The very first thing you need to do to become a great communicator is to put yourself in another person’s shoes and think about how that person processes information. What questions do they have? What are they curious about? Why should they listen to you?
Many times we get so caught up with the act of sharing a message with others to the point where we don’t think about HOW to share that message so that people are receptive to it. You must think about the how, so that what you say does not fall on deaf ears.
Start by practicing what you’re going to say. Check your tone, timing and perceived intentions, because these all play a role and how you will be received.
Envision your desired outcome. What do you want people to do, say, or think after they have received your message? Do you feel that how you presented your message when you practiced will produce the desired outcome in a real-life situation? Why or why not?
When you communicate with people it’s important that you listen just as much as you talk. Let them know that their ideas are important, and their feedback is appreciated. Use a friendly approach, and treat everyone like you know them personally.
Don’t start a conversation with a “know-it-all” attitude. That’s a sure way to turn people off. Instead, brainstorm ideas with others, and show interest in their comments and suggestions. This promotes constructive conversation and trust.
Another powerful way to improve your communication skills is to smile as often as possible. This simple gesture will make you more approachable, which allows people to feel more comfortable around you.
The choice is yours.