method, it becomes vitally important to be very selective of your word choice.

Working in a culture where words matter doesn’t make it a utopia. People make mistakes, emotions can play into communications, and messages can come across in a way that was never intended. When your culture values words and communication, you have the ability – and expectation – to talk through those misunderstandings. You feel empowered to share your feelings with the knowledge they will be heard and respected. If this sounds like a culture you would enjoy working in, please take a look at the culture and careers at Netsmart.



Meet the Author

Bret Fischer · Senior Director, Talent Acquisition

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