Take a minute to think about how you communicate, and the results you achieve. I’m often surprised at how people do and don’t communicate with each other. Communication is more than just words spoken orally. It includes body language as well as the ability to compose an email so that it doesn’t sound trite, overbearing, or angry.
These are things I think about daily, as one of my main responsibilities as a trainer is to communicate with others, as well as teach them about communicating.
Below are some tips to communicate better:
When making a request, keep the outcome in mind. Keep emotions at bay. When communicating a problem, come prepared with a case. Managers appreciate employees who do this, as it shows initiative. Therefore, bring information about the problem, but also come prepared with a solution.
Write down the key points you’d like to communicate. This will keep you organized and focused, and prevent you from getting off point and distracted. Check off these points as you cover them.
Make eye contact. Different cultures have different rules for making eye contact during meetings. However, for the most part, making and keeping eye contact assures the person you’re talking to that you’re sincere.
Less is more. You’ve heard this before, and it’s really true. Whether writing or speaking, it isn’t necessary to write what I call ‘filler’ to make a point. Most times, you can get by with fewer words to convey your point. If you feel like you’re running on, you probably are.
Follow up. This is important, and can be as simple as sending a thank you email summarizing key points discussed as well as next steps.
So, How Are You Communicating? Write me and let me know where you have grown in your communicating style or your effectiveness over the last year.