Experts often mention how communication is key when it comes to the work world. Whether it’s building relationships with clients or networking, communication is at the heart of what we do as people. Many say that great communication is critical for business leaders, but I would argue that it’s critical for all of us. Who among us doesn’t have a story about a miscommunication that led to something bigger?
Communication is crucial, but it’s not always easy to get your point across tactfully. As Mike Myatt skillfully explained, “It is the ability to develop a keen external awareness that separates the truly great communicators from those who muddle through their interactions with others.” Therefore, it is important to assess what the other party wants or needs in relation to what you are delivering. To use a PR term, you must be ‘on message’ to succeed in the working world; if your audience is not buying what you are selling, what is the point? If your employees or employers don’t find you to be articulate, it’s time to learn something from professional communicators. I have often said that empathy is one of the greatest characteristics to have for working with others. As Myatt mentions, “Empathetic communicators display a level of authenticity and transparency that is not present with those who choose to communicate behind the carefully crafted facade propped-up by a very fragile ego.” This is true regardless of where you are on the corporate ladder.
In addition to empathy, great communicators must also be great listeners. It doesn't mean you have to give other people what they want all the time, but you must be able to express your opinions with an open mind in the work place. If you are not great at listening, I suggest sitting at a meeting and just observing. It will open your eyes to what is happening around you and enable you to communicate effectively.
Please let me know what communication strategies you use in the workplace.