Category Archives: Communication
Passive: Using passive communication, you tend to give priority to the welfare of others over yours. This results in, you giving the impression to others that you have a very low self image and inferiority complex to yourself. Your verbal communication borders on the softness and your tentative voice gives it an apologetic note. Your body language or non-verbal communication is full of excessive head nodding, stooped posture, avoiding eye contact, and looking down or away as if you are searching, unsuccessfully, for the clues, to advance the conversation in thin air. In business leadership or business communication this style is hardly of any use.
Is this form of communication harmful? Yes, it is. Using passive communication, you do everything in a conversation, but expressing yourself which is the heart of the conversation. It erodes your self-esteem, confidence, and makes you angry at yourself. It earns you pity and disrespect from the others who are part of the relationship.
Aggressive: The antithesis of the passive style expresses, “I am Ok, you are not Ok”. The practitioner of an aggressive communication style is very much aware of what is good for him. However, he or she is not very particular about who gets hurt, while they are achieving it. Verbal communication is loud and is a means of letting others know how superior these people are. Non-verbal communication or body language is aggressive. The clenched tight fist, rigid body posture, and the staring eyes are enough to intimidate the other individual. Adopting this style of communication is a sure shot way of earning anger and disrespect from others.
Assertive: The best among all the types and is very conducive to healthy relationships. You can employ an assertive style from the various other communication styles, to nourish and cement them. Your attitude speaks of the “You are Ok, I am Ok”, approach. You value the rights of the individual you are in a relationship with, but not at the cost of your rights. Your communication bestows importance and equal status to others and signifies emptiness of trampling each other in whatever race you are. “Both of us can win”, is your message to the others, “by fulfilling our part of the bargain”. Communication in the workplace based on this style can lead to effective communication in the workplace which results in productivity.
Relationship Communication Tips
Studies show that boys use communication for the purpose of deciding the pecking order among them. On the other hand girls use communication to intimate and feel close to the people they choose to talk to. Communication is more of a stress buster activity when it comes to girls. Here are some communication tips to overcome barriers in relationships.
Express Yourself: An individual with the emotional thrust behind his personality gets bottled up, if he or she is not allowed express himself or herself. Talk freely, clearly, even at the cost of ridicule or derision.
Clarify Ideas: If your partner’s personality is logically driven, then it means that he or she needs you to clarify some of your ideas.
Differentiate Between Feelings and Behavior: It may be the case that your partner did or said something which hurt you immensely. Your partner’s behavior could be unintentional or it might be that your feeling hurt was more far fetched than what was intended. Try to fathom your feelings for their source. Talk openly about the feelings rather than discussing the behavior.
Assertive and Nagging: A nagging person doesn’t give solutions to a problem which could help a relationship. An assertive personality may solve a problem by sharing relationship advice as a solution with you.
Listening to others is a great skill when it comes to understanding others and makes the least thanked part of the communication. Improving interpersonal communication is the key to an easy and fruitful relationship.
Communication is one of the essential components of the foundation of one’s personality. We need it all the time and we use it everywhere, so it also becomes an important part of our social skills set. For kids and teenagers, some of the most effective ways to learn and master this skill is through the medium of games, activities, and interesting exercises. Through these activities, kids are able to improve their verbal as well as written communication, along with having fun and enjoyment. Interestingly, the games and activities that promote teamwork will automatically improve communication as well, so, it is advisable that the activities be performed in a group rather than by oneself as this promotes fast learning.
The following are certain communication skills activities that will benefit kids and teenagers, and anyone else who uses them, by helping them sharpen their communication skills.
Communication Skills for Children
Make chits of words that are common among the kids and place them in a fishbowl. Next, ask each student to come up and pick out a chit from the bowl and speak for 30 seconds on the word. The sentences should be small and simple in structure in order to avoid any grammatical errors. This exercise is quite similar to an extempore, which helps in developing confidence and face the audience, along with developing communication skills.
Identify the Object
These skills are more effective when performed in a group, so for this you need to have a group of at least five to seven players. Blindfold one of them and make him/her stand in the corner of the room. Keep an object that requires an elaborate description to understand and identify. Next, ask the rest of the students to start describing the features of the object one by one to the kid with the blindfold. He may also ask questions for further clues and identify the object in the set time.
