The Quest for Clear Communication
Over the next while we will explore the topic of communication in the workplace.
I am a firm believer in the quest for Radial Clarity which to me means that the intended message that you are sending is received in the way you had planned. Additionally, Radical Clarity means that communication is not avoided. Even if the message is tough, communicate openly and honestly. Your reputation rides on your ability to communicate. There are no perfect communication styles or ones that are better than the other. You need to find your own “voice”. There are, however, helpful tips which can help. I will be sharing some of the easy ones that have worked for me.
Listening is divided into two main categories: passive and active. Passive listening is little more that hearing. It occurs when the receiver of the message has little motivation to listen carefully, such as when listening to music, television, or when being polite. Active listening means fully engaging in what the other person is saying and truly hearing what they have to say.
The following are a few traits of active listeners:
o Spend more time listening than talking.
o Do not finish the sentences of others.
o Do not answer questions with questions.
o Are aware of biases. We all have them. We need to control them.
o Let the other speakers talk. Do not dominate the conversations.
o Plan responses after the others have finished speaking, NOT while they are speaking.
o Provide feedback, but do not interrupt incessantly.
o Analyze by looking at all the relevant factors and asking open-ended questions. Walk others through by summarizing.
o Keep conversations on what others say, NOT on what interests them.
o Take brief notes. This forces them to concentrate on what is being said.