Want to be more successful, better liked by your peers, and produce more value in your business? You need to learn to be a great communicator.
Boosting your communication skills leads to many benefits in both your personal and business life but it goes further than having the gift of the gab. Here are eight practices that will help you communicate better with others.
Great communicators take the time to build up a vast library of knowledge in their particular area of expertise. Don’t be afraid to share your knowledge with others; your peers will be less likely to listen and interact with you if you don’t prove that you know what you’re talking about.
Be a Great Listener
The art of communication is often more about your ability to listen than it is about the amount you talk. Avoid dominating a discussion and, instead, give others the chance to talk. Asking questions will allow others to feel that their contributions are of value.
Remember Your Manners
Before delving into conversation with another person, thank them for their time before you kick off. This immediately put them at ease and assures them of their value. In the same vein, a little praise and appreciation throughout the conversation will help to build a good rapport.
While assertiveness is sometimes needed when attempting to get your point across or when dealing with difficult people, it’s important to remain positive. Confidence combined with clear direction is a much better combination than an aggressive tone and a defensive attitude.
Focus on Understanding
Skilled communicators will ensure that they fully understand what other people are saying to them, continually checking to avoid making assumptions. If you also learn to pay attention to nonverbal communication, you stand to understand the real message.
Develop a Connection
Finding some common ground with another person can help the flow of communication. Showing interest in a person’s family life or individual projects or hobbies can often result in that person becoming more receptive to your goals and needs.
Know Your Desired Outcome
Before you enter into communication with another person, you should be clear about your desired outcome. Understanding the objective of the communication helps to direct the flow of the conversation in the direction you need.
At the end of any communication, establish what you expect to happen next. Clarify any actions that need to be taken by you or the other person and agree deadlines. Such agreements are often done verbally at first but a quick email afterwards to confirm details is always a good idea.
Better Communication is just one of the topics covered in our ICA Master Programme.
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