Practicing effective communication is not reduced to a simple exchange of information. In fact, effective communication involves a effort and reinforcement of innate abilities or that can be exploited. You also have to take into account some variables such as language, culture, time differences and available technology. All of this can influence communication within companies.
Having poor communication produces unwanted effects. According to a study done by the The Economist Intelligence Unit, respondents stated that poor communication led to the following consequences:
- 52% had more stress
- 44% failed to complete a project
- 31% lowered his morale
- 18% lost its sales
Under this scenario, It is important to have effective communication between members of the company. This is how you will not only avoid misunderstandings. Projects will also be completed, business objectives will be met, and the members of the organization will be known more and better.
Dive into this new Ninja Excel article. Here you will discover the main scope of effective communication. We will also present concrete examples and tips that will help you enhance and exploit your skills.
What is effective communication?
Effective communication is the act of accurately exchanging and understanding a message between two or more people.. In this understanding it should not only be regarding the prayer itself. Also the receiver, You must understand the emotion, intent and purpose behind the message.
Effective communication must be able to fulfill the phrase “understand each other to be understood.”. For it, includes verbal and non-verbal, written, visual and auditory communication. It can also occur by electronic means (social networks, WhatsApp, Slack, Zoom, Meet), by telephone (audio or video call only) or by mail.
Benefits of effective communication
Some benefits of effective communication are the following:
- Effective communication improves productivity: according to McKinsey research, applying effective communication can increase productivity between 20 to 25%.
- Improves worker performance: By effectively communicating tasks and objectives in teams, there is a greater probability of their achievement.
- Reduce conflicts: speaking to reach an efficient understanding is achieved thanks to effective communication.
- Increase collaboration between areas: create channels for effective communication between areas.
What are the 5Cs of effective communication?
The 5C call is a series of tips to apply effective communication with your team. Here we present them.
This advice refers to knowing exactly what you want to communicate. The sender must know the receiver of the message, their needs and the best way to communicate it.
Forbes advises that if there is a problem to communicate, it must be done “without misunderstanding or reacting in an emotional, critical or defensive way.” Therefore, before communicating something you can ask yourself: will my message be understood? Is the message well received?
The message should be direct, simple and to the point. In fact, there is no need to get caught up in complex metaphors. Therefore, it is advisable to focus on “conveying your point as succinctly and moving the conversation forward.”
For the message to resonate deeply with the recipient, it must be persuasive and convincing. Give your point of view on the topic and listen to the other for effective feedback.
It's about listening to others, understanding the purpose of their message, and being authentically interested in what they say. “Understand where the other person is coming from, because they have needs and problems that need to be addressed,” they say from Forbes.
Be empathetic and understand the other person. Listen carefully to the other and put aside assumptions. “Having the ability to understand, recognize and appreciate how others feel is crucial to resolving conflicts. It allows you to manage changes and make difficult decisions,” they suggest from Forbes.
What are the barriers to effective communication?
There are variables that can create a barrier to effective communication. Some of them are easily circumvented, while others require greater tools or skills.. Let's review some of these barriers below. The information comes from Toppr.
The different languages, dialects and idioms are a palpable barrier to communication. Even despite speaking the same language, members of your team may use different words, as is the case with teams that speak Spanish.
For example, the word "Taco” in Mexico refers to traditional food. Meanwhile, in Chile and Colombia it is used to refer to traffic potholes and in Venezuela to refer to someone very intelligent.
People may suffer from mental or psychological disorders that prevent effective communication.. Some people may have stage fright, speech disorders, phobia, depression, etc. Therefore, it is a very important variable to consider.
Emotions play a big role in communication. If anger or frustration prevails over temperance or tranquility, the message that one person delivers to another may not be effective.
Cultural communication barriers
This barrier complements the variable of language and language. That is how In teams composed of teams from different countries, it is vital to take cultural differences into account. This is an essential opportunity to learn about other ways of life.
Organizational structure barriers
The goal of communicating a message is that everyone can understand the same information and intention. All messages or communications must be easy and clear. However, linguistic, cultural and knowledge influences can cause the same message to be interpreted in different ways.
If a company is not equipped with the necessary tools, communication will be difficult. This is relevant in hybrid work environments.
8 tips to improve effective communication
You can train effective communication and execute it well. If that is your goal, we leave you the best advice that the Harvard School of Professional Development It gives us so that you can improve.
1. Clear and concise
Part of communication is about choosing the right words (in quality and quantity). “The key to powerful and persuasive communication, whether written or spoken, is clarity and, when possible, brevity”, they say from Harvard.
Therefore, they suggest that before speaking, It is necessary to know the audience and determine your objectives. Avoiding unnecessary words and repetition.
2. Preparation for effective communication
Know the background and form of what is going to be communicated. The idea is to anticipate the unexpected. Researching the topic and empathy are key in communication. What kind of questions will the person ask? What doubts will they have?
“Before engaging in a conversation, brainstorm potential questions, requests for additional information, or clarifications and disagreements so you are ready to address them calmly and clearly,” they say from Harvard.
3. Observe non-verbal communication
Non-verbal or kinesthetic communication can say more than words themselves. Therefore, they recommend that this type of communication supports the message and the words you use.
“If you are aware of others' body language, you may be able to adjust your communication tactics appropriately”.
4. Take care of the tone and emphasis
Tone is a factor, especially when there are conflicts in teams. For example, the same word can vary depending on the emphasis given. This includes volume, projection and intonation, as well as word choice. “In real time, it can be a challenge to control the tone to make sure it matches your intention,” they say from Harvard.
5. Practice active listening
Part of effective communication is active listening. The goal is to ensure that you hear not just the words the person says, but the entire message. To do this, pay attention to the recipient, avoid interruptions or design open questions that allow you to delve deeper into the other's opinion.
6. Develop your emotional intelligence
To communicate effectively, you must evaluate and understand your own feelings. When you are aware of how you feel, you can manage those emotions.
Empathy, active listening, maintaining an appropriate tone and using positive body language. All of these are examples of applying emotional intelligence in effective communication.
7. Develop a communication strategy
Faced with a flow of communication between many areas at work, having a communication strategy is vital. This ensures that everyone receives the right information at the right time.
8. Create a positive organizational culture
The organizational culture where you communicate, plays a vital role in effective communication. In a positive work environment, based on transparency, trust, empathy and open dialogue, communication in general will be easier and more effective.
Examples and expert tips on effective communication
How to speak in a way that people want to hear you – Julian Treasure
Motivator Julian Treasure explains how we can improve our verbal communication. Thus, we can be more effective and achieve a greater connection with the recipient. In the talk, he presents us with some useful vocal exercises and tips on how to speak with empathy.
Get comfortable being uncomfortable – Luvvie Ajayi
In this TED talk, writer and activist Luvvie Ajayi Jones talks about the importance of honesty and vulnerability in effective communication. Plus, it provides advice that will help you grow and learn in the workplace.
The surprising secret to speaking with confidence – Caroline Goyder
In this talk, Caroline Goyder offers practical advice on how we can improve our communication in the workplace. This is how we will achieve a greater connection with our team.