Effective communication skills are vital to success in many aspects of life. Some of these include: delivering professional presentations to an audience, or preparing for job interviews. You need strong communication skills to build your personal brand and grow your professional business. Good leaders are also great communicators, and it takes time to master these skills. Practice and learn how to improve your relations with others by following these five habits of an effective communicator!
“The biggest communication problem is we do not listen to understand.
We listen to reply.”
Top 5 Communication Practices
1. Behavior –
Your behavior is the most important determining factor of your communication. If your attitude is positive, caring, and accepting, you will be able to engage with your audience and maintain their attention. It is also important to be honest and let your actions speak louder than your words. If you promise to carry out a specific task that you back out of on a last minute basis, you could lose your credibility, and get into huge unwanted trouble if not dealt with sooner. A good rule of thumb is to delay your communication or promises until you are certain you can perform an action completely.
2. Listen –
Listening to what other’s have to say is not only a polite gesture, it also earns their trust and respect. If you take the time to truly listen to others without interruption, they gain the confidence to confide in you. You establish a stronger connection with others when you develop the ability to not only hear them- but to listen to them. Listening includes more than just hearing the words being spoken. You can pick up non-verbal messages by observing how those words are delivered. Clear your mind of any distracting thoughts to focus on the message being conveyed. If something is unclear or confusing to you, it is wise to wait until after the person has finished speaking to ask for questions of clarification.
3. Simplicity –
Customers and employee’s are constantly being bombarded with information in their busy work environment. To ease their tension, try to address them in a relaxed, confident manner. Speak with simplicity. They will appreciate having a conversation that does not focus primarily on technical business jargon. Effective communicators are able to elicit complex, strategic thoughts into simple words that are just as meaningful. Simplicity can be a powerful and necessary means of communication.
4. Encourage –
Encouragement plays a huge role in effective communication. Encourage participation, words of inspiration, as well as praise to others. You can make them feel valued, welcomed, and appreciated with your communications. Others are more likely to give it their best if you make them feel this way, and you encourage involvement and interaction with open-ended questions.
5. Relate –
Being a successful leader means getting to know your employees on a personal level. This could also include customers and other business partners! Informally engage with them, ask questions, and show interest. Then be willing to share personal stories of your own! You will effectively form more friendships and grow your followers! Being relatable is a strategy that allows you to be a memorable communicator. Reach out with empathy to gain more insight, and change the way you communicate with others!
Strong communication skills is important to success in many areas of your life. Engage with your audience by using positive behavior and the correct listening skills. Deliver your communications with simplicity and encouragement while being a relatable business professional. Be sure to focus on the meaning of what you want to communicate and your message will be understood clearly.
What are some communication practices you have used to improve your leadership skills? Can you add to my list? Please comment.
Image Credit: Amanda Rita