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Communication Skills

Communication skills

Improve your use of language

Some say "Judge not, lest you be judged".

But the truth is, you will be judged by others.

People must make judgements about you:

  • Whether to believe you or not
  • Whether to treat you well or not
  • Whether to give you the position or not

So prepare to be judged.
Do everything you can to help them make a decision that is good for you and your family.

Here is the truth:
People make judgements based on the evidence of their senses:

They go on what they:

  • See
  • Hear
  • Feel
  • (And smell)

We call this the other persons "Impression" of you.

Their impression of you could be:

  • Good
  • Bad
  • Indifferent

You want to make good impressions: therefore you should practice the art of impression management.
This blog article is about your use of language in the marketplace:
Later blogs will discuss body language and voice tone. This blog is about your use of words.

Here are four notes for you to consider.
Notes on your use of language.

1. Don't talk too much

Don't tell people

  • How sick you have been
  • How badly you have been treated by another
  • All your troubles
  • Don't bombard them with stories of your aches and pains, upsets and injustices.

Don't self-depreciate

For example: avoid saying things like:
"I've got the world's worst memory for names!"

Don't run yourself down- even as a joke.

For example "I used to be indecisive, but now I not so sure!"
This type of talking instils doubt in the mind of the listener.

  • If you go on about your bad luck- maybe you are not good to have around.
  • If you go on about your ill health- maybe you are contagious.
  • If you bad mouth your last boss- maybe you will bad mouth me.
  • If you tell me you have a poor memory- maybe you will forget what I tell you.

2. Limit what you say to positive things

Instead talk about the things that you can do and will do.

Prepared yourself to be ready to talk about:

  • Your strengths
  • Your creativity
  • Your resourcefulness
  • Your ambitions for the future
  • Your ability to add value to their organisation

Let people feel you are a force for good.

  • A source of solutions.
  • A great person to have around.
  • An asset.

3. Keep to the point

In normal conversation you can drift from one subject to another and end up way off track.
In a business context, however, train yourself to stick to the point and focus on one thing at a time.
Fragmented, wandering conversations are a fruitless waste of time.
Countless hours are wasted every day in businesses all over the country, in poorly conducted meetings.

Don't ramble on about related but useless details.
Answer the question they ask and then stop.

4. Distinguish between being funny and being silly

Humour is an important asset.
You should develop a ready humour and a keen wit.

  • But do not confuse witty with silly
  • Enjoy a joke- but don't become a joker
  • Laugh but don't become laughable

Remember that the "court jester" is NOT the same person as the King or queen.
Nobody would trust a clown with an important project.
Display a sense of humour BUT do not overplay it or you will seem silly, stupid, and inane.

Be witty but don't be a clown.
Strive to be a serious contender but with a sense of humour.

Visit the Corporate Coach Group website for more information on effective communication skills.

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