Effective communication is an important tool for anyone in business, but is especially so for managers as their role is essentially making sure everyone knows what needs to be done to achieve the task and hit targets.
But communication is not just the spoken word, although that of course is important .There are other factors to be considered to enable effective communication.
Here are some tips on effective communication.
Create the right environment for effective communication
Choose the right time. For example difficult and complex topics should not be left till the end of the day or the evening when people are tired. Schedule sessions like that for the morning when people are at their best and you can have a constructive meeting.
Choose the right place, especially if the conversation is private or sensitive. Select a private place to discuss topics which may be contentious or not be well received, This will allow people to have an open and a two way dialogue.
If you are making a presentation then put aside some time to make sure that people can concentrate on you and your message and not be distracted by inadequate location, lack of seating, or poor sound. Check equipment and resources in advance. Remove distractions such as mobile phones.
Clarify ideas in your mind before you start to communicate them. Decide on key points and focus your message around them. You have about 90 seconds to grab your audience’s attention, so make sure the opening is impactful.
It helps people to process complex information if you follow a three step plan.
- tell the audience what you are going to discuss
- make the presentation
- summarise and reprise what you said .
This allows them to prepare for what you are going to say, listen to it, and then digest it.
Make clear what you expect from a communication. Are you conveying information or canvasing opinion?
Stay on topic, and emphasise your key points .Thank your listeners when you have finished, and invite questions if you have time.
Communication through speech
Set your listeners at ease at the beginning of your speech with a joke or story
Speak clearly and articulately
Makes sure your facial expression and body language echo your words,
Pay attention to the pitch, volume and speed of your delivery to retain audience interest.
Speak slowly, take deep breaths and use pauses to allow the audience to digest information
Communication through body language
Acknowledge people in the audience.
Use facial and hand gestures effectively.
Enhance effective communication by using open body language—don’t cross your arms or legs, adopt an open stance, make eye contact.
Of course, it takes time and effort to develop your skills and become an effective communicator. But as in all things, the harder you try, the more effort and practice you put in, the more instinctive and spontaneous your communication skills will become.
Effective Communication, Quick Facts
Create the right environment for effective communication ,Choose the right time and place
When delivering a presentation, follow a three step plan. Introduce, discuss, summarise.
When Communicating through speech be aware of the pitch, volume and speed of your delivery to retain audience interest.
Don’t forget Communication through body language. Make sure your facial expression and body language echo your words.