This activity requires two students. Make them stand in a straight line, one behind the other at a distance. Give a blank drawing sheet to the one standing in the front and a sheet with an image drawn using geometrical shapes like a bird, an ice-cream cone, a house, etc. to the kid behind him. Next, ask the kid standing at the back to give instructions to the kid in the front without revealing the identity of the object so that he can draw the image just via the instructions provided.
Communication Skills for Teenagers
Role-play exercises help in developing confidence and refining communication skills, thus making an individual more extroverted. This is one of the best exercises for teens who need to have good command over their oral communication skills. The trainer needs to give a situation to a group of four to five people. The situations can be teleconferencing, dealing with a difficult client, etc. where the actors need to interact and apply verbal communication techniques to communicate effectively.
Written skills are also important in the communication process. To improve this aspect of communication, diary writing can be taken up. It is considered one of the most effective activities that help in improving written skills. Anyone can take up diary writing as there are no rules to write in, kids can just jot down what they feel about the day or any other aspect of their life. In fact, diary writing should be inculcated in their daily routine.
Communication Skills for Workplace
The game starts with the first person whispering a sentence into the ears of the person sitting on his right, who then whispers it into the ears of the person on his right and so on and so forth. The cycle continues till the last person in the circle has been told the sentence, who then has to say the sentence out loud. Once this is done, the original sentence is said out loud by the first person.
Usually, there are several discrepancies between what the original sentence was, and what the final sentence came to be. This activity demonstrates the deconstruction of information caused by ineffective communication.
Body language and eye contact are two very important aspects of effective communication. The activity requires two participants who sit back-to back and converse on a given topic. After the conversation ends, a feedback from the audience is collected to see how this conversation, devoid of any eye contact, was different from a normal conversation. The main aim behind this activity is to explain the importance of eye contact and body language for effective communication.
These activities aim to explain the importance of communication skills and all aspects of the same. Since they have been used in the form of activities, they can be used as simple, enjoyable games that anyone would love to play―and learn through the process.
Effective communication is very crucial in the corporate world today, a prerequisite for success. It ensures that decisions are taken well, and with the consent of all those who are a part of it. The various communication styles don’t only improve the working environment, but it is observed that employees are more productive when communication is practiced. No team can give its best performance, if its members are not performing to the best of their capabilities. One of the main reason for not performing – improper communication. Optimum output is expected from each team, and this is possible only with effective communication in the workplace, between all the levels of hierarchy. Efficient communication will make sure that decisions are taken, taking into consideration view points of the entire team. This will make the decisions complete, and just too. A team which does not communicate effectively, will always experience low levels of employee motivation.
Effective Team Communication Skills
Learn How to Convey
To achieve effective communication, a lot depends on how you eradicate communication barriers, and speak precisely what you need to convey. Conveying what you want, and doing so rightly, holds the most significant key to efficient communication. The management, your team members and colleagues, need to understand exactly what is being said. Their perception of your words, should be how you wanted it to be. And to achieve this, you have to be ‘clear’ when you convey.
Don’t Talk, Speak!
Yet another skill would be learning how to speak. A person who just talks and doesn’t speak sense, is considered a person who doesn’t know, who is unaware. Such a person, cannot lead a team. The team members would never approach him/her when in doubt. Learn to be articulate, have expected answers. Speak with a motive. Hold discussions, and not speeches. A two-sided conversation is an absolute necessity for effective communication to exist.
Be Open to Change
Another important skill required for effective communication, is to be open to change, to alterations and modifications. If you come across as a person who doesn’t bother about the opinions and judgments of other people, no one is going to bother giving them to you. Listening to what other people have to say, and being receptive to change is a must. It is very important to consider and value every person’s opinion in your team.
Effective Team Communication Techniques
Be a Good Listener
Being a good listener is one of the best and most effective communication technique, one that always works. It is very important to listen to people – your colleagues, your juniors especially. Team members will come to you only if they know you are willing to listen. You will understand the importance of communication when you see the positive results it brings about.
