Effective Communication Can Help In The Workforce
Dear Dr. LeCrone: Our company continues to undergo rapid changes to keep us afloat during this current economic upheaval.
I am providing in-service training on effective communication to our employees as part of an overall desire to improve efficiency in our workforce.
Could you please provide me with some suggestions on this topic?
— A human resource manager
Dear manager: Being able to relate to others in an effective and meaningful way can improve the morale and productivity of organizations.
Good communication skills can be learned and with practice, can help make an organization run more smoothly.
There are many variables that can make relating to others a positive experience and hopefully some of the following can help you with your presentation.
* Active listening. Use strong eye contact and focus on the other person’s message. In so doing you demonstrate interest, concern, and caring.
* Feedback about your level of understanding. Tell the other person if you understood. Ask if some statement of agreement or disagreement is needed at this time.
* Willingness and ability to discuss feelings when appropriate. Let the other person know how you feel about what they are attempting to communicate. This often makes their effort more productive and rewarding.
* Ability to accept less than positive messages without becoming defensive and guarded. If you are willing or unable to do this, relating to others becomes a shallow and difficult task.
* Ability to offer constructive feedback. A critique need not be a criticism. A positive attitude helps.
* Freedom from stereotyped and prejudicial thinking. Keep openness to new and different points of view. This reinforces continual learning for both participants.
* Ability to establish trust and maintain loyalty. Relationships built on trust and loyalties are on firm ground.
* Ability to communicate clearly and in understandable terms with others. Keep the conversation free from ambiguity, double messages, and jargon-filled language. Clarity is the key.
* Ability to accept positive feedback. Compliments and expressions of gratitude are two examples.
* Comfort and ease in the presence of other people. Keep a general feeling of self-confidence when relating to others.
These skills may be present to a greater or lesser degree in anyone. Some of them may be absent entirely.
In examining one’s own ability to relate to people, improvement can come in those areas that are weak or absent.
Good luck in your training sessions.
Harold H. LeCrone, Jr., Ph.D. Copyright © 2011