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How to become a better communicator at work

Estimated reading time: 2 mins

Great communication in the workplace is key. Communication will help you avoid unnecessary problems and allow your skills and contributions to shine brightly throughout the corporation.

Communication is a two way street. This means if you feel a problem with communication at your work place you can’t only look at other people. You need to look at yourself and your habits and decide what you could be doing better. This is the only way to truly become a good communicator. Different people will need to be spoken to in different ways; this is something you’ll notice only if you audit how you interact with others. Here are some general tips for developing Assertiveness and communication at work.

Don’t be personal with your criticism

Part of working with a team is making sure you deliver criticism in a positive way. When you criticize people in a personal way, you’re feedback is lost and the same old habits are repeated. The goal of feedback is for a change to happen. This will only happen if the person feels respected when they are given feedback.

On the flip side, when you get criticism make sure you’re not too sensitive or defensive. Make sure you acknowledge the person for their feedback and ask questions if you have any.

Communication depends on the situation

The room you are in, the people you are with, your job title, the other person’s job title and many more factors affect communication. You need to take all these factors into account when talking with people at work. In some cases you’ll need to be professional in other cases you’ll have the chance to be more casual. Don’t communicate the same exact way without accounting for the situation. Good communicators are flexible and operate based on the situation they observe.

You’re going to make mistakes – learn from them

When trying to become a better communicator, you’re bound to have a few bumps and awkward moments. Don’t let these mistakes force you to shy away from being a good communicator. Analyze what happened and what you can do different next time. On the same note you don’t want to over analyze ever situation you’re in. This will make communication seem like a chore to you. Just be mindful that there are always areas you can improve in when it comes to communication.

Understand communication isn’t easy for everyone

The biggest key to being a good communicator is being patient. You don’t want to jump to conclusions or jump down people’s throats for leaving details out. You always want to do your best to find out the full story. Sometimes this means being patient and drawing information out of a person. Patience will help you develop a reputation as an understanding person who is easy to talk to. You’ll also be more likely to receive patience when you make communication mistakes.

 
This post is part 17 of 22 in the series Effective Communication
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Simon is a creative and passionate business leader dedicated to having fun in the pursuit of high performance and personal development. He is co-founder of Applied Change, a Business Change consultancy based in the UK. Simon is also an Ambassador for Gloucestershire business. Simon is an Associate Member of the Chartered Institute of Professional Development.

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