by Tony Richards
Last week, we began an exploration into The Force of Communication, and how important is it to communicate with purpose and on purpose.
This week, I want to delve into the subject a little deeper with a couple of points for you to keep in mind as you endeavor to master the skill of communicating.
Communicate with congruency in your actions
Always remember, as a leader (or a follower), people watch you and your actions perhaps even more than what you say. They are looking for lack of congruency between them. If you say one thing and do another, people follow your example. If you say something and back it up with your actions, you will then be providing the evidence for people who are listening to you, and they will more willingly follow your lead.
The Power Twins
Speaking and writing. These are the power twins everyone can improve upon. For each step you take to improve your competency to speak and write, you will improve your leadership and career position two steps. You shouldn’t tell yourself to be the best in the world in these areas, just set a goal to identify your level and clearly identify the next level of competency you should shoot for. Continual improvement will make your transition from good to great. Both skills require lots of practice, a good place to start is speaking in front of your mirror and writing in a journal.
Be present in listening
Communication goes both ways, not just one. Have you ever had a conversation in which you actually believed the person didn’t hear 75% of what you said? Isn’t that deflating? Don’t do that to people. Keep yourself engaged and turn down your “internal squawk box” dialogue. Don’t be waiting to talk, if think of something to say and you are afraid you’ll forget it, just jot it down quickly and re-engage into the conversation. It’s hard to effectively communicate if you miss what your audience wants. Once you know what they want, you will be better able to communicate.
Have genuine care for the other person
Talk WITH them, not TO them. People do not want to be talked AT, especially young people. In this age we live in, interactive is the big key! Communication is what we are talking about here. The root word being commune, which means to “live and share together”. We are sharing words and ideas. We must care about the people we are communicating with, interested in their needs and desires, hopes and dreams. When we discover those, we communicate more effectively with them.
That’s enough to practice on this week, make it a communication adventure! Part 3 next week!
Let me know how it is going, Tony