Communication is key. Strong communication skills will not only advance your career, but enhance your everyday life as well. Review AthLife’s top seven communication skills, along with the highlighted articles, to learn how to improve your own communication.
Greek philosopher, Epictetus famously wrote, “ We have two ears and one mouth so we can listen twice as much as we speak.” Listening is a key component to successful relationship building. From a business standpoint, listening helps you learn your clients’ needs faster, solving their problems faster. Creating an environment where someone knows his or her voice is being heard builds trust; that trust just might translate into the sale you’ve been looking to close. Read more about this important skill in Don’t talk...listen.
2. Be Professional
So much of our communication today is in written form. Fact is, writing skills are more a part of your brand than ever before. One significant way a brand is expressed is through an email address. Make sure it is professional and represents your brand well. Do not forget about all of the other less formal writing you do everyday. Twitter, Instagram and Facebook reveal your ability to communicate professionally and are just as searchable as your LinkedIn profile. If you are looking for some additional ways to tighten up your communication, please check out email etiquette 101.
3. Check Spelling and Grammar
Proper spelling and grammar communicates attention to detail. Giving your attention to this key element affects your brand and therefore your wallet. There are several tools to help you improve spelling and grammar. It’s just a matter of using them.
4. Be a Great Networker
You don’t have to love big crowds and small talk to be a great networker. Perhaps typical networking techniques are difficult or uncomfortable for you. You will need to develop strategies that work for you. Like with most things, it is important to remember that one size does not fit all for networking.
5. Stay Connected
It is important to stay connected with your network, whether you are looking for work or not. Keeping the lines of communication open will help to ease the awkward feelings when you are looking for work and need to reach out. This is easier than ever with LinkedIn, and there is nothing like picking up the phone and asking how the family is doing.
6. Check your Non-Verbals
Research has shown that nonverbal cues have a greater impact than your verbal message when a first impression is created. Your body movements, facial expressions, and overall appearance say more about you than your words do. Be self-aware and ask for feedback if needed.
7. Always Show Gratitude
Gratitude can be a powerful professional motivator, but it can also help build stronger relationships with your colleagues resulting in better communication and outcomes. It can have a positive effect on your job performance, networking opportunities, future references, and overall interactions with colleagues. Showing gratitude can be as easy taking the time to say thank you to your colleague for their help on a project, acknowledging their assistance during a staff meeting, or sending an email or personal note to their boss to show your appreciation.