September 5, 2015, by: fbgconsulting

In the course of numerous interviews and coaching, I’ve come to identify communication skills as one of the lowest in today’s world.   Regardless of level, tenure, industry or type of job this seems to prevail, making it really hard and lengthy to engage in assessment conversations. I find that most people are extremely lengthy in communicating their thoughts. They get caught up in the details. They continue to make a point even though they’ve already convinced the other party of their position.

I ‘m not sure if that is the result of the substantial amount of time people now spend on emails or texting, which surely detracts from verbal interactions. Surely attention needs to be placed on refining these skills.

Good communication skills are defined by the ability to listen and to express the ideas in a manner that others understand. Effective communication will help you connect with the rest of the world and will be reflective of who you are.

This is particularly important when people are interacting with senior individuals.   Their time is usually short as is their attention span. They have less interest in details, focusing on the big picture.

The good thing is that this can be relearned or consciously corrected once you realize you need to improve. Here are some helpful thoughts:

  • Focus on the big picture
  • The why things are happening is what really matters
  • Don’t show up with a long PowerPoint presentation
  • Practice listening (pause, reflect, allow quiet time, show you care, don’t interrupt)
  • Show empathy to what’s happening with the other party
  • Don’t lose focus of the purpose
  • Be crisp, clear and concise
  • Have a message you want them to walk away with
  • Be watchful of body language so you can react to the other person’s feelings
  • Be sure about yourself and what you say