Communication in the workplace is critical for success. It’s critical for you, for the team and the business. It goes without saying that teams work better with clear and consistent communication. Plus it’s your ability to communicate well that is really going to impact your own personal success.
So let’s take a look at some communication techniques that are going to supercharge your success.
Improve communication by being available
The best way you can open up communication avenues is by being available. Stop for a moment and think about a boss you had in the past that was always available to you. They were willing to jump in, talk, give you advice and help you deal with the issue at hand simply by listening to you. Then, compare to a co-worker who shut your door and didn’t respond to your email for 4 days. Which one creates a better workplace culture?
Improve communication by being friendly
Focus on being positive. Watch how much you deflect responsibility, pass blame and don’t take ownership of the things that are happening in your work environment. Focus on having a proactive response. Do you have a resting bitch face? Focus on having warm eyes and a smiling face. Have a warm disposition. When you have a friendly and engaging attitude, people will naturally gravitate towards you. They will see you as approachable and naturally open up to you. Simply smiling means you are no threat. People will see you’re not angry or a threat to them and feel safe to connect with you.
Improve communication by being a good listener
Communication is not just about conveying your own information. It’s about being a good listener and really understanding what it is someone is trying to convey to you as well. There is definitely a difference between hearing and listening. When you practice active listening skills, you are in a better position to decipher what someone is saying to you. Focus on other signals like body language or reading behind the lines to see what it is that someone is saying beyond the words that they speak.
Improve communication by being clear
Seems pretty obvious, doesn’t it? But before going into any communication, think clearly about what it is that you want to convey to the person you’re communicating with. I’ve talked to people who take 30 minutes to answer a question. They are really unclear on what the answer is or what the question was in the first place. I’m sure we’re all aware of people we know that can speak a lot of words but are really not clear about what’s coming out of their mouth at all. Don’t be that person. If you need to, ask more questions to the person you’re communicating with so when you do answer them you can be more specific.
Improve communication by being aware of body language
Remember those non-verbal signals are just as important as the verbal ones. Watch other people’s body language and also be mindful of your own. Crossed arms and frowns sometimes signal that people don’t feel comfortable or are not understanding what you’re saying. Be careful that you’re not doing this yourself. Have an open posture when you’re talking to somebody. This reflects that you are open and receiving what it is they are saying to you.
Improve communication by being open to feedback
Those who are most productive are open and receptive to feedback and being coached. They are also the most adaptable. Ensure that you have ways to receive 360 feedback. This way, you can constantly receive information and feedback from others on how you can improve your communication. Then, you can adapt your communication style based on the needs of where you need to communicate at the time. However, you have to be open and receptive to feedback in order to change.
Improve communication by being open-minded
Have an open mind. Think about this. If you don’t have an open mind with the person you’re having a conversation with then you’re not going to be open to receiving information. You’ll either be closed off, guarded, not receptive or not listening to what the other person has to say. You won’t be thinking objectively about what’s being said. Instead, you’ll be thinking about the response that you want to give. Having an open mind means you’ll be able to have a strong conversation with the person you’re communicating with. You will be more likely to resolve conflicts and problems if you have an open mind. You don’t always have to agree with the opinions of others, but you also don’t also have to always communicate that you disagree
Mastering the art of communication will help you in all areas of life. This goes for all your personal relationships as well as work relationships. You’ll be able to get more of what you want when you can communicate well. And remember, it is the listening part of the communication that ensures that you are a better communicator. Challenge yourself to get better at one of these areas of communication.
P.S. If you’re a Busy Working Woman and you’d like more advice, tips and information to minimise stress and maximise time, join our Facebook tribe of Busy Working Women Owning Their Lives.