Be Patient and Reasonable
Learn to be patient when you are dealing with a team. Let it be deadlines or targets, you cannot reach a conclusion based on assumption. People have issues, and for them to discuss these, they need to feel comfortable. After such discussions, you have rational conclusions at your disposal. Freedom of expression, is the most helpful communication technique. You also need to be reasonable. Every person needs to be tackled and dealt with, in a different way. Do it!
Polls for People
Poll: a questioning or canvassing of persons selected at random or by quota to obtain information or opinions to be analyzed. ~ Merriam Webster
One of the best things to do if you want effective communication in the office, is to hold polls for everything you can. Polls make the people feel that their opinions are taken into consideration and what they have to say matters. After these polls, it is also important to take decisions according to those polls. Proper action needs to be taken, after the polls come out with results.
Effective Team Communication Strategies
Group Meetings & Discussions
If you want to see some effective team communication activities, organize some group meetings and discussions where these can be developed. Meetings, discussions and similar platforms work best when you want to see some communication happening. In these meetings, get to know the team members as a first step, and then start discussing the points you need to. Breaking the ice initially is very important.
Having a small suggestions box in the office is one the best communication strategies that you can develop. Allow people to anonymously put in their suggestions. Keeping it anonymous will help people to be frank about what they feel. Secrecy is sometimes required to keep your dignity and this option will certainly help the cause. This strategy will surely help you go further in achieving the goal of effective communication.
Transparency & Combined Decisions
Transparency is of utmost importance in any team. Everyone in the team should have equal rights and duties, and this should be known to one and all. The basic idea of a team, is where a group of people work towards a common goal and this makes it important for everyone to know what is happening. Similarly, a combined decision will make sure that everyone is an equal part of what is decided.
Now that you know the list of communication skills, strategies and techniques required for effective team communication, inculcate them in your workplace soon. These are not only for workplace communication and offices, but can be developed in various teams such as sports teams and college project teams. Remember, ‘United We Stand, Divided We Fall’! Start communicating today.
Communication is a very crucial part of our lives, especially when it comes to relationships. In order for a relationship to run smoothly, there should be effective communication between both partners. By improving communication skills, you will be able to understand the feelings of the other person clearly and effectively. Understanding the importance will even help you prevent and overcome any misunderstanding between both partners.
Effective Communication Skills in Relationships
There are many things that we mess up just because we miss out on listening to what the other person actually wants to say. This can even happen in a relationship. When communicating with your partner, don’t just hear, but listen carefully. This will enable you to understand what the other person is saying and prepare for a response. While listening, do not interrupt the other person. If you do so, it would naturally show your disinterest in the matter.
Just like careful listening, speaking clearly is also a very significant point when it comes to good communication skills. What you speak has to be balanced with what you have heard. Do not overstate what you want to say and be clear. While speaking, it is always better to consider the other person’s point of view. Do not be rude or one-sided in your talk with your partner, and most importantly, do not criticize.
Understand Body Language
Body language is another essential aspect of good communication in relationships. If you want to reach greater depths in understanding each other, you also need to use body language in your communication. Along with just plain listening and speaking, you also have to include body language as a part of your communication. This includes eye movements, posture, and other facial expressions. Good body language can be used in order to show interest in the communication.
Use the ‘I’ Word Correctly
The ‘I’ word plays a very important role when it comes to clear communication in relationships. Using ‘I’ in your statements gives an impression that what is being said is your point of view, and the views can differ. Instead of using the statement ‘You make me frustrated’, it is a good option to say ‘I don’t like it when this happens’. This makes the conversation less accusatory and makes the other person feel that he is not being totally blamed.
You should communicate in a way that would create a kind of mutual understanding between both partners. The communication should essentially lead to a solution and not more complications in the conflict. In some cases, physical touch can even contribute to good understanding in both partners. For instance, just holding hands while talking can be of great help to pass on the message effectively.
It is also significant to accept that you are wrong if you really are. Learn to appreciate your partner to enhance the quality of your communication. Another good idea is to turn a complaint into a request by saying please and other such words. Instead of shouting ‘You never say goodbye!’, you can just say ‘Can you please say goodbye while going?’.
