Sunday, 20 October 2013

Three More Quick Communication Tips

Is your fuzz killing the buzz

One of the biggest communication errors I constantly encounter is the using of industry buzzwords, jargon and acronyms. This practice can and usually does,  create annoyance, at best and misunderstandings at its worst. My advice is work hard to get the fuzz out of your communication style. Oh and often the lister will just see you as someone who is trying to show off.

Check for understanding 

Can everyone define exactly what you mean from what you say. No some concepts can be hard to explain so you must periodically check the listener knows what you are on about. The are two ways to do that. You can ask do you have any questions which is OK however its better to seek a explanation from your listener. That can be difficult however the best way to do that is to ask the listener this question: "To ensure I have conveyed my meaning well do you mind putting what I am saying into your own words so we perfectly understand each other." Note: Never ask the question "do you understand".

Don't waffle, be succinct

Another common complaint I hear is that many people waffle on or go round in circles rather than getting to the point. Use short and well considered sentences and words to convey your message. Get to the point of your communication early, don't go into a long winded wind up. If the lister wants background they will usually ask for it, or you can ask if they need more information.

More from Richard Townsend

Sunday, 6 October 2013

Three Quick Communication Tips

Mean what you say and say what you mean

Is the meaning of your message clear? A great opening to any communication is  "I want to discuss xyz because…. followed by "whatever" after the opening. If you use this phrase you alert the listener to the topic and importantly your motivation for the discussion. People can't guess what you're thinking. you have to let them know.

Keep it simple

Are the words you are using appropriate to the listener? Avoid big words they can confuse the listener. Avoid jargon at all costs.. its just dumber than mud.

Is your attitude betraying your purpose

The tone and pitch of your voice will have a great effect on your listener. Keep it calm an even so you are not destroying the ability to listen for the other party. A big problem I find is page… slow it down give the listener a chance to absorb what you are saying. Speaking too quickly will convey impatience and even the other person's belief in what you are saying. If you rush you can jeopardise the empathy the listener will have for both you and your message