What’s In a Conversation? Bridging the Workplace Communication Gap

Highways Agencys Images are protected by copyright. This Image cannot be used without a license agreement. You must comply with the license applicable to the reproduction of this Image. Terms and Conditions at www.photos.highways.gov.ukWhen working in teams, communication is everything.






Whether it is on the field, in the classroom, among your friends, or on the job, if you are working with someone, then chances are you’ll probably need to be communicating with them.

As we said before, communication is everything. More often than not, things in the office go awry when there is some form of miscommunication. Whether it is a memo someone didn’t catch, or a misunderstanding about what someone said in a meeting, miscommunication can really affect the quality and efficiency of what you do.

Unfortunately, miscommunication around the office happens a lot more than we’d like. So today, we are going to talk about the importance of communication in the workspace, and how you can start communicating effectively. Take a look below:

Be direct. When speaking to your colleagues, don’t beat around the bush. One of the biggest mistakes you can make is not saying what really needs to be said. In turn, projects can get backed or worse, not done properly, which is a huge waste of time for you, your co-workers, and the company over all.

That being said, you don’t have to be brutally honest when you are being direct with your colleagues. Try you best to be tactful and approach your co-workers in a way that shows you are still engaging them at their level. In turn, they won’t feel threatened when it comes to actually doing work, or spiteful that you approached them in the first place, saving you the headache of any unnecessary tension.

Be clear. Though they might sound the same, being clear and direct are actually two different things. You can be direct by telling someone to do exactly what needs to be done, but in order to be clear, you need to explain to them how and why the task should be completed in that matter. Making sure that everyone has a clear understanding of the project or task will help to ensure that things are getting done properly and efficiently.

Think in specifics. One way to help you be both clear and direct in your communication is by making sure you are verbalizing the specific details of the project or task. Don’t be afraid to mention specific deadlines or any other crucial details about the project. Don’t be afraid of reminding your colleagues what needs to be done. Sure there is a possibility of offending their competence, but if you approach them in a tactful manner that shows you are simply giving them a helpful reminder and not barking out commands, then chances are they will understand the situation perfectly.

Be open and listen. Another part of effective communication is your openness and willingness to listen to others. Communicating is just as much about listening to others as it is about speaking to them. So when someone has an idea or criticism, don’t shut them down right away simply because they are disagreeing with you. You always need to make sure you can put yourself in other people’s shoes. Think of how you would feel if someone shut down your idea or simply dismissed something you had to say. Try to make sure you give everyone the same chance you would want.

Think before you speak. In order to execute a conversation directly and clearly, you need to think about what you want to say before you actually say it. Having an idea sketched out in your head before you explain it to others will help things go much smoother than if you were to simply go off the cuff.

Write it down. If you are the kind of person who needs to visualize your plans, then feel free to write everything down. There is nothing wrong with taking that extra step in the very beginning in order to prevent any unnecessary steps and mistakes later on.

Here at AIM Careerlink, we pride ourselves on trying to enrich the community and workplace environment by helping individuals develop their skills and progress their careers. Let us know what you think about our tips by connecting with us on Facebook or Twitter. We’d love to hear from you!

photo credit: Heartfelt Discussions via photopin (license)

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