There’s more to communicating than just talking. Communication skills go a long way in making life easier not just at your work or business place, but also with your family, friends and anyone else that you might relate with for that matter. When someone is said to possess excellent communication skills, he or she is said to have the ability and skill to convey a message clearly and with minimal ambiguity. Is this you? Or you are like millions of other people who face communication barriers and would like to transcend them and be an exceptional communicator? Let us examine a few things that can get you started in the right direction.
If you want to be a good communicator, you have to be trained to do so. In most cases communicating effectively does not come naturally. Many schools do teach communication skills from a very early stage but most of us completely forget these lessons when we graduate. For one to become an effective communicator, one has to recall and practice what they learnt.
2. Communication involves listening also.
Many of us equate communication with eloquent speech. This is definitely true but there is more to communicating than just talking. Listening is a critical component of communicating. This is because in our introduction where we tackled what communicating is, we stated that communicating is sending clear and unambigious message. This can only be done when we are clear on what the other party is stating hence, we have to be listening actively. The term active listening has become a key component of effective communication skills.
Many people do not exercise this aspect of communicating. Not everyone communicates the way we do and cultural and ethnic considerations come into play in the way that people talk and send messages. If we are not patient with the other party we are communicating with, we may miss key components of their message causing us to give a wrong response.
4. Exercising eye contact
In today’s world, many of us get away with this because communication is now done electronically via email and chat. This however should be part of effective communicating whenever we are speaking with someone who is physically in front of us. Avoiding someone’s gaze or looking away when talking may signal to some a lack of confidence or that the communicator is being untruthful.
5. Facial expressions and body language
When speaking to someone face to face, we have to be careful because a huge percentage of communicating lies in the unspoken. Facial expressions can give off a lot of information and so can our body language. For instance, sneering, lack of eye contact, failure to smile, wincing, grinding of teeth and so forth can signal to the other party that we are either being untruthful, are being contemptuous or are disinterested in what we are saying. This goes for such postures are slouching, drooping hands, sliding backwards in the chair or yawning.