Check Out the Best Team Communication Tools of 2017

The business world requires a certain amount of synergy between departments, colleagues, and teams. Reaching this synergy can be simple. Effective communication in the workplace enables your whole organization to stay on the same page. In the modern world, companies are using the best team communication tools to get every employee unified in one central dialogue. These tools take the form of powerful and dynamic apps that allow for productive collaboration. Productive collaboration can mean the difference between foreseeing trends, controlling your business, or plummeting from a lack of foresight.

The best team communication tools help make time-tracking, project management, and communication & collaboration seamless. General operational aspects of your business are optimized with communication software and tools. Scaling companies can use communication software to help make changes succinct and increase productivity with cooperative workflow. There are dozens of team communication tools available. Most options are relatively inexpensive and will be worth the subscription.

The pet franchise company, Splash and Dash Groomerie & Boutique, has developed its own proprietary software that performs all the functions of the best team communication tools. The terminal software is an individualized and perfected tool for Splash and Dash franchise owners. Functions like employee scheduling, time-clock, time-off, POS, and communication are all features handled within the dashboard. The most advantageous component of the software is that company developers can tweak the functions—meeting the needs of each franchise owner.

For small business owners, or those just looking for the best team communication tools, Splash and Dash has compiled a list of the 8 best team communication tools available for your company.

Evernote Business

Evernote Business is an extension of the note-taking app named simply, Evernote. The difference is the app allows users to share ideas with a large number of people with a team collaboration tool. This tool resembles a giant digital whiteboard. Colleagues can jot down notes as contributions of their ideas and work-production within the whiteboard. This allows teams to work in real-time across the globe with all ideas centralized.


  • Collaboration in a Single Workspace
  • Systemizes Team Projects
  • Search Documents Without Opening Them
  • Presentation Mode
  • Idea Boards

Price: $12 per user/month


Trello is a multifunctional app that arranges notes and projects in logical order. This app’s navigation is simple but elegant, offering information at a glance. Trello is used by Fortune 500 companies like Adobe, Google, and Pixar. Operating Trello is a fun and intuitive process with drag-and-drop tasks appearing under different statuses. Each status indicates a tasks’ priority level.


  • Prioritizes/Organizes Tasks List by Date & Concern
  • Management Board Displays Tasks & Ideas
  • Collaboration Commenting
  • Create Multiple Task Boards
  • File Attachment

Price: Standard–Free/ $5/month for Trello Gold

Liquid Planner

Liquid Planner uses smart technology to set realistic goals for project management. The software uses a combination of best-case and worst-case scenarios to prioritize. As one of the best team communication tools, the software handles project management, time-tracking, and communication. The dashboard is responsive and adapts to your team’s workflow.


  • Estimates Realistic & Practical Range of Time for Task Completion
  • Commenting on Schedule & Tasks
  • Collaboration Boards
  • Resource Management
  • Scheduling Screen

Price: Standard Plan (50 projects) $29 user/month–Professional (300 projects) $39 user/month


Slack software is one of the best team communication tools for companies that need to be in constant communication. Users can create a Slack channel—set up notifications–to create a constant dialogue feed that all relevant employees on the channel can see in real-time. This boosts productivity and helps managers get insight into the timeline of each project. The software is packed with shortcuts and timesavers that makes it easier on your team.


  • Team Chat Communication
  • Integration with Apps like Google Drive/Box/Dropbox
  • Set Reminders
  • Highlight Words for Notifications
  • Team Correspondence
  • Slackbots

Price: Basic Plan is free—Standard Plan $8 user/month—Plus Plan $15 user/month

Concept Inbox

Concept Inbox is the ideal communication tools for teams that collaborate on creative tasks like graphic design, app design, and annotation on video design. This software helps clients work with teams within the creative process. Planning, prototyping, and templated approved designs can streamline your team’s task list.


  • Prototyping Web/Mobile/Tablet Apps
  • Commenting/Annotating On Designs & Notes
  • File Sharing of Videos/ Design Image Files/ PDFs
  • Real-Time Collaboration
  • Discuss Work with Clients & Stakeholders
  • Version Control
  • Project History

Price: Starter Plan (3 projects) $14/month—Unlimited Plan (unlimited projects) $25/month—Small Team Plan (5 users) $49/month


Airtable is great for teams that are looking to expand the limitations of Excel and Google Sheets. The interactive spreadsheets allow multiple users to work on documents in real-time while allowing organized ideas, admins, and attachment of documents & images for specified rows and cells. The app’s collection of editable templates helps automate a tedious workload. Templates cover everything from film production to wedding planning.


