Please note the figure above which shows the healthy cycle of communication. A message is prepared for the listener(s) and then conveyed to the listener. The listener should be able to unpack the message and interpret what was intended to communicate. Once understanding is attained the listener can now relay feedback and continue the cycle of communication. You capability as a leader will always be limited by your ability to communicate to those you are leading. Even the most natural speaker can be a poor leader if they do not circumvent the barriers to effective communication. Some of these barriers are listed below.
ADVICE: The key to effective communication is knowing your audience. Good leaders can successfully present the same information differently depending on their audience. The more effectively you can put yourself into the receiver’s position, the more successful communication will be.
If you find yourself having problems communicating effectively you may want to consider making some of the changes below.
Develop good listening skills– Learn to stop talking and listen. You may not have the perfect solution to every problem, but be willing to hear from those who you lead.
Encourage 2-way communication, Be aware of language and meaning– Be careful with words and terms that can be interpreted differently by different groups of people, maintain credibility.
Be sensitive to senders or receiver’s perspective– This is huge. Do not assume everyone sees the world as you do. Try to empathize with those you lead.
Follow-Up– Sometimes you must convey information to your subordinates more than once to ensure it is completely comprehended.
Regulate Information Flows– Having a message flowing from multiple sources can sometimes cause confusion, especially if the information is not the same.
Understand the richness of media– Sometimes it is best to say some things in person and sometimes other means of communication may be more appropriate. Knowing the difference matters.
By Kevin Dancy Follow @jdrock