Why communication is key? 5 tips for effective communication
TABLE OF CONTENTS
- What is Communication?
- Effective Team Communication is key in the Workplace
- 5 tips for effective communication at the workplace
You might have come across this quote very often - Communication is key. But what makes communication so important? Communication is the act of transferring information from one person to another. Communication is considered effective if the receiver understands your message as you intend.
In a workplace, effective communication allows work to be completed diligently, improves productivity and saves time. In life, it helps to build meaningful relationships. As it plays a vital role in one's professional and personal success, communication is key to life, work and relationships. Communication has existed ever since humans appeared on this planet and continues to be essential for humans to create and share ideas, information, feelings, facts, views and emotions.
1) What is Communication?
In simple terms, communication is the exchange of thoughts, ideas and information, between people or groups of people.
Nowadays, communication occurs through a variety of mediums like verbally (Through phone & video calls), non-verbally (Through facial expressions), in-writing (Through newsletter, blogs), and even through behavior. But fundamentally, every communication involves a sender, a message, and a receiver.
The Merriam-Webster Dictionary defines communication as: “ a process by which information is exchanged between individuals through a common system of symbols, signs, or behavior”
Effective Team Communication is key in the Workplace
Communication is key to the success of an organization. Communicating effectively at work helps an individual grow professionally, increase productivity, and contribute to the sustainability of an organization. Employees with strong communication skills have a greater chance of becoming future leaders. In a workplace, there are two types of communication that take place:
1. Synchronous communication
Synchronous communication is the exchange of information between two or more people that happens in real-time. This is most prevalent in in-office workplaces. Some examples of synchronous communication include phone calls, video conferencing, in-person meetings.
2. Asynchronous communication
Asynchronous communication is the exchange of information between two or more people which not does require an immediate response to the message sender. This type of communication is used mostly by remote companies. Examples of asynchronous communication are E-mail and chat communication.
A report by iCIMS Hiring Insights shows that 94% of recruiting professionals believe an employee with stronger soft skills has a better chance of being promoted to a leadership position than an employee with more years of experience but weaker soft skills.
Let’s take a look at the benefits of having employees that communicate effectively:
High work quality: Employees who are able to communicate effectively, have a clear direction to carry forward with ideas and also ensure to deliver high-quality results.
Innovation: Employees can share ideas concisely which brings more creativity and innovation to the table. Effective communication also provides the space needed to brainstorm and ideate on the various challenges faced by companies.
Strong team collaboration: By communicating effectively, employees can build strong relationships with their colleagues and superiors. Working together as a team ensures cohesion and long term success. Not only will employees be able to enjoy their work but also strive for better work performance. Cross team collaboration becomes much easier as employees from different departments or functions within the company are able to communicate and align on common goals.
5 tips for effective communication at the workplace
1. Be concise and clear while communicating
While communicating with a person, be clear about the objective of your message and let them know the purpose of the message. Make sure that your message is easily understood by keeping it succinct.
People prefer short and precise messages, so stick to the point and be clear about your intentions. People shouldn't rely on assumptions to figure out your message. Only when your message is clear, the receiver has a clear picture of what is being conveyed and can act accordingly.
2. Don’t make any assumptions
Assumptions are formed when information is incomplete. It lacks evidence or facts, and it’s quite easy to form assumptions if you don’t ask the right questions.
Before communicating, take a moment to categorize your initial thoughts as fact or fiction. One simple way to help avoid making assumptions is to start asking questions and be vocal. The more questions you ask, the less assumptions you are likely to make.
3. Listen with empathy
According to Indeed, empathic listening is the practice of being attentive and responsive to others’ input during conversation. By listening with empathy, you can make an emotional connection with the other person and give a more heartfelt and a personal response.
You can be an empathic listener by creating a comfortable space for sharing thoughts and truly understand their emotions and perspectives
4. Think before you speak
A person's choice of words and tone reveals a lot about them, so it's important to prepare before speaking. Effective conversations are possible with advanced planning, preparation, and formulation of what you want to say and what you want to get out of the conversation.
The THANKS technique is a well-known method for improving your communication by thinking before you speak. To put simply, what you are about to say should be True, Helpful, Affirming, Necessary, Kind and Sincere.
5. Learn the basics of nonverbal communication
One study found that nonverbal communication accounted for 55 percent of how an audience perceived a presenter. That means that the majority of communication is not through words, but through physical cues.
Developing the ability to understand and use nonverbal communication can help you connect with others, express what you mean and build better relationships at home and work. Body language is usually used to convey positive feelings, even when you’re not actually experiencing them. You can master the art of nonverbal communication by adopting a positive body language and maintaining a proper posture to signal confidence.