Do we ever communicate with another person without there being a need to gain co-operation? I tend to think not.
Let’s unpack that thought a little. When we’re trying to sell or persuade or delegate it’s quite obvious that co-operation is the desired outcome
: “Please agree that this product I’m wanting you to buy will add the value I promise.” “Please see the need for you to come round to my way of thinking.” “Please take on this task and perform it to the best of your ability.” And so on.
It’s less clear when one is simply sharing information, or asking a question or greeting someone. But if we reduce these interactions to their very essence, we are actually wanting the other party to co-operate
: “Please assume that I have the required credibility to share this information.” “Please greet me back in a pleasant manner.” “Please understand what information I need from you to answer my question.” The list goes on.
We communicate with others for myriad reasons, but always with the same agenda – hear me, listen to me, help me, fear me, validate me and many more
Whether we like it or not our success in this world, (even when asking others to not communicate with us), is dependent upon how effectively
we transmit the message.
With that in mind – here are eleven key components
integral to effective communication:
• Talk to
the person – not at them.
• Check to see if they’re in a place where they can take on board
whatever you need to discuss. Their mind may well be on a different priority.
• Enter into a dialogue
rather than a one way monologue.
• Listen with a view to getting them to talk
• Make eye contact
– seems like a no-brainer, but it’s kind of hard to do when you’re multitasking.
• Focus on the conversation at hand
not your electronic devices!
• Be courteous
– there’s never an excuse to be rude
even when you’re giving a negative message.
• Explain yourself clearly
and check the other person heard you correctly
by asking them to paraphrase.
• If you’re stressed/upset/sad/angry/hectically busy
, tell the other person where you’re at so they don’t take your less than happy demeanour personally.
• Be honest but kind
. A little kindness goes a long way.
• Soften your words – please and thank you
cost you nothing except when you omit to use them!
How much time do you spend
clearing up the fall-out resulting from misunderstandings between your team/departments/employees??
At Staff Training we specialise in the art of effective communication
. It’s the bedrock upon which our soft skill competencies rest.
If you’re looking to sharpen your communication skills, we have the workshop for you!
For more info on our Communication Excellence workshop, email us at info@StaffTraining.co.za
or give us a call at 0861 996 660