In the fast past world we live in today, it is very important that you improve your level of communication skills. In fact, this should not be an option. It should be a must whether you need it for your business or for your personal life. These and more are what we are going to be talking about today.
Note that this series is available in multiple formats, depending on how you prefer it. At your convenience, you can check it out on our YouTube channel or as a podcast (Self-improvement Podcast) wherever you prefer to listen to podcasts.
You need to improve your communication level
On a consistent base, we are always giving and receiving information. There is no doubt about that, but to deliver quick and accurate information, a good understanding of nonverbal and written communication skills is absolutely essential. Now, let’s consider some of the ways we can benefit from good communication skills.
Now, imagine that you are applying for a job or looking for a promotion within your current job. You definitely will need to demonstrate that and one way to show that you deserve the position is through good communication skills.
You see, the point is that your employer, though not always, might know fully well that you deserve the promotion or the work you are applying for, and he/she might never give it to you until you ask for it. By that, I mean asking for it in a proper manner.
Is that the correct way to treat an employee? Well, I leave you to be the judge. But that is the way it often turns to be sometimes, and if you have ever worked for different people, you will understand that it is true.
As we have said in the previous discussion in this series, you need good communication skills to speak correctly on every given occasion. This, of course, requires that you maintain good eye contact with the person of a group of persons with whom you are communicating.
Remember also to tailor your language according to the sensibility and understanding of your audience – listen effectively and say exactly what you mean, whether it is verbal or written communication. And when you do this, you will appear more valuable to other people because you will appear to them that you know what you are doing and therefore deserve the respect for it.
Now the big take away is this – if you keep practising what we have been talking about throughout this month, you will see a considerable appreciation in your perceived value as a person and this will quickly be reflected in how people treat you.
Imagine that you have an idea that might even help someone and maybe this person really does need the pieces of information you have to share. Do you know that the likelihood that the person will actually act upon your idea depends largely on your level of communication skill? It is true.
With good communication skill, the ability to listen, speak clearly and convincingly, you can put other people at ease. That is, an effective communication skill can stop an otherwise escalating tension and can even put an end to the war between countries and save millions of lives.
Having you heard of the saying that “the pen is mightier than the sword?” It’s not literarily referring to a pen as a writing tool, compared to a sword an instrument of war. It means the power of communication, whether written or spoken is more effective than the physical force. And come to think of it. All wars are won or lost on the table of communication.
The physical violence, the bloodshed, the genocides and the death of millions of people are only a manifestation of that power of communication or the lack of it.
So, make it a duty to tap into such immeasurable skill as communication. Learn to listen to other people and show interest in what they say or do. Pay attention to the tone of a telephone conversation because it reveals a lot about the other side that might be invisible to the naked eyes.
Yes, the other side might be thousands of kilometres away from you, but through your listening skill and attentiveness, you will understand, feel the emotional temperature, able to persuade others and make your values felt.
Build Better Rapport with Clients Through Better Communication
Another benefit of effective communication skill is that it helps you to builds better rapport with your customers. How? I will explain it.
You see, understanding your customers, and treating them well, like making them feel special can easily boost their loyalty to you and your services, and this can quickly lead to more sales and profits for your business. How to go about building strong relationships with your customers.
Now, I have an eBay store where I list PDF books. It has happened more than once that despite the fact that I clearly state on the product page that buyers will receive PDF books, some customers have sent me rather challenging messages, requesting a physical copy of the book they have bought. Of course, we usually do resolve the issue with some of them coming back to get more PDF books.
What I want you to understand by this example is that as a business person you may have done your best to communicate your message to the customers and maybe for some reasons, sometimes beyond your control some will not get the message. At that point, you don’t need to hold your ground and start claiming a right.
It’s always a better approach to help the costumers understand the message, even to the point of repeating yourself a couple of times until the issue is clear. Your customers are your employers and you do not want to lose your employer, except it is the last option and there was nothing else you could do to save the situation.
And if you manage to demonstrate to the customers, through an effective communication skill that you care about their concerns, they will usually come back, even if your product might not be the best at the moment.
So, communication skills are highly important if you want to build and maintain a good rapport with your costumers.
Good Communication Increases Engagement
According to a recent study on the psychology of employee engagement, only about 15% of adult employees are effectively engaged with their employers. Now imagine you are a manager of a company and you understand that only fewer workers are truly engaged with their co-workers and maybe yourself too. What you can do is to prioritize effective communication among co-workers, thereby increasing engagement for all.
Why would a company need to invest in prioritizing effective communication among its employees? Well, studies have shown that people tend to be more productive when they work in a more harmonious and friendly environment, as against hostile ones.
People naturally want to be among other happy people. No one wants to be in a toxic environment. Am I speaking your mind?
Ok. Just because I used a working environment as an example doesn’t mean this apply only to that situation. Consider your home. With better communication skill, you are able to create more engagement among the members of your family, friends and loved ones.
Of course, this does not mean that there will no longer be negative people around. I do not mean that. Those kinds of people, like the weeds on a farm, are part of society and even within our networks. We know that. And that is also another reason why you need to increase your level of positivity and better engagement with people, through your communication skills. By so doing you are reducing the reach of their negative influence.
So, good communication skills, from wherever you want to look at it has a lot of advantages and benefits to you, personally and professionally. And helping to increase engagement is one of those important benefits.
The last benefit I will like us to consider about effective communication is building trust. This is not a small benefit by any measure.
Effective Communication Helps to Build Trust
There is one article I will like you to consider reading on this topic and it’s titled: “How to Use Communication to Build Trust and Inspire Loyalty, as Well as Lead Effectively”.
In the article, which you can find at Amanet.org, the writer started with the attractive line “Leaders can’t succeed if they aren’t good communicators”.
If that is not valuable enough to what we are discussing today in this podcast, I don’t know what else should be.
“More often than not,” continued the article, “leaders don’t even know that their communication skills need polishing. In my many years of advising leaders on the actions and communication needed to win, keep, or restore public confidence, I have concluded that many leaders, much of the time, fundamentally misunderstand communication.”
And “this misunderstanding,” the writer added, “has consequences: corporations lose competitive advantage; not-for-profits find it harder to fulfil their mission; religious denominations lose the trust and confidence of their followers; nations diminish their ability to protect citizens and achieve national security goals.”
Now, this is the point: the importance of building trust through effective communication can never be underestimated and this is why we are talking about it throughout this month. Really, I am confident that you are getting the point because this is so important.
In this service-based economy, where people are now necessarily required to engage with other people in doing their businesses and in navigating the world, you cannot afford to neglect the importance of such interpersonal skill as communication. You just cannot do that. Not anymore.
We have seen the disaster it can cause, both at the highest political offices to the lowest position, within the families.
For people to trust that you are making optimal decisions for everyone in the group you really need to develop your ability to listen attentively and embrace the opinions of other people. Trust is such a fundamental requirement in today word and effective communication skills can help you to build it.
That is where we will end today’s conversation and I hope you have gotten some value from it. Subscribe to our Mailing List to be notified of our next publication and don’t forget to leave your comment below. I remain Obehi Ewanfoh and talk to you soon