14 Proven Ways to Improve Your Communication Skills
Steve Jobs inspired his employees to strive for perfect hardware products. Jack Welch mentored the senior leadership team of GE to new heights. Jeff Bezos is known for articulating the Amazon ethos clearly to employees and the world. All of these leaders possess outstanding leadership skills.
One study found that nonverbal communication accounted for 55 percent of how an audience perceived a presenter. That means that the majority of what you say is communicated not through words, but through physical cues.
To communicate clearly and confidently, adopt proper posture. Avoid slouching, folding your arms or making yourself appear smaller than you are. Instead, fill up the space you are given, maintain eye contact and (if appropriate) move around the space.
Have an “open door” policy.
Having honest dialogue with managers and CEOs is a delicate—and challeninging—situation for many employees. Some feel uncomfortable being forthright with their boss, and as a result, sugarcoat opinions or do not speak up. An “open door” policy where your employees are encouraged to bring anything to your attention is an incredibly beneficial way to motivate employees and improve communication. It builds connections and encourages meaningful conversations so you can make positive changes to your workplace. If staff are not approaching you, always remember our #1 tip: reach out to your employees periodically.
Communication isn’t just the verbal exchange of information between people. It’s also information. No matter the job, document management and knowledge sharing are vital to everyday tasks and your employees need to find files, spreadsheets, and answers, easily. Centralize all of this information in your company knowledge base. To improve workplace communication, you need to prioritize how staff finds what they need to do their jobs.
Take advantage of social media.
Social media is a powerful aid for businesses communicating with customers and prospects. It also enhances internal collaboration. Encourage employees to “like”, comment, and share interesting posts about your organization. This sparks conversations, educates employees about something they didn’t know about, and boosts morale. You can also embed your social media channels into your intranet, so employees always know what your company is sharing with the public.
Allow employees to share their interests with each other to create meaningful, work-related conversations. This is a great way to combine relationship-building with your business’s goals and philosophies.