Among the three keys to professional success, communication skills is the most important in my opinion.
I believe it encompasses the other two. That is, character and competence.
WHAT IS COMMUNICATION SKILLS?
Communication skills is the ability to convey or share ideas and feelings effectively.
Being able to communicate effectively is perhaps the most important of all life skills. It is what enables us to pass information to other people and to understand what is said to us.
Communication, written or oral, is the primary means for leaders and managers to influence action.
WHY DO YOU NEED COMMUNICATION SKILLS?
According to research, leaders and managers spend most of their time at work communicating. This can be upward, downward or across. Thus, communication drives workplace success.
An individual with good technical knowledge should be able to communicate effectively to bring the management up to date. Also, a strong financial model requires a compelling story to convince investors.
Being able to articulate well provides a significant advantage in all aspects of life.
Therefore, good communication skills are essential to allow others and yourself to understand information more accurately and quickly. In contrast, poor communication skills cause misunderstanding and can be frustrating.
SIGNS OF BAD COMMUNICATION
Some signs of bad communication are listed below:
- Lack of specific communication
- Using the incorrect mediums to convey important messages
- Passive-aggressive communication
- Lack of follow-through and consideration
- Blaming and intimidating others
- Failing to listen
HOW TO IMPROVE YOUR COMMUNICATION SKILLS
Here are some key points to develop and improve communication skills.
- Listening: To become a good communicator, it is important to practice active listening. Pay close attention to others and ask questions to clarify things for better understanding.
- Conciseness: Pass your message in as few words as possible. Also, void speaking excessively as this would lead to distraction. Use words that will not confuse the audience.
- Confidence: Be confident when you interact with others. Being confident can be as easy as maintaining eye contact and a relaxed body stance.
- Body language: Practice good body language, use eye contact, and utilize hand gestures. Furthermore, watch the tone of the voice when communicating with others. Eye contact is important in communication. Look the person in the eye to indicate that you are focused on the conversation.
- Use the correct medium: it is important to choose the right medium when communicating. For example, communicating in person about serious matters like layoffs and salary changes is more appropriate than sending an email regarding the matter.
- Empathising: Being able to understand the feelings of those around you is an integral part of being an effective communicator. Having high emotional intelligence and demonstrating an ability to empathize builds rapport between you and others and increases your ability to communicate.
In summary, the ability to communicate information accurately, clearly, and as intended, is a vital life skill. It is something that should not be overlooked.
Communication skills may take a lifetime to master which in my opinion, no one can ever claim to have mastered them. Therefore, it is never too late to work on improving your communication skills.
This will benefit all aspects of your life. From your professional life to social gatherings and everything in between.
Thanks for reading.