Being an excellent communicator is essential to success in any field. There are many different techniques that help turn anyone into an effective and productive communicator. Communication is made up of different actions and processes including words, signs, sounds and behaviors. All of these are used to express or exchange information, ideas, thoughts and feelings to someone else.
Of course, this is a very broad and basic definition of communication. Communication ranges from making someone’s acquaintance to persuading a whole room to take part in a campaign or buy a product. Communication involves conveying information. Whether it’s saying “hello” to your neighbor in the morning or pitching a new idea to your supervisor at work, communication is important.
Here are some basic tips and tricks to learn the different techniques involved with being an effective and excellent communicator.
In both verbal and written communication, vocabulary is a useful tool. Vocabulary refers to words used in language. You should choose your vocabulary according to your audience. If you are talking to a group of scientists, for example, you can use technical terms and phrases to get your point across. For those who want to learn about a subject but who are by no means experts, then using simpler words that are easier to understand can be a better bet.
Tone of voice matters when communicating to any individual or group. Your tone, of course, should match the content of your communication. Tone involves volume and the type of emotion you’re communicating, as well as the emphasis you place on the words that you choose. The meaning of any sentence can change if a different emphasis is put on a different word. The emphasis on any given word implies more information than the actual content of the sentence. Tone draws a listener’s attention and indicates the important parts of the message. Implied information changes according to tone.
Body language can complement or completely destroy the messages you send to others. Facial expressions, posture, gestures with arms or hands, coughing and swallowing, fidgeting, looking around the room and blushing can all be non-verbal indicators of communication. Many people claim that individuals will move in a certain way or look in a certain direction if they are lying or trying to hide something. The response of individuals to a message or a certain form of communication depends on whether they trust the person communicating the response.
Though eye contact is considered to be a part of body language, it’s worth mentioning twice. A great way to make an immediate connection is to make eye contact with another person. Keeping eye contact with someone can help you “read” other people. If they are avoiding eye contact with you, then are they hiding something? Is it something you said? Answering these questions helps you to best figure out a more compelling and effective way to communicate.
Listening may be the most effective tip of all. Most people have trouble listening and just wait for their turn to speak, but it’s best to think of listening as a way to learn from another person. Not every conversation is an argument. When all you do is focus on what’s next, then you might miss important thoughts or sentiments being expressed. The best way to become a better listener is to repeat back what other people have just said. This gives you time to fully digest their words and to communicate that you were listening to what they said. Extracting what other people mean can be the most important and effective tool for any leader.