HOW TO IMPROVE CLARITY IN COMMUNICATION
Clarity is often overlooked when it comes to communication skills in general and presenting and interpersonal skills in particular. Perhaps this is because if a speaker is knowledgeable about a subject, they are expected to be clear. However, one does not have to follow the other. Workplace misunderstandings result in lost productivity, hurt feelings, and unneeded conflict. The clarity in communication can help to avoid misunderstandings and keep things moving smoothly and peacefully. It is the responsibility of each individual to ensure clarity in communication, especially since our capacity to communicate effectively is regularly evaluated.
Here are five suggestions for making clarity in communication:
- PAY ATTENTION TO YOUR AUDIENCE
You’ll need to personalize your message to your audience if you want it to be clear and easy to understand. You communicate differently a child than you do with your coworkers, bosses, employees, and colleagues. While this is an extreme scenario, the same concepts apply when considering the demands of each communication partner.
Because everyone has been steeped in the same discussion for months, or your educational backgrounds are comparable, what you say in your department may be obvious. When someone from another department is involved in the dialogue, though, you must alter your communication. If, in a work situation, for example, management is unaware of the company’s financial strategy or current events. So you’d take a step back and start from a common point to keep everyone on the same page of understanding.
- TAKE INTO CONSIDERATION YOUR BODY LANGUAGE
It’s quite feasible to correctly answer a question but then completely squander the situation with improper body language. When it comes to answering inquiries, clarity is a necessary factor. You should also face your interrogators straight on, without leaning to one side.
If you’re sitting, lean slightly toward the questioner. Also, make sure your gestures aren’t excessively big, tense, violent, or don’t contradict your statements. The triangle of appropriate material, gestures, and voice qualities that work best in gaining listeners’ support is appropriate content, gestures, and vocal qualities.
- BE EXACT ABOUT YOUR INTENTIONS
Don’t mince words in business or any other sort of communication you indulge in. No one has the time or inclination to do so. Instead, be straightforward without being obnoxious.
Here’s a technique for giving feedback that allows you to communicate exactly what you mean without offending people. This simple paradigm succeeds because it is objective and focuses on observed behaviors rather than personalizing comments and producing a defensive response.
This is the 3W Feedback Model from People First Productivity Solutions. Each of the three W’s symbolizes a straightforward procedure (pictured above). Follow these steps in order, and keep each one brief and to the point.
What: Give a detailed description of the scenario. Your description should be based on your personal observations rather than speculation or hearsay. At the start, use “I” instead of “You.”
Why: Explain how what you’ve seen has affected you. If there isn’t a major impact or a reason why this is important, then don’t bother with the input.
Way: Describe what kind of positive reinforcer you’d like to see. Be succinct once more.
- MAKE PUBLIC SPEAKING A HABIT
Although public speaking can be intimidating, there is no better method to improve your communication abilities than to participate in public speaking events.
Whether speaking to a large group or one-on-one, great communicators are able to express their emotions accurately. Speaking in front of a group on a regular basis will highlight your strengths and limitations while also forcing you to build excellent communication skills.
- PAY SPECIAL ATTENTION TO NONVERBAL COMMUNICATION
Nonverbal cues and signals can help you avoid misunderstandings and show interest to those around you. When interacting with someone in a professional context, pay attention to your facial expressions and body language.
The first impression you create on someone is influenced by your nonverbal cues. When meeting someone for the first time, maintaining eye contact, limiting hand motions, and maintaining decent posture goes a long way.
- CONSTANTLY ENQUIRE FOR FEEDBACK
It’s quite OK to seek honest feedback on your communication abilities from coworkers. Asking your peers or subordinates for feedback on how to improve your communication skills might help you have a better understanding of how you come across in the workplace. Develop an openness to hearing other people’s perspectives and develop stronger bonds with your employees and counterparts.
- DEFINE STRATEGIES TO ACHIEVE PURPOSE
Defining and communicating an organizational plan that is in line with your mission. People want to know that they are important to you. They want to know how their individual efforts contribute to the organization’s mission.
It’s up to you, as the leader, to show them how each piece of the puzzle fits together in a way that moves your company forward. Clearly convey short- and long-term objectives.
This encourages multiple divisions and project teams to set defined milestones, which help the organization achieve its overall objectives. Failure to do so could cost you a lot of money.
Clarity in communication is one factor that cuts across all spheres of life, it is important to be clear, and precise with whatsoever information you need to pass across so as to avoid misunderstanding. The more significant something is, the more times it must be stated. As soon as another message or two is added to the mix, your message will be lost.
Furthermore, most people need to repeat what they’ve heard or learned in order to recall and absorb it. You may feel like you’re over-communicating, but chances are you’re just reiterating and clarifying what you’ve already said. Also, there are various modes of communication that can aid in clarity, these include E-mail, Voice mail, Video conferences, webinars, In-person to a group, One-on-one communication, etc.
There are various options, and the message should dictate which medium you use. If you’re sharing something that’s easy, straightforward, and informational only, always go with the easiest and most efficient.
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