Basic Communication skills are a skill that everyone can learn. It is like riding a bicycle or typing. According to Brian Tracy, ‘If you are willing to work at it, you can rapidly improve the quality of every part of your life’.
Have you ever wondered how old is this communication system? No! It is as old as the evolution of mankind. But, if we compare it to our present communication it is not the most effective way of communication. Effective communication skills are important for organizations to grow these days. It is important in our social life as well as workplace to get our ideas across to our clients and colleagues. Some important tips of improving communication skills can be listed as:
Listen more, talk less
- It is a two way process, in which both the speaker and the listener need to be actively involved.
- Everyone wants to be heard. To be an effective listener you need to maintain an eye- contact with the speaker, do not judge them and be patient.
- Do not have a divided attention.
- It is important that you decode and interpret the message the same manner the speaker wants you to. For this you should try to put yourself in their position and understand them.
- Ask questions to the speaker to ensure that you have understood them.
- Remove all distractions and do not let anyone interrupt you.
- Give the speaker sufficient time to explain them, and do not interrupt until they invite you or take a pause.
- Make a few notes so that you can use it later.
- Every gesture we do has a different meaning in different cultures. It is important to make a note for the cultural differences if travelling to a different nation.
- Always smile when you meet new people as it makes you attractive and trustworthy, alone with improving your health and stress levels.
- Always offer firm handshake, as it is a symbol of confidence.
- Do not keep your hands folded against your chest as it shows disinterest.
- Use power poses to reduce stress levels and increase testosterone levels. This will make you feel more confident and powerful.
- While meeting people avoid keeping hands in pockets.
- Dress appropriately for the situation. Avoid ill-fitted dresses, as they will make you feel down.
- You should avoid scratching your neck, nose or eyebrows. Fidgeting is a sign of anxiety and nervousness and shows lack of confidence in us.
7C’s of effective communication
- Completeness- we should try to provide all the information which is required along with some extra information.
- Conciseness- the message should be able to convey the thoughts using fewest words with all relevant information.
- Consideration- always keep in mind the target group for which the message is being written.
- Concreteness- the message should be specific for a particular audience, not general.
- Clarity- the message should be clear and reader should be able to understand it easily. Use familiar and easy words for this.
- Courtesy- we should not only be aware of the perspective of others, but also their feeling. Be polite in your message for it to be effective.
- Correctness- the message should not contain any grammatical or vocabulary errors. The facts and figures used should be accurate.
Picking the right medium
- It is important to select the right medium of communicating a message.
- Serious conversations like layoffs, changes in salary, etc. should be done in person.
- If you wish to speak to a person who is very busy, you should convey your message through email and take appointment.
- If making a telephonic call or video call, ensure that there is no disturbance in the connection as well as you do not have any distractions.
- Give feedback to your employees through emails or phone calls on regular basis.
- Ask for your feedback from your sub-ordinates and colleagues.
- It will enhance productivity and help in identifying the problems.
- It will be helpful in creating a healthy environment in the organization along with motivating the employees.
These are a few ways which can help you in enhancing your communication skills. These tips of effective commnication can help us perceive the world and work miracles, and change our lives.