22 Apr Back to Communication Basics!
Today’s world has proved to be ever changing and yet ever resilient. As humans we have the unique ability to learn and adapt. We have used this ability to navigate the ongoing changes in the way we communicate. If you were to take a step back and look at the past 100 or even 50 years you would see this amazing evolution of the way in which we communicate, think about it, can you even remember a life without a cellphone? Even though the way we communicate has changed drastically and continues to change, there are communications basics that continue to remain the same. Today we take a look into these basics and why they remain critical, particularly in the success of your business.
Communication and the idea of how to effectively communicate differs from one person to the next but there are some key elements that align across everyone which we can focus on to help us grow this valuable interpersonal skill.
One of the key pillars in effective communication is the ability to listen. Listening, however, is more than just simply hearing the words of the person who is talking but rather truly trying to understand what they are saying so they feel valued and heard. Ways to improve active listening are:
- Pay attention
- Avoid interruption
- Avoid focusing or thinking about a response
- Repeat their words in your head to help retain and absorb what they are saying
- Watch their body language
- Don’t avoid people you disagree with
- Practice simple manners and courtesies
NONVERBAL QUES & BODY LANGUAGE
One of the most important pillars is nonverbal cues and body language. Even if you are practicing active listening, you may be able to pick up on new levels of understanding by recognizing and deciphering these cues. Eye movement and contact, stance, posture, facial expressions, fidgeting and other body language can sometimes give clues to the speaker and listener alike. If the tone of a speaker’s voice is calm but his facial expression or posture is tense, the message can be confusing to the listener. Conversely, a listener who fidgets or does not make eye contact can give the speaker the impression that the listener is bored or not paying attention (4). It is important to note these cues when trying to effectively communicate and keep in mind even though body language can only be seen face to face there are several other cues that can be gathered through a phone conversation. Try to listen for sighs, distractions and changing tones (5).
CHOOSE THE RIGHT COMMUNICATION METHOD
Now a days there are a million ways to communicate, phone, email, text, zoom, skype, written mail, voice recordings and so on. It is important that you focus on the communication method best suited for your message (4). Understand where your communication strength lies, are you articulate when you speak, then always try to talk to a person live. On the flip side if you find you are a better writer try to start your communication in the written form. The method in which you prefer may not always be met so learning how to eloquent across the board will make you more effective.
The way in which you respond to communications also matters. For example, try asking open-ended questions. This means asking questions that will not yield a yes or no response but rather a response that will allow both the speaker and listener to further the conversation. This will help further the understanding of the message that is trying to be communicated.
DON’T TAKE BUSINESS COMMUNICATION PERSONAL
We wanted to include this under communication basics because it is a critical mindset derived from communication that often gets forgotten. Whether you encounter a disagreement or rejection it is important to remember that it is not personal or a reflection of you as an individual but rather that the business proposition was not a good fit. Understanding and bracing what can feel like negative communication in a positive way will allow you to have a more effective response potentially leading to a different result in the future.
Here at FITTEAM we encourage personal leadership development because we understand how becoming the best version of yourself helps you succeed in every aspect of your life. If you are looking for a community to support and encourage your personal growth we suggest checking out our FITTEAM community at Facebook.com/fitteamglobal.