Improving communication skills
If you’ve read through job postings, you probably noticed that many companies call for individuals with strong communication skills. Effective communication skills are now generally called for as a minimum requirement. By communication skills, this includes both writing and reading. The reason for this is simple. How can you say that you’re good at your job when you can’t even communicate well with those around you?
You’re already at your job, but you want to improve in this area so you can procure more opportunities and move your way up to higher positions. Especially when the work environment today has gotten even more competitive than ever, you want to ensure that you position yourself well and competitively.
But what does it mean to have good communication? If you want to improve in this area, here are a few things to pay attention to.
1. Identify key communication problems you have
For this first step, it’s best that you heed the advice of those around you. Ask from your mentors, your co-workers, and even from your family and friends what are your problem areas in your communication skills. Take these comments proactively. This way, you’ll know where to start with improving yourself.
Most people around you, particularly those that are closest to you, are going to be more than willing to help you out. In fact, there may even be some of them that have just been waiting for the perfect opportunity to address these weaknesses.
2. Start In Social Settings
Jumping into conversations at work might seem frightening, so try to ease your way in when you’re in social settings. Yes, even at work, social skills are also important. To make work a little bit more fun, you want to learn how to interact also with your co-workers. To help you along that line, click here to learn more about the essential social skills that you must develop, especially at work.
For example, if you see your colleagues in the break-room, strike up a conversation with them about what they did this weekend. When you learn to speak more with people in a social setting, you can gain more confidence in work environments.
3. Volunteer for Communication-Oriented Tasks
You don’t have to say that you’re going to head the next major presentation, but you can offer to make the call to the software development company or the tech department the next time your team has a question about the computer. These small communication skills and efforts can help you to work your way up to bigger ones.
4. Present In Groups
If your company offers the opportunity to make presentations, consider how doing so helps you to build your communication skills and showcase your research and dedication to the rest of the employees. When you are nervous about speaking in front of a large group by yourself, find out if your team wants to present together. You can rely on each other and work to give everyone time to voice opinions.
5. Take A Course
Struggling with communication skills is a problem that many people experience, so you can take a course at a local college to improve these skills. Your job may even offer workshops or seminars to help employees improve how they communicate and ways to do it more effectively.
6. Rehearse Important Conversations
When you need to talk to someone about a serious or awkward issue, do a little bit of planning. While trying to memorize every single word as though you were performing a script can just lead to more anxiety and tension, you can write down what you want to say. By doing so, you can have a more specific idea of what you want to express when you approach the person.
7. Speak To Your Boss
Talking to your boss about your desire to improve your communication skills is a smart idea so you can get a better focus on what skills you specifically need to heighten. During this conversation, you may find that your boss thinks you’ve come a long way since you started at the company.
8. Writing Practice
Part of the way people communicate is through writing. Especially in the workplace, writing is done many times in the day. So, you must also brush up on your different written skills, particularly formal office correspondence.
Make sure you can craft an email, instant message or another form of communication thoroughly and clearly. Your messages shouldn’t be ambiguous in any way. Writing loses a lot of voice so being clear here is important. Go direct to the point and avoid too many flowering words.
If your company lacks a smart way to communicate online, see if solutions or programs like Compusmart Solutions can increase efficiency and message speeds. With writing, there are also many online editing tools that you can sign up for, such as Grammarly. Eventually, as you use these tools, you’ll also learn how to identify problem areas that you usually must work on.
If you can talk to clients, employees, and customers more conveniently, a lot of your communication writing can improve.
Through improving your communication skills at work, you can start to feel more comfortable at the business. You may also begin to take advantage of opportunities that you would have let go by in the past. Apart from that, should an opportunity come along for a better job position or an improvement in your career, you can have an edge against other qualified applicants. Whether in the workplace or outside, having good communication skills is important.
So, above all else, this is something that you should strive to master. Start by applying the tips above.