“Miscommunication Leads to Complication” – Lauryn Hill
Good communicators make communication look easy. But it’s hard work – like doing weights at the gym or counting calories. Workplace communication is often the most difficult, which seems odd considering we spend more time with the people we work with than we do with our families. I am the first to admit that sending an email, a quick text message or shouting over my cubicle takes far less effort than getting up and having a conversation face-to-face. Why is that? Because a significant amount of the time our emails and text messages are often misread or misinterpreted.
This is due to the fact that the true message becomes lost in translation and the text messages and emails become ineffectual and aimless. So what can we do to better communicate with everyone around us and especially people we work with? If you want to be a powerful communicator, it’s important to understand that it takes commitment and hard work. Yes, some people do have a natural gift, but most don’t. Most of the time, communication fails because people don’t plan it, practice it or perfect it. And because poor communication is so widespread, it is one of the biggest causes of job dissatisfaction, relationship breakdown, family problems and productivity.
I have found by trial and error throughout my personal and professional life that following these tips are helpful in communicating more effectively at work and at home.
1. Plan Your Message – If you want to communicate with impact, plan your message carefully. Apart from saving you a lot of time, planning keeps you focused and ensures your communication relationship is purposeful and meaningful.
2. Practice Delivering Your Message- The old saying, practice makes perfect is just as important for communication as it is for anything else. Practice, Practice, Practice! Commit to practicing your communication for the long haul so that good communication techniques become a habit.
3. Perfect Your Communication– Be mindful of your tone of voice, body language and eye contact. Get in front of a mirror, grab a co-worker and practice your speech- then ask for feedback. Good communication is rarely an accident. It’s the result of careful planning, practice, and review. In other words, it’s not easy.
I recently came across an infographic from Highfive (listed below) that is helpful in understanding why having effective workplace communication matters, and how to best accomplish it. It gives insightful tips that you can partner with my list and become a gladiator at communicating!
Check out our Supervisory Academy where we are going to talk more about proven techniques of active and effective listening and better ways to effectively communicate in Session #2.
Invista Performance Solutions was given full permission from Highfive to use their infographic in this blog post, the infographic can be found here: https://highfive.com/blog/effective-workplace-communication