Excellent and clear communication is key to any successful relationship. Be it a personal or professional relationship; you can only translate your thoughts and feelings into clear messages with effective communication.
Developing better communication skills will help your business and personal life incredibly, allowing you to express yourself clearly without sending confusing messages. You will no longer risk miscommunication or misunderstanding what others are saying.
If you’ve noticed that your communication skills need improvement, we have some helpful tips to learn how to become better at communicating.
Be an active listener.
Listening is often one of the most critical aspects of communication. While someone is talking to you, make sure that you are paying attention by looking at them directly in the eyes and nodding along as they speak. If possible, try paraphrasing what they just said back to them by repeating it in your own words so they know they were heard correctly.
Ensure you don’t interrupt them while they are speaking, as this will prevent them from fully explaining their thoughts and feelings, leading to misunderstandings between both parties involved.
Do not interrupt
People make a very common mistake when they start a conversation. They interrupt the other person while they are still speaking. This will make the speaker feel you are not interested in what they have to say, affecting how they interact with you.
To avoid this, wait for your turn patiently without cutting into someone’s conversation with irrelevant comments or questions.
Give them time to think.
Many people feel pressured to respond immediately when someone asks them a question or makes a statement. Instead of rushing into an answer, allow yourself time to consider possible responses before speaking up.
This will help ensure that whatever comes out of your mouth is thoughtful and well-considered — which will go a long way toward making it more effective.
Be clear about what you mean when you speak with others so that they understand precisely what you’re trying to tell them. Avoid vague language like “um” or “I guess so” when answering questions from coworkers or clients because it makes it difficult for people to understand what you mean by those responses.
Instead, be specific about what you’re saying, so there’s no room for misinterpretation or confusion about what you’re trying to convey.
Be concise and clear.
Make sure that you’re saying what you mean and that it’s easy to understand what you’re saying. Be brief and to the point, but also ensure you provide enough information so people can know what you mean.
For example, if a person asks you a question, don’t just say “yes” or “no.”
Please explain why you agree or disagree with them. If someone asks you a question that requires more than a simple yes or no answer, try to give them a complete answer rather than just one word or phrase, such as “yes” or “no.”
Use words that don’t cause misinterpretation
Words have power over us sometimes; they can hurt us deeply and make us feel bad about ourselves, but they can also make our day when used correctly.
If you want them to be used properly, you must use words that don’t cause misinterpretation by yourself or others who hear them. For example, if you say, “I am so stupid!” it makes you feel bad about yourself, and others may interpret it as an insult that the speaker did not intend.
Therefore instead, you could use “I made a mistake” or “I did something wrong” to not cause any misunderstanding and let others know that you are human too, just like them!
Make eye contact
Make eye contact with the person to that you are speaking. This helps to keep them focused on what you are saying because it lets them know that you are also paying attention to what they are saying.
If you are doing something else while talking to someone else, such as playing with your phone or looking around the room, they may think that they aren’t interesting enough for you or that they aren’t important enough for you to pay attention to while speaking with them.
Making eye contact shows that you care about what they have to say and that they matter enough for this conversation between the two of us at this moment.
Takeaway: Good communication skills can make all the difference in your personal and professional life.