These are some effective communication skills in relationships that you need to develop. There are many other skills that you would develop over time after following these tips. Remember that being a good communicator with your partner will make the bond stronger.
It is well-known that before you come to work, you have to leave your informal self back home. In the office, you’re an employee, someone who’s supposed to go about his work in a professional manner. There is a way to talk to your superiors, to your peers, and your subordinates. This mode of communication is known as workplace communication and is typically formal and to the point. Skills that qualify as laudable are –
- Courteousness: A person should always be courteous while speaking to anyone in the workplace, whether senior or junior. One should not speak disparagingly with juniors, while speaking in a laudatory way with seniors. Courteousness should be maintained in the workplace irrespective of rank.
- Precision: You’re not supposed to sit and chat in the workplace. Workplace communication facilitates necessity and should be completed as quickly as possible. It mostly consists of delegating tasks and reporting results. So keep it short.
- Language: One should never use any slang terms while at work. Business communication should be crisp and clear so that everyone understands what you’re saying. Slang terms bring in the eventuality of misunderstanding and also look unprofessional. So one should avoid using slang in office.
- Low Speaking Volume: One comes across so many loud-talkers. Perhaps they are naturally so or do so deliberately to drive some point across. But speaking loudly is disturbing to other people around you hence, a low speaking volume should be maintained.
- Clarity: It is also essential to ensure that the person you are speaking with has completely understood what you have to say. Hence, one should speak very slowly and clearly. If you have a strong ethnic accent, you should make sure that you talk slowly so that the other person gets what you have to say. It is always good to ask, “have you understood?” just in case someone doesn’t get what you have to say.
- Listen to Others: Most people think of effective communication as a one-way thing. But it is very important to also be a good listener and not just a good talker. Others too often have something to say or to contribute to a discussion hence, listening too, is one of the effective communication skills at work.
- Posture and Body Language: They say actions speak louder than words and the same can be considered to be true at the workplace. The body has a language of its own too, and at the workplace, the body ought to be courteous. There are simple things to keep in mind, whether it is wishing everyone ‘good morning’ at work, or having a courteous smile on your face, being well-dressed in office, or sitting erect when someone is talking to you.
Modern methods allow the least use of the written mode of communication (less than before). Today, we use emails, service forms, report sheets, and the occasional sticky note. Your skills should extend to this area as well. Do not drone on about things in your emails. In fact, an email is the perfect excuse to make it short, simple, quick, and effective. While filling reports on any projects or for employee appraisals, keep the language clean and simple. It reflects on as you as someone who is hardworking and prompt.
If one understands the significance or importance of something, then I feel that they do that thing better. So instead of just dishing out all the important communication skills, I feel it is equally important for people to understand, what is the big deal about it! It is important to be formal and cordial in the workplace for several reasons. Firstly, you are viewed by everyone in the office as someone who has a positive influence in the workplace. Such people are always desired by companies. Secondly, you learn to get your point across effectively and ensure that the work is done the way it should be. And thirdly, (I’m being a bit informal here) it makes you look like a team player and makes you more loved by the company overall!
So this was all about the communication skills and their importance. Now you know how to communicate effectively in the workplace and why. So get on with the job!
Scientifically, effective communication is described as a two-way process where the information or idea expressed by the speaker is well received by the listener. However, we often find that people mumble and jumble when it comes to conversation. One of the major reasons for this is because of the difference in written and spoken language. Secondly, if that language is not our mother tongue, we have difficulty in speaking in it, due to lack of confidence. If you too are stuck in a similar situation, then here is a guide to it which will be helpful to you.
Ways to Improve Oral Communication
One of the basic principles you need to keep in mind is, the more you are into the language, more proficient you will be in it. Reading, listening, speaking it all the time is the best way in learning the language fluently and improving your communication skills. Now, if you are fluent in writing the language, try to gain confidence for speaking it. Here are a few simple yet most efficient rules that will help you know how to improve oral communication skills in English.
Reading is undoubtedly the best way of improving your vocabulary, and keeping in touch with the language. Reading aloud will help in improving accent and pronunciation of words. Talking of accent, you should remember to develop and use only one accent and not mix up. For e.g., learn the British or American accent and always speak in the similar one. Secondly, if you come across new words and phrases, look for their meanings and usage in a sentence. Now memorize these words and try to use them while speaking. This will not only make your language rich, but will also create a good impression on the listeners.
