Effective communication has always been an important skill to be mastered in the workplace. The workplace is filled with much more fun when we can freely discuss on a variety of ideas and our counterpart can effectively comprehend what is being discussed.
Obviously, there will be an atmosphere filled with great air, a feeling of ease and the drive to explore various options towards the achievement of organizational objectives.
This can be achieved through an important skill needed for success in every organization. It is effective communication. In my previous article which you can read HERE, I very much explained what you stand to benefit from developing this skill.
As a young professional, new employee or a graduate with little or no experience, communicating effectively with colleagues or stakeholders can become a difficult task if not effectively managed. In this article, I will explain ways to help you communicate effectively.
Listen and Ask
It can be so difficult to accurately absorb information if you fail to listen. Active listening is often times confused to mean hearing but they are very different. Listening entails much more focus than hearing.
This simply means that when your supervisor, manager, boss or client gives you an instruction, pay full attention and do not interject. Afterward, I suggest you rephrase the instructions to him or her as a question to confirm your instructions.
You just want to be sure that you have not left out any details no matter how minute. Use catch phrases like: “I believe what you are saying is……?”, “Is this what you mean?…” and so on. It is simply a form of feedback.
According to Lawrence Robinson, Jeanne Segal, Ph. D., and Melinda Smith, M.A.
“The left side of the brain contains the primary processing centers for both speech comprehension and emotions. Since the left side of the brain is connected to the right side of the body, favoring your right ear can help you better detect the emotional nuances of what someone is saying.
Try keeping your posture straight, your chin down, and tilting your right ear towards the speaker—this will make it easier to pick up on the higher frequencies of human speech that contain the emotional content of what’s being said.”
If you feel you should use your left ear instead, it is entirely up to you so long as you feel comfortable and you get the accurate information.
Scribble on your notepad
If you ever noticed that you tend to get things mixed up sometimes, then it is suggested that you should almost immediately after listening to instructions, write them down on a notepad. There is no need to feel ashamed of this, there are several reasons why you may forget once in awhile which could include stress.
You may also read this article: Why do I forget things easily to have more insight if it helps.
Whether you forget easily or not, I strongly recommend that you write out your instructions preferably in a summary, at least for record purposes and by the way it works for me too. Just, in any event, you need to remind yourself right?
Email/ Letters/ Document Habit
Before you send out an email, have a senior colleague look through it. Effective communication affects external stakeholders. The way you write sends out a message and a tone, so it is really helpful to have someone who has more experience proofread your initial draft, as well as restructure it to meet up with your company’s policy.
Asides that, you are working towards professional and career growth so you need the right direction.
Company Languages/ Policies
Just as I earlier discussed, every company has a policy and their preferred choice of words or terms. It is then important for you to familiarize yourself with these and become acquainted with them. This will help you communicate effectively with coworkers, clients, customers and improve you as an individual.
Show interest in what is being said. This is applicable whether towards colleagues or stakeholders. Show involvement in what is being communicated to you. Smile, nod or use small verbal comments like “yes”, “okay”, “uh uh” and so on.
Use simple words
It is important for you to use simple words while communicating. More so, depending on your location, you should be considerate of others who possibly had to learn that language as a second language. To effectively communicate, you want to be understood, so use simpler words that relay your message.
Make New Friends
If you had to change your location in the pursuit of your career then it will be advisable to make new friends who have lived in that area for a long time. This is because as you continually speak and chat with them you will become familiar with words used within the community.
Depending on your location, use of words may vary and the meaning may be lost if you do not keep that in mind resulting to misunderstanding. So learn through practice and know words that may be vulgar or otherwise in that new environment because it will help you communicate effectively in the long run.
Pay attention to non-verbal signals like body language, facial expressions, gestures, posture, voice tone, and so on from your part and from the end of your listener(s). Also become aware of individual differences which may be due to age, gender, religion, culture.
If you are communicating with a team (group members), then take note of everyone’s nonverbal signal, relax, breath in and out, try to speak clearly with simple words and use your own body language to portray positive feelings.
Believe in Yourself
Can you really communicate effectively when you are not even sure about what you are saying? It is all about positive psychology. If you are discussing a controversial issue, be sure to have done your research ahead of time. Be prepared for any eventuality.
Even if you are a new graduate who hasn’t started working yet, do remember that you will need to communicate effectively to pass through your interview stage. So I hope that you find these tips useful as well.
If you have any other suggestion not listed, please feel free to leave a comment or suggestion. Don’t forget to subscribe to the blog to get updated on recent posts.