Years ago, The Conference Board of Canada, an independent, not-for-profit applied research organization, developed the Employability Skills 2000+, which lists the critical skills that employees need to succeed in the workplace. Communication skills, tops the list of fundamental skills needed to succeed in the workplace. A decade-and-a-half later, with the rise of social media networking and texting, communication is becoming more casual, even in situations where more formal ways of communicating are required. What this means is that people from the younger generation, may not know or even understand the importance of effective communication skills in the workplace. When you take a look at the greatest leaders, one of the traits they possess, is the ability to communicate effectively, which underscores the importance of communication skills.
1. Listen, listen, and listen
People want to know that they are being heard. Really listen to what the other person is saying, instead of formulating your response. Ask for clarification to avoid misunderstandings. At that moment, the person speaking to you should be the most important person in your life. Another important point is to have one conversation at a time. This means that if you are speaking to someone on the phone, do not respond to an email, or send a text at the same time. The other person will know that she doesn’t have your undivided attention.
2. Who you are talking to matters.
It is okay to use acronyms and informal language when you are communicating with a buddy, but if you are emailing or texting your boss, “Hey,” “TTYL” or any informal language, has no place in your message. You cannot assume that the other person knows what the acronym means. Some acronyms have different meanings to different people, do you want to be misunderstood? Effective communicators target their message based on who they are speaking to, so try to keep the other person in mind, when you are trying to get your message across.