You need to listen to native speakers in order to improve your pronunciation and accent. If English is not your mother tongue, you should try to listen to the way English speakers speak. You can even watch English language movies, or listen to songs (without the captions) and try to follow it. Mark the different words and try to pronounce them like the native speakers pronounce. Write down the sentences and try to speak them just like you hear them. There are also several voice and accent software available in the market which can be useful.
Now lastly, the most important method is to actually speak. Try to find a native speaker with whom you can practice. Try to communicate in English with the person, even if you make grammatical errors. Do not hesitate if the person points out your faults; you should remember that practice makes a man perfect. Conversing on a daily basis will also improve your confidence. If speaking with a native speaker is not possible, you can form groups with people trying to improve their oral communication, take a topic and speak on it. Doing this every day will boost your confidence and also enrich your language skills.
Tips to Improve Communication Skills
Apart from the above mentioned methods, following are some tips to improve your communication skills:
- You should speak loudly and clearly. Talking very slowly and in an inaudible voice is the biggest hindrance in communication.
- Talking hurriedly, covering your mouth while speaking, and talking in non-understandable accent leads to failed communication.
- The intonation and tempo of your speech is also important. Try to raise or lower your voice when emphasizing some word.
- It is wise to have your speech short and concise. Beating around the bush will lead to failed communication.
- In order to have a free flow of communication, you need to make use of different words. However, it is perfectly normal to use simple words to convey your thought or idea to the listener. You do not always need to use rich and extensive vocabulary.
- Lastly, another important tip is to use proper body language and facial gestures. Using hands, and nodding the head also helps in transmitting a lot of information.
Following these simple methods will surely boost your confidence and help you to converse effortlessly. So, motivate yourself and get going, you will definitely succeed! Good luck!
Communication is a part and parcel of everyday life. We cannot not communicate. It is one of the most essential and integral part of our existence, and the absence of communication can lead to many problems and misunderstandings. In order to have an effective dialog, it is necessary that effective communication skills be developed. Communication can be divided into verbal and non verbal. Verbal communication means any communication that involves spoken words or sounds. Non verbal communication includes any communication that does not use oratory media for communication. Written communication comes under non verbal communication. Having good written communication skills is a pre requisite for almost everyone today. Read ahead on how you too can enhance your skills and reap the benefits.
Importance of Written Communication
Written communication involves the use of written words to send a message from one point to another. Given below are some points highlighting the importance of written communication in day-to-day life.
- Written communication is important for any business entity to carry out the daily business activities.
- It helps in maintaining records of business transactions.
- Written communication like brochures and catalogs help companies to showcase their products effectively.
- Print advertisements help to market products.
- Contracts, inter departmental memos and notices, emails and other such intra-organizational communication serve as a permanent record of the business communication that takes place.
- Written documents can serve as evidence in a court of law if and when required.
- Written words are believed more than spoken words. It’s just human psychology to believe something that we see in writing (even if it may be false) than something someone says (which may very well be true!)
- Personal written communication like letters, emails, post cards, greeting cards, etc., have their own charm and special meaning to the ones sending and receiving them.
How to Improve Written Communication Skills
The importance of effective written communication skills cannot be stressed enough. Written communication plays a major role, especially in the corporate world. Hence, it is doubly important to have good written communication skills in the workplace. Business writing or any other form of written communication can be very simple for those who follow the guidelines that are given below.
Audience: Keep your audience/reader in mind before you begin writing the piece. The audience is mainly what determines the content to be written. Once you have an idea about who is the intended audience, you can judge for yourself what other necessary steps need to be taken to ensure the completion of the communication cycle, which is, after all, the intention of any piece of communication.
Information: The basics of communication should be covered in your piece of written communication. The 5 Ws and 1 H – Who, What, Where, When, Why and How (either completely or at least the ones that need to be) should be in your piece. This is basically almost the entire information that you wish to give the reader. How ever you present the data, these points need to covered, only then is it an effective way of communication.
