Communicating as a Leader

Practice Effective Communications Techniques With Your Employees

Lex Antonic asked:

So, how do you rate as a manager?

Do your employees and coworkers come to you freely for instruction and clarification or even with new ideas? Do you feel that your direction is carried out clearly and efficiently or do you have to bang your head against the wall to get your point across?

We all know that a team is only as good as its’ leader and your communication skills have a major impact on how effective a leader you are in business today. Luckily, even if you are not a born communicator you can begin to acquire these skills by following some fairly simple rules and pointers:

Know Your Target Audience:

Different people require different types of engagement so adjust your style accordingly. It is important to understand the people with whom you are communicating and speak their “language”. This not only facilitates good communication but it also reflects your empathy and understanding of the other parties and their situation.

Network With Your Team:

Leaders gain the confidence of their employees by building up a personal rapport. We all respond well to charm and humor if it is genuine. A feel good message, if delivered constructively, can be an effective way to get a point across, especially if that point also contains an element of correction or reprimand. Don’t forget to also listen to

what the other person is saying. They are much more likely to absorb what you are saying if they also feel heard.

Keep The Message Simple:

A simple message without a lot of technical jargon easily grabs the attention of the target audience. Less is definitely more. Decide what points are important and stick to them. (Of course, if the points are technical then definitely include the jargon).

Be An Effective Listener First:

According to Dale Carnegie’s book, a timeless classic “How to win friends and influence people,” the golden rule of effective communication techniques is to listen firs. Understanding the needs of your employees and listening to them with undivided attention will earn you loyal team players. This not only helps in getting the job done faster but it makes it a much more rewarding experience for all involved. This will never hurt your business.

Take responsibility for message conveyed:

Don’t make the assumption that every person in a room will hear you in the same way. It is your responsibility as a leader to ensure that each person listening has clearly understood the message. We have all played enough “Broken Telephone” to know what can happen if a vague message get passed down the line.

Follow Up:

One way to make sure the message is well understood is to reiterate and follow up the original message in writing. You can also ask individuals to repeat the message as they understand it. “What did you take from that message” or “Can I answer any questions you have” would be great questions to ask.

Motivate the listener:

Effective leaders are those that motivate their employees through their interactions. By speaking with clarity and authority, you can give your listeners confidence in your abilities and motivate your employees to respond positively to your message. This in turn will help to build their own confidence and enthusiasm around the role they are playing on your team.

We all want to maximize the success and productivity of our business. Bad communication resulting in mixed messages, crossed wires and hard feelings is at best counter productive and can scuttle even the best laid plans. It quite simply is a luxury which no business can afford.

Learning to communicate more effectively as a leader can have a profound impact on the growth of your business and is sure to help to create a more dynamic and positive working environment.

Good ideas are easy but it is the leader who can get them across quickly and effectively who will make things happen.

After all, isn’t that what good leaders do?

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