Effective Communication – Clarity and Impact

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We communicate with one another all day, every day. We can not avoid it. It's been noted that you can not not communicate!

Communication is the tool by which people exchange thoughts, experiences, and ideas. It's the foundation on which all political, social, and business endeavors rest. Given this fact of life, it becomes apparent that the person who excels at communication will excel in all of those areas related to communication: teamwork, managing people, building products and services, and interacting with customers.

You have probably worked with people who suffered from inadequate communication skills. You may have been confused or frustrated when you worked with them, because you were unsure what was happening or what they meant to convey to you. But try not to be too critical; few people have the gift of remarkable communication skills and not enough people have been educated in the essentials of effective communication. In fact, you can probably recall a time where you had trouble conveying your thoughts or feelings to someone you were speaking with!

Since communication is a requirement in every business setting, mastering more effective communication techniques can only improve our work relationships and allow us to spend more time focusing on the important aspects of work, rather than correcting wasteful and unnecessary miscommunication.

Clarity and Impact

Communication starts with the message to be communicated. The message can be simple: "I would like this report done by Friday." It can be complicated: "Given that the rate of customer attrition and new customer recruitment are mismatched we will need to revisit our sales strategy to solicit better qualified customers and allow low-value customers to more easily seek a competitor." Either way, a clear message is essential since it is the primary focus of the exchange.

The message is then sent by a sender to a receiver through a medium . For example, a speaker (sender) may address an audience (receivers) by speaking at a podium through a public address system (medium). Or an employee (sender) may send an email (medium) to a customer (receiver) about a new product features.

You can see how serious a clear message is. If the sender is unsure of the message, how can the receiver possibly decipher the intention? Furthermore, any medium that reduces the amount of context (such as vocal inflection, tone, facial features, and pacing) can only make communication less clear.

The most important aspect of communication, therefore, is the clarity of the message .

The clarity of a message is enhanced or detracted from depending on the nature of the delivery: the tone, the demeanor, the emphasis, and so on. The most impactful messages are those which are not only clear, but are delivered with congruent tone. If I say "I'd love to see a movie with you this Friday," in an unenthused, disinterested tone, the receiver of my message will at the very least question my sincerity and possibly attribute intentions I do not mean. Realizing that it is more often how you say that what its impact will allow you to consciously support your message with an accurate, impactful delivery.

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