Tone: Deciding the tone of your communication depends on the audience to a large extent. You must be able to gauge what kind of tone you should use to ensure maximum comprehension and retention by your audience. For instance, you cannot use a condescending tone with a person who is at a higher post than you at work. Nor can you use an arrogant tone for something that is meant to reach a large number of people at one time. Another instance, is letter writing. If you’re writing a letter to a customer to remind him (for the third time) to pay his bills, your tone will be slightly more stern than the first or second letter of notice that you must have written to him. Tones can vary from casual, semi formal to formal, depending on who you’re communicating with and what you intend to communicate.
Language: This forms one of the major chunks of written communication that one needs to develop. This does not mean that you need to have a flair for writing. It simply means that you must be well versed with the fundamentals of the language. These include grammar, spellings, figures of speech, parts of speech, punctuation, etc. Following the basics of the language is more than enough to be a decent writer. Of course, this is just the case with formal writing. In the case of creative writing like copywriting for ads or storytelling in any form, it is essential that along with the basics, you must possess a flair for writing and a creative sense as well.
Length: Knowing when to stop applies to written communication as well. You can’t just keep rambling on and on, when not required. The beauty of effective written communication can be seen in its presentation. How well and how concisely you manage to accommodate all the information that you need to give is what shows how proficient your written communication is. The key, as the old adage goes, is to be ‘clear, concise and correct’. But this does not necessarily mean that you cut short on something that requires to be explained in detail. So, in short, you must be able to estimate how much you need to write about something. And, if you feel something’s getting too long, break it up into parts. This makes it easier for you as well as the reader.
These were some pointers on how you can improve your written communication skills. These are just basic guidelines and writing tips which need to be paid attention to. There are many more intricacies involved in every style of writing, which can be mastered only with in-depth study and regular practice.
Good communication skills empower an individual to inspire and influence others in order to reach the desired outcome, no matter how difficult the situation may appear to be. An individual with these skills not just has an edge over his/her fellow colleagues/friends/acquaintances etc., but also carries out his/her job with a lot of confidence, ease, and perfection. These skills combined with appropriate body language, can help anyone in leaving a mark behind with each interaction he/she has. This article discusses developing effective team communication skills in people.
Most organizations, now, work on different projects simultaneously with separate teams allocated to each project. Depending on the project size and scope, they can be small or large. Irrespective of the number of employees in a team, it is essential that every member understands and shares relevant information related to the project. It is also important that they have a clear picture of their roles and responsibilities with respect to the project, and deliver accordingly. Thus, in order to ensure a successful project execution, it is important that the members share a healthy relationship based on trust, confidence, and mutual understanding. All this is possible only when a team develops and practices effective communication skills.
How to Develop?
Developing such skills within the team can be done easily by imbibing some basic manners, professional etiquette, and keeping an open mind.
Follow the tips given below and start practicing them:
- Always respect all your fellow members, irrespective of whether you are just a member or a leader.
- Ensure whether all the members understand the project requirements thoroughly and know what the project targets are. Ask questions or have discussions to clarify the same.
- Organize regular meetings to understand the doubts and queries of every member, and provide solutions accordingly.
- Keep every member informed with the latest project updates or project issues.
- Define the role and responsibility of every member clearly to avoid confusion or unnecessary re-work.
- When in a meeting or discussion, let every one have their turn to speak and suggest. It is of no use if you alone keep talking and ignore what others have to say.
- Listen to others’ opinions and use their suggestions if found to be effective. Listening plays a significant role. Repeat others’ words to acknowledge their point of views.
- Ask for feedback and suggestions.
- Always speak in a clear and slow manner. Give sound and logical reasoning to your opinions.
- Always be polite in your way of speaking and behavior. Using rude tone or body language may bring upon negative feelings among the members.
- Clear out personal differences and misunderstandings by speaking it out with the concerned person. Keeping it inside and harboring grudges against one another may affect the spirit and have a direct impact on the quality of your work.
- Make appropriate use of emails, telephones, voice messages, and instant messengers while communicating with the fellow members. Follow the professional etiquette while writing emails, greeting over telephones, leaving voicemail, and sending instant messages. These modes of communication also have a lot of importance in today’s work place.
