Listening is the key to understanding in communication
Being very good at speaking to a person requires the ability to listen for understanding, to ensure what you said, is what someone else has heard. The number one reason for poor communication may be time management. Due to the fact many leaders are highly scheduled, it becomes easier to deliver a message and keep moving than to stop and take the time to communicate in a useful and clear manner. By applying some or all the best practices shared here, the communication skills you have may be sharpened, and the results you see will likely improve.
Leadership and Communication
Consider how you would apply these simple ideas adapted from You Don’t Need a Title to be a Leader: How Anyone, Anytime Can Make a Positive Difference.
1. Start with a question
Be clear on what you want. If there was ever a time to “begin with the end in mind,” it is when you communicate.
2. Focus on quality, not quantity
Good communication is about quality, not quantity.
3. Speak with truth and compassion
In leadership communication don’t tell people what they want to hear. Tell them what they need to hear. Just make sure you tell them in such a way that they’ll listen. There is your view and their view, and often the best point of view lies somewhere in-between.
4. Focus on the listener, not yourself
There are three modes of communicating. They are being:
Leadership communication requires you to be listener-centered and that you put personal needs aside and become so familiar with the message you are trying to communicate that you can focus on and respond emphatically to the listener.
5. Simplify the message
The only thing people have less of today than disposable income or time is attention. With excessive demands on limited attention, effective leadership communicators harness the power of the sound bite. They make concepts easy to understand and repeat.
6. Entertain to engage
For a leader to be heard and understood, he or she must break preoccupation and grab attention, in other words, entertain. That means a leader captures and holds the attention of those being addressed. You can’t bore people into positive action.
7. Feedback and feed forward
The best way to make sure another person has heard and understood what you said is to ask them to repeat it back to you in their own words. You could say, “I want to make sure I explained that clearly. Would you please tell me how you understand what I’ve said?”
8. Tell a better story
Telling a story is good, but being the story is better. The congruency between who you are and the stories you tell as a leader create credibility. The purpose, however, isn’t to be speaker-focused, but to use personal experience and story as a bridge to build connection.
Make this list part of your day – an easy and simple way to power-up your communication competence in leadership. Get started now!
Write the eight best practices on a piece of paper small enough to carry with you for one week.
Glance at your leadership communication best practices list before a meeting, gathering, or brief conversation to keep them top-of-mind.
After one week, reflect on how your interaction with others has changed; you may be pleasantly surprised! You will see how does effective communication play a part in leadership.
As a leader it is your responsibility to create opportunities for understanding, and to invite creative dialogue. Lead people together and the whole team will succeed, including you.
Source: www.lqsolutionsvault.com with ideas adapted from “You Don’t Need a Title to be a Leader: How Anyone, Anytime Can Make a Positive Difference.”
If you are a leader and you have a story to share, please leave a comment.
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