At work, in order to become a more effective communicator, you need to develop three qualities:
Everyone should be able to fully understand what you mean, even if they don't agree with you. Remember that misunderstandings will cause problems. Clarity is your main communication goal.
Being clear about what you mean is the most important thing, but it not the ONLY thing: next is REASON. You should always be able to explain the reasons for what you are saying. Additionally, you should be able to handle conflict according to the principles of reason (And not get too emotional).
Don't say everything: The ability to stop talking when you've already said too much is a rare gift.
You don't need to express out loud, every thought you have.
Have you ever lost your temper and said too much?
Remember that your words have the power to create, AND the power to destroy.
Choose your words carefully.
Let us take a closer look at these three qualities: Clarity, rationality, and self-control, one step at a time:
Clarity in communication
Vague or ambiguous statements will cost you time, money and effort. Clear and specific statements, will SAVE you time, money and effort. How can you improve your clarity?
You can use numbers to improve your clarity. Always try to express yourself using numbers.
Example 1: don't say "Do you take sugar?"
Say "How many sugars do you take?"
Example 2: don't say "Send that over to me, as soon as you can."
Say "Send that over to me by 3PM, today, please".
Numbers are the number 1 best way, to add clarity to your speech!
Use Objective language
Objective language is language of the senses. (That which you; see, touch, taste, smell and hear)
Subjective language is language of judgements, of evaluations and concepts.
It is clearer to use objective, rather than subjective, language.
Saying "I want it printed in primary colours: Reds, greens, and blues" (objective)
Is better than, "I want it printed in exciting colours!" (Subjective)
Saying "As he spoke to me, he was pointing his finger at me," (objective)
Is better than "He was being rude and offensive" (subjective) "He arrived ten minutes early, wearing a light grey suit and blue tie, and greeted me with a smile".
Is better than "He made a good first impression" (Subjective)
Control your body language
You can be saying the right things, but be messing up with your body language.
Here are some of the subsets of body language:
- Posture - don't slouch, sit straight.
- Appearance- you should dress according to the social norms of the group with whom you are trying to win favour.
- Handshake- short duration, firm and dry. (Not: bone-breaker, nor the wet fish, handshake)
- Eye contact- give sufficient eye contact, but without glaring.
- Proximity- don't invade her "personal space". It's too creepy!
- Scent- try to smell nice, or not at all.
Don't leave bad smells around; such as cigarette breath, or coffee breath, etc.
Be aware of your voice tones
People judge your emotional state on the basis of your voice tones. How to improve your voice tones: o Slow down your pace. Don't be a "fast talker".
- Talk at the deep end, the lower end, of your voice register.
- Squeaky, high-pitched voices are not well received because they imply immaturity.
- Vary your tones. Don't be monotone. Monotone voices are dull and boring.
- Variable, modulating voices are livelier and more interesting to listen to.
Your mind creates "self-fulfilling prophecies"; i.e. if you think you will lose, then you probably will.
Your thoughts control your destiny because your thoughts control your actions. But many people don't control their thoughts.
They allow their minds to be filled with:
- Fear thoughts
- Anger thoughts o Revenge thoughts
- Low self-confidence thoughts
To manage your mood, you must CONSCIOUSLY manage your mind.
Managing your own brain is the hardest thing in the world to do, because more than half of your brain thinks it is still living in the Stone Age!
It still wants to bash the other guy over the head, with a rock, and steal his food. BUT, in order to succeed in a complex, western, scientific, multicultural society, governed by law, you must learn to control your own mind.
Because you feel whatever you are thinking about.
At any moment, you FEEL the emotions, that are consistent with the content of your mind.
And because that is true, if you think about the wrong things, for too long, then you will trigger emotional feelings of:
And you'll be left disheartened, stressed and depressed, pining for the return of "the good old days". Look around you, and you will see many people in that category. Over the long stretch, none of the above list of emotional states is any good for you. (Nor for those people who are around you). Take control of your mind and direct all your mental powers towards answering only two questions:
- How, specifically, do you want your future to be better than the present and your past?
- What can YOU can do, to make that vision of a better future really happen?
If you would only agree to turn your mind to answering these two questions, in as great detail as you can, with as much repetition as you can, then you will inspire frequent emotions of:
- Self confidence
Which, emotionally, is a great place to be.
When in conversation with others, put limits on the time you spend asking them about their troubles.
Don't ask them very much about their latest bad luck story, nor their worst defeats. Instead, keep asking variations of the same two questions:
- How specifically do you want your future to be better than your past?
- What can YOU can do make that vision of a better future really happen?
If you did that, then, YOU will be the one who inspires the same list of emotions in those around you. You will inspire feelings of:
- Self confidence
Put this idea into practice and you will be amazed at the results.........
For more information about our communication skills training courses visit the Corporate Coach Group website