- Avoid using unpleasant words, expressions, giving out sensitive and confidential information while using the above modes of communication.
- Display acknowledgement and appreciation through face to face interaction or electronic modes when someone performs well. Just a pat on the back, a warm handshake, or two lines of an appreciation mail can have a great impact to motivate.
- When appreciated or praised, thank the person in a polite and sophisticated manner. Avoid continuous rejoicing about your personal success. This might create an uncomfortable situation for your other members.
- Always have a friendly attitude towards each other. Help others in need, and you will get back others’ help when you require the same.
- Deal with tense situations with a calm mind. If anyone’s words make you angry, try to keep a cool head and put your point forward. Avoid using harsh words in return.
- Avoid blaming others continuously when any work is not done. Instead, try to find out the root cause and see to it that it is not repeated in future.
Always try to find out if any member is facing any problem and have a discussion with him/her to address the issue. Speaking and constant interaction with each other always helps in developing a healthy spirit.
The communication process conducted through spoken words is referred to as oral communication. In the ‘University of Virginia, Oral Communication Competency Report’, oral communication is defined as the effective interpretation, composition, and presentation of information, ideas, and values to a specific audience. In today’s world, the emergence of different forms of media has led to the communication process to take place through different channels like telephones, teleconferences, video conferences, etc. Earlier, face-to-face meetings and speeches were the only forms of communication. Understanding and incorporating different workplace communication skills has become highly important to succeed in today’s professional life. Effective listening in the workplace is as important as conveying your thoughts while speaking. So, let us find what are some skills you need to develop for the communication to be effective.
General Communication Skills
The list of communication skills presented below should be helpful in developing proper communication in business, for presentations and also in general.
- Pronouncing the words clearly is an important thing to be remembered. The need to repeat a particular word/sentence affects the flow of presentation.
- To emphasize the importance of a particular thought, words have to be pronounced by changing their tones.
- Avoiding fillers while speaking is necessary. The sound of fillers (‘um’, ‘ah’, etc.) could be irritating for listeners.
- While in a face-to-face communication process, interrupting the speaker is considered a sign of poor communication.
- Careful listening is as important as speaking clearly while in the process of oral communication. It helps respond in a proper manner.
- One should always make an eye contact with the listeners; this way, the attention of listeners is not lost and their interest is kept intact.
- Asking questions in order to obtain information is one of the important aspects. One should keep the questions precise in order to get a clear answer. Same is the case when a person has to answer a question. Answering the question with correct details and also in quick time is of great importance.
- It is not advisable to carry on the communication process without understanding a particular point.
- In a communication process, body language of a person is considered as important as the spoken words. Body language of the speaker has a great impact on the listener(s). This is because it gives them an idea or indication of the direction in which the communication process is heading. The listener either gets positively or negatively influenced by the body language of the speaker.
Oral Communication Skills in the Workplace
Workplace communication is that of a formal nature and requires a person to present his thoughts in a precise and concise manner. The quality of speaking in a precise manner proves to be helpful in a telephonic conversation. An interviewer should be capable of retrieving necessary information from the interviewee.
Skills Required for Oral Presentation
For a good oral presentation, the quality of text and the way it is presented are equally important. An organized text presentation allows the orator to proceed smoothly from point-to-point. Presenting relevant information through a presentation is an important point to be kept in mind. Elaborating on this very core of the presentation is acceptable; however, you shouldn’t wander away from the topic of importance. Your speech should be interactive in nature. The audience shouldn’t feel that the presentation being made is just an activity of reading out a piece of dry, textual information. Understanding the nature of corporate communication should help the working professionals in communicating with their colleagues in a better manner.
Different Settings for Oral Communication
Interpersonal communication is one of the best ways to start with the process of developing your communication skills. You can speak freely and without getting tensed when you just have to speak to a single person at a time. Through interpersonal communication, a person learns how to phrase his/her ideas clearly and also listen to others carefully.
Group discussion exercises play an important role in developing the communication skills. People get to know each others’ views and thoughts through such exercises. More importantly, discussing on a particular topic compels the participants to listen to each other carefully. Group discussion exercises can be used both at school/college level and professional level.
