The essence of good communication skills
Communication is defined as the transmission or exchange of information or news, or a letter or message containing such information or news. It is the successful transmission or exchange of ideas and feelings through the connection between people or places. Good communication will ensure that the person or persons receiving the message or information understand the message being sent. Whatever medium or channel of communication you are using to convey any message, you need to know and practice good communication so that you can ensure that the people you are sending your message to will respond immediately or even favorably. The following are some basic and very practical tips for good communication skills to use in personal and professional settings.
1. Think clearly, define and decide what you are going to say. You cannot expect anyone who is going to receive your message to understand, let alone respond, to what you are going to say if you yourself do not have a clear idea of it. Planning is very important, especially if the setting is professional and you will be addressing a large group of people or a group of authorities. Thinking clearly also applies even in impromptu or everyday conversations. When you think about what you are going to say first, you are less likely to make a mistake and offend someone. And it will be more likely to convey a clear message.
2. Be aware of the occasion or environment you are in and choose accordingly how you will deliver your message or how you will deliver your communication. If you are in a professional setting, you will do well to act professional, use appropriate words without slang or informal intonations, and display good credibility by using good manners. On the other hand, if you are addressing friends, old acquaintances, or just people in a casual setting, it can be helpful to use a more cheerful and engaging tone of communication to help bring about reassurance. In casual situations, it is acceptable to use common words and even physical contact if it is allowed and appropriate.
3. Listen and ask questions. Good communication only relies solely on the main person delivering a message. It also depends on the recipient. Listening and asking questions are practices that portray one’s interest and attention to the communication taking place. No matter how good the communicator is, communication will not be effective or good if the receiver does not listen or even pay attention. Good communication is a two-way cycle of information from sender to receiver.
4. Opening. If both the communicator and the receiver are closed-minded to what the other is saying, a conflict will definitely arise. Although conflicts are often unavoidable in any communication, they can be avoided by keeping an open mind. If agreement is not possible, there is always compromise, and acceptance of the fact that different people have different opinions. If both the communicator and the receiver are open-minded, there is a good flow of ideas and information even in the differences of their natures.