Demonstrating your own communication strategy is important – whether it be in business or in your personal life. While learning more about internal communications, I asked the question: “Is communication innate, or something that can be taught?” Although communication comes more natural to some than others, it can be groomed and become something that is seemingly effortless to all.
Communication and strategy go hand-in-hand. For starters, both involve planning to an extent. The definition of strategy in and of itself is “a plan of action.” A plan of action is necessary in communication because not everyone will understand the purpose behind a message right away.
While communicating and planning, here are four tips that will ensure effectiveness:
- Take your time. Communicating effectively takes time and cannot be rushed. If you are trying to convey a message to a large or diverse group of people, not every member will hold the same perspective. Planning ahead, re-rerouting, and stopping communication plans are very common in the workplace. Confidence and courage are key while communicating, which is a product of listening and gaining knowledge.
- Be an active and empathetic listener. Oftentimes we think that communicating is all about the talking; however, communication involves listening more so than not. As you listen, you will gain more information and then be able to express said content to a wider variety of people.
- Learn from failure. Trial and error, trial and error, TRIAL AND ERROR! Failing is acceptable if one can gain something from his or her own cessations. Mistakes will be made both at home and at work, so why not embrace them? Action can be taken in order to avoid issues in communication and planning; however, sometimes knowing what NOT to do is better than knowing what TO do.
- Own your expertise. This hints toward point 1: confidence is key. Others will seek your expertise and advice in your personal and professional lives, and this is where you can shine. Be positive, adaptable, and embrace what your strengths are. This persona will allow others to take you seriously and for those around you to have faith in what you are communicating to them.
Effective and strategic communication may sound exhausting, but once a routine is in place, it will seem painless with time. Appearing confident, listening often, and taking your time will pay off in the long run.