Being able to communicate effectively is easily one of the most important life skills. Having strong communication skills aids in all aspects of life – your job, your family, your partner, etc. These skills allow you to pass on information more accurately and quickly, as well as lessen the likelihood of someone misunderstanding.
See the results of a 2016 LinkedIn survey regarding the most sought-after soft skills among employers below.
These communication skills don’t always come naturally, but there are ways to help improve them:
It is important to be a good listener in order to become a good communicator. Active listening is one way to work on your listening skills – paying close attention to what others are saying and clarifying by rephrasing their questions for better understanding.
Get straight to the point. Filler words are unnecessary – convey your message in as few words as possible. Rambling typically makes the listener confused and uninterested.
Good body language such as eye contact, hand gestures and tone of voice all contribute to your communication. Someone who is in a relaxed body stance, using a friendly tone is going to be much more approachable than someone who is sitting with their arms crossed.
It’s important to be confident in what you are saying and how you are communicating. Confidence isn’t always going to come through verbally, but can be as easy as maintaining eye contact, staying in a relaxed stance, or talking with concision.
When you disagree with someone, you should try your best to sympathize with their point of view rather than trying to fight it. You can respect their opinions while having your own.
One of the most important aspects of communication is respect. This might be saying the person’s name, paying attention to what they are saying, practicing active listening, and more. This way, the other person feels appreciated and feels important, which will lead to a more honest and productive conversation in the long run.
Using the correct medium
There are many, many ways to communicate with one another, but in certain situations you need to pick the most appropriate one. For example, if someone is being fired, communicating in person is much more appropriate then emailing or texting them.