Speaking in front of a large audience for many of us, is quite difficult. It is okay to feel nervous in front of a large audience. However, you can overcome the fear of public speaking completely by making presentations on a regular basis. This form of oral communication is very different from interpersonal communication. Here, you must speak precisely and present the topic in a concise manner. Holding the attention of listeners is the key to become a proficient public speaker.
It is necessary to develop oral communication skills in order to survive in today’s information-oriented world. Dissemination of information can be conducted in a proper manner only if you possess good communication skills. Individual and business relations can be developed and maintained with the use of these skills.
The activity of improving communication skills plays an important role in the process of personality development. You are able to effectively present our opinion through proper communication. Effective communication is a process of speaking and listening carefully, so that one doesn’t miss out on important messages and cues being communicated. These skills listed below are required for effective interpersonal communication and also for speaking properly in a group.
Effective Communication Skills
The list of communication skills presented below, should be helpful in interacting with people in an effective manner.
- Staying focused while communicating is very important. Concentrating hard should help in catching the speaker’s views and responding to them with ease. It can be irritating for a speaker to repeat his words again and again; careful listening is therefore, as important as proper speaking. Proceeding further without listening correctly is even more dangerous. It is therefore, necessary to maintain high concentration levels in order to communicate in a proper manner.
- Developing effective listening skills is as important as speaking in the communication process. Good listeners don’t have to spend much time in understanding what the other person has to say. They are capable of responding precisely since the whole thing is understood quickly. Feedback offered by good listeners reduces the effort of speakers to elaborate on points to be communicated.
- Making an eye contact while speaking and listening is a way to assure the speaker that you are following the communication process interestedly. Looking away from the speaker or not just concentrating properly would exhibit your poor communication skills.
- Body language should be given as much importance as verbal communication. It is one of the important elements in the list of interpersonal skills. An open stance indicates that a person is interested in communicating. If the arms are kept crossed and shoulders placed in a hunched position, it suggests that the person is not interested in communicating.
- Attitude of the speaker also holds great importance in the communication process. Listening to the speaker patiently and then keeping forth your views should be the right thing to do. The attempt should not be that of winning over an argument however, understanding the subject being discussed.
- Speaking clearly is an important thing to keep in mind. Merely pronouncing the words clearly is not enough. The listener should be able to understand your views/thoughts clearly. Any kind of ambiguity can lead to confusion.
- You should not use harsh language even if you find the speaker’s views conflicting with that of yours. Disagreeing or displaying your disapproval about a certain conflict in a polite manner is always possible. Once again, patience is the key to handle such type of situations.
- Keeping an open mind helps in understanding the thoughts of others without getting into conflict-mode. Objective analysis of a particular statement helps in preventing arguments and carrying on with the communication process.
- Explaining a particular concept to an audience requires you to be aware of the level of understanding of listeners. For the communication process to be fruitful, the plane of thinking of audience and speaker should be the same.
- There are instances when you need to repeat your statement or message to the listeners without getting irritated. Keeping your head and staying patient is the key to maintaining the communication process hurdle-free.
- Making your communication process creative is possible with a little bit of effort. For example, the leaders of two teams in an organization may have conflicting views. However, expressing them tacitly/creatively should keep them from using a negative tone while presenting their viewpoints.
- We often make mistakes while speaking/listening (not concentrating enough) and thereby, respond in a wrong way. You should always learn from the mistakes you have made in the past. This approach helps in culling the errors one-by-one and thereby, improving the communication process.
Tips to Improve Communication
The skills provided in the form of effective communication tips should prove to be useful.
Addressing people by their name is one of the skills you should try to master.
Staying polite and behaving in a controlled manner while speaking though is important, the fact that one should remain assertive must not be forgotten.
It is not always possible to receive a feedback that is pleasant or which is in line with your opinions. Accepting the differences in opinion is therefore, an important skill which needs to be mastered. It takes time to develop this skill however, is worth the effort.
The list of communication skills presented through this article presents before readers the different aspects of effective communication. The subject being vast and complicated in nature, it is not possible to address all the related topics. This write-up however, enlists some of the important points.