  • Instantly Synced Changes Via Cloud-Computing
  • Multiple Dashboard Views
  • Link Related Content
  • Integration with Most Major Apps

Price: Standard is Free—Plus $10/month—Pro $20/month—Enterprise, Individualized Pricing


Fleep is one top best team communication tools for the next generation of chatting. The software was developed with project collaboration in mind with channels able to integrate between email apps or Google Hangouts. No matter what messenger tool your team uses, Fleep can sync every conversation. This cuts out hours of redundancy from back-and-forth emailing.


  • Team Member/Partner Chatting
  • Email Compatibility & Integration
  • Pin Important Messages to Side of Any Conversation
  • File Sharing

Price: Standard is Free—Business $5 users/month—More plans available on request


Notion takes the team management experience and flips all obsolete modes on their heads. This tool makes planning & discussing projects, sharing, and project management effortless tasks. The notion can be altered for a tailored experience that meets your company’s specific needs. Alongside this individualization, the software is easily integrated into other chat apps for more streamlined communication.


  • To-Do Lists
  • Weekly Planner
  • Note Taking
  • File Sharing
  • Commenting
  • Project Planning
  • Weekly Checklist
  • Shared Whiteboard Navigation

Price: Free (5 users)—Pro Plan $5 user/month

How to Find the Best Software for Your Team

With countless multifunctioning apps out there, it’s hard to discern which is the best team communication tool for your team’s specific needs. Figuring out which one to go with is as simple as asking yourself a few questions.

What is the problem?

What issues are you trying to eliminate, solve, or automate? Consider what your team needs. What tools can better equip them to do their jobs? If too much time is spent on creative brainstorm meetings, finding a simple communication tool like Slack can help to stop excessive meetings. With Slack allowing more room for real-time collaboration, your team is in constant dialogue.

Map the Current Workflow

Before considering automating apps, single out the logistics that your team spends on tedious activities. This is the first step in eliminating redundancy (your employees will appreciate it). If a specific type of software can help facilitate the daily workload for employees, begin your search there.

Find the Solution

Business software providers typically design their products around an arising issue that’s common in the workplace. If your company’s issue is feeling inhibited by the limitations of standard emailing. It is time to find a more comprehensive communication app for your team to boost productivity. The perfect app offers a solution to your problem. Fortunately, many communication software applications offer free trials. This way, you can trial-and-error experiment to find the best one for your team. However, remember that too much change can often lead to dissent, so do your research first before implementing software changes.


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5 Strategies on How to Improve Communication Skills at Work

In the rush that happens around the office, often effective communication gets pushed aside for the more immediate tasks. However, good communication streamlines business solutions. Succinctness between departments, and fostering creativity, are two important products of good communication. Developing these company abilities leads to stronger business practices. Don’t brush aside tips on how to improve communication skills at work. Participation in effective communication can cut overhead and support your bottom line.

In fact, when communication strategies are improved in the workplace shareholders receive a 47% higher return, according to a Holmes report. From the same report, of the 400 corporations surveyed over a year, an estimated $37 billion was lost as a byproduct of poor communication.

When employees are communicating it leads to stronger employee engagement, drive business results, and promotes innovation. Good communication should be integral to company culture. When employees feel encouraged to speak, they feel encouraged to think. This encouragement drives success. Even the most fluid of workflow systems can learn how to improve communication skills at work.

How to Improve Communication Skills at Work

1. Active Listening Vs. Passive Listening

Medical research shows that most humans speak between 120 and 150 words per minute, compared with the 600-800 rate at which we think. Many times, when someone is speaking, we are thinking of other things than what that person is saying. What am I going to eat for dinner tonight? When is this meeting over? Etc. What this means for improving communication is actively suppressing the inner monologue so that we can engage with the speaker. When one takes the time to stay present in the conversation everyone involved feels rewarded. There are a few active ways to do this:

Never talk over people. This demonstrates disrespect and a lack of regard for the speaker’s viewpoint. Let people finish their point before chiming in or giving feedback.

