Behind every great leader is a set of great communication skills. No matter what field you are in, it is important to have the ability to communicate effectively. Further, without effectively connecting with a group and inspiring their actions, it is nearly impossible for someone to lead them. A leader with poor communication skills may have trouble maximizing the organization’s success. To avoid this obstacle, here are some of the top communication skills that can make you an effective leader.
1. It’s not what you say, it’s how you say it
Even the most important message can be lost to an audience without proper delivery. Your message will resonate more with your audience when combined with confident body language and a strong tone. For example, open, approachable hand gestures increase the chances of your audience accepting your message, and avoiding a monotonous voice by emphasizing important points in your message can drive your audience away from boredom. Ultimately, by projecting confidence rather than arrogance, people will be more perceptive to your ideas and notions.
By expressing yourself with an impact and you demonstrating a passion for your message, you can make a more effective impact on your organization or audience.
2. Know what you’re talking about
If you don’t have a full understanding of what you’re talking about, how do you expect your audience to understand it? It is hard to respect a leader that is uneducated and unfamiliar with the proposed topic. Make sure you know your stuff, and be prepared to field any questions from your team. People will lose trust in you if you are unable to answer basic questions, and this will weaken your ability to effectively communicate and lead your team.
3. Communication is a two-way street
It is very important to acknowledge that communication in the professional world typically happens between two or more parties. Think dialogue, not monologue; communication usually renders a response, and it is helpful to listen to that response with an open mind. Listen to opinions and opposing positions in order to understand what is on their mind. Create dialogues with those who challenge you in order to discuss potential issues and possibly find new solutions to issues that you wouldn’t have thought of otherwise. Simply broadcasting your thoughts and your message will not have the same result as having a meaningful conversation about your message in order to generate true understanding.
4. Know your team
Every team or group has different characteristics, and thus it is necessary to know how and when they will be most receptive to new information. If your team is more creatively oriented, give them more options when assigning a project. Getting to know the strengths and weaknesses of your team members will make a large impact, as it will help you to better delegate and connect with them. By taking the time to find out your team members’ interests, hobbies, personal issues, etc. and communicate with them based on these, you are building a level of trust and creating a segue for honest and open communication.
5. Be specific
Some of the best communication is clear and concise. If a topic is too ambiguous or vague, people can become confused. It is better to get to your point instead of filling a message up with extra and unnecessary words. Make deliberate word choices and be specific.
For more information on how to use communication to become a more effective leader, please visit https://www.forbes.com/sites/mikemyatt/2012/04/04/10-communication-secrets-of-great-leaders/ or https://www.forbes.com/sites/steveolenski/2016/03/29/five-communication-skills-that-make-good-leaders-great/#6f162fc67ae9 or https://www.thebalance.com/communication-skills-list-2063779.
Written By: Victoria Webster