Refrain from finishing other’s sentences. Some do this to show active listening, but this can be misconstrued as dis-empowering behavior. Instead, paraphrase what the speaker has just said before you comment. Ok, good point Michelle, your idea is to embrace native marketing this quarter. Now….

Maintain eye contact. In the days of smartphones, and employees being engrossed in their monitors it’s difficult to set aside the time to look someone in the eyes. This shows a person you are not distracted and are not focusing on what they’re saying. Eye contact is important.

Following these guidelines can deter passive listening. If you are consciously exhibiting behavior that promotes active listening your listening skills will improve greatly.

2.  Mindful Communication

Being more conscientious of your body language and tone are divisions of active listening. Displaying open body language makes others feel more comfortable and encouraged to speak. If you cross your arms during meetings, others interpret this as a defensive posture. Instead, rest your arms by your side. Nodding while others speak is another non-verbal way to show others you are actively listening. Try not monopolize the conversation. State your comments, then let others speak. The longer you speak the more people are disengaging. Even smiling—when appropriate—can help encourage others. Showing relaxed and open posture is key.

Also, think about the space in which you are having your meetings. Are meetings in a conference room? What is the arrangement of the furniture? Where are people facing?The arrangement of furniture and use of office space can influence communication greatly. Some progressive companies like to use couches to host meetings. Consider your employees’ needs, and the objective of the meeting, before calling a meeting, considering the best placement for this meeting.

Of course, not every meeting needs to be a ‘roundtable’ discussion—if you are doing a mass training or making announcements this is more effectively done with people facing forward—but if the meeting’s goal is to brainstorm, a ’roundtable’ space may be more conducive to planning.

3. Practical Meetings and Foregoing Unnecessary Ones

Most employees will never learn how to improve communication skills at work by attending dozens of meetings on a single subject. Adversely, employee productivity will never improve when employees are hung up in meetings instead of getting to the tasks at hand.

Meetings are the formal structure of information exchange. When meetings become an impediment, instead of a tool, you might consider curtailing both the time spent in meetings and the number of meetings. One thoughtful meeting can replace the time of four unproductive meetings. Maintaining a person’s attention is easier in short spans when objectives are completed.

Avoid the corporate paradox of calling meetings to discuss issues when the issue could be solved with fewer meetings. No employee wants to sit and listen to dilemmas that don’t pertain to them, just to get to the end of the meeting, and hear that nothing is solved.

Having notes kept during meetings is also a good practice. The human mind cannot naturally retain every issue discussed during a meeting. Designating a record keeper to write down important highlights of the meeting to synthesize into a bulleted-point a memo can keep dialogue cohesive. This will cut back discrepancies and keep information fresh on everyone’s mind.

4. Leading by Example

Regardless of your position, or type of organization, good communication requires acknowledging employees’ thoughts and message. When management and executive employees exercise good communication skills the practice will be reciprocated. If you lead by example, you can change the dynamic of a meeting or conversation.

First-time entrepreneurs are most likely still developing their communication habits. Strong leaders and veteran entrepreneurs have refined these skills. Active listening, providing constructive feedback, and answering questions are good habits to maintain in daily conversations with everyone in your organization.

Having a good communication skill-set written into your company culture will help positive communication to endure.  

5. Inspiration & Enrichment

Many sales teams have formal enrichment ‘pep talks.’ Some software developers have recurring discussions to generate team building. Retailers meet to display new products and where they will be placed on the sales floor. No matter the industry, for many tasks it takes a team mentality for everyone to be involved to complete objectives. Not only is your team going to need to be informed through an effective exchange of information they will need inspiration.

Inspiration can come from showing how improvements due to employee diligence and has made quantifiable improvements. What key metrics have improved because of the marketing department?

Recognizing employees’ hard work also goes a long way. This is a sign of a good leader. Blending together the educational information you need to relay to your team combined with some inspiring sentiments is the most impactful way to communicate.

Improved communication is not going happen overnight. Like most things in the workplace, it needs to happen from the top down. Being consistent with how you present yourself displays to other how to improve communication skills at work. Over time, this will lead to others picking up on the traits and an improved company culture.


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