Sanjana is a recruiter at a big corporation. Throughout the year, she receives multiple job applications. She uses an elimination process removing all applications that don’t meet the basic criteria. Additionally, she looks at the grammar, tone and language used in application emails, resumes and cover letters.
It’s no secret that communication is one of the most important aspects of the business world. In this scenario, even the slightest typo or grammatical error can affect an application. If you want to strengthen your professional communication, read on to explore the guiding principles of effective communication.
An Introduction To Communication
Communication is the key to a successful interpersonal relationship. Whether you’re making new friends or working with a new manager—communication skills help more than just exchange information. It helps understand the intention and emotion behind that information. In its most basic form, communication is the act of exchanging information through signs, symbols and language. Actively strengthening your communication skills plays an important role in personal and professional development. Here is a list of key communication skills that can earn your audience’s attention, trust and respect.
One of the most fundamental components of communication, active listening is about giving the speaker adequate time to explore their thoughts and feelings. As an active listener, you don’t interrupt the speaker. Instead, you ask thoughtful questions to show that you’re engaged.
Improving verbal communication and presentation requires a lot of practice as the primary goal is to convince your audience of your ideas, thoughts and opinions. You need to articulate your message clearly and concisely. Avoid using technical words and tailor the information to the audience you’re speaking to.
Purposeful writing is an important component of business communication. The ability to write clearly and concisely is a powerful skill as it helps create convincing emails, thorough reports and effective client proposals. Written communication gives you more time to craft your message.
In work environments, one of the primary goals of communication is convincing someone of your viewpoints and ideas. To become a convincing communicator, you need to understand someone’s expectations. Use it to influence them to pursue an idea, decision or action.
Body language plays a major role in communication as different facial expressions, posture and gestures have meanings attached. Besides paying attention to your own body language, read other people’s non-verbal cues. Tailor your conversation according to the positive or negative body language of your audience. For example, if someone looks away and disinterested, it’s best to give them their space.
Improving your communication skills not only helps convey information better, it has the power to impact the way others view us personally or professionally.
What Are The Principles Of Communication?
Not all communication is good communication. No communication is sometimes better than poor communication. Effective communication isn’t only about being clear and concise, but also providing a space to feel safe and comfortable. There are some basic principles of communication that enhance the quality of the process.
Principle Of Clarity
It’s easy to misinterpret information when there’s no clarity. You should be clear about your idea or message by wording it in such a way that your audience understands what you want to convey. Understand your audience’s expectations and add or remove irrelevant details accordingly.
Principle Of Attention
One of the most important principles of communication, the principle of attention is about drawing your receiver’s attention to your message. In addition to helping them understand the meaning of your message, it helps your audience engage with the information better. For example, you send out an email for a team meeting and attach an agenda. Your audience is likely to come prepared and engage in meaningful discussions.
Principle Of Consistency
In the workplace, you develop healthy habits through repetition and consistency. Similarly, one of the principles of business communication—consistency—states that communication should be consistent with an organization’s plans, programs and policies. If your messages conflict with existing policies, then you won’t be able to implement them successfully. This will impact the effectiveness of an organization.
Principle Of Timeliness
Good communication is time-bound. To show your message is meaningful, you need to deliver it on time. For example, follow-up emails in a job application process help your candidacy. It shows the recruiter you’re interested in the role and the organization. You need to send your follow-up email within 24-48 hours after the interview to show that you’re serious about your application.
Principle Of Adequacy
The information you share with your receiver should be complete and adequate in every respect. There shouldn’t be any room for confusion. Too little or too much information can affect the communication process. Make sure that your receiver can process and understand the information. If you’re able to deliver your message using a few words, avoid providing too many details.
Principle Of Feedback
One of the top principles of communication, feedback helps understand if your receiver has understood the meaning of the message you were trying to convey. For example, during in-person conversations, you can observe the facial expression of your listener. If they maintain eye contact and continue to respond, it means that they’re interested in carrying the conversation forward.
Principle Of Informality
People often think that formal communication is the only way to exchange information in the workplace. However, informal communication is equally important. There are several challenges that formal communication can’t solve alone. For example, a manager resorts to informal team-building activities (such as games) for effective rapport-building among team members.
These guiding principles of communication will help you focus only on relevant details and minimize any chance of confusion. You’ll learn to deliver your message confidently and effectively.
Understanding The Principles Of Business Communication
Effective communication is essential for overall professional development. Many jobs require strong communication skills because interpersonal relationships help to drive business goals and growth. When people communicate effectively, there’s trust and increased cooperation and collaboration. What are the principles of effective communication in the business world?
Having A Goal
The first step is to determine what you want to get out of your communication and what you want your receivers to do. Positioning yourself as a thought leader who encourages others to take action is an effective way of going about it. Craft your communication according to the goal you want to achieve.
In the professional world, we don’t usually get a second chance. Therefore, you need to be cohesive from the beginning. To do so, outline your key points or goals; this will further help arrange your thoughts and achievable outcomes. The more clarity you gain, the easier it’s to communicate information.
Being Visually Compelling
Humans comprehend information in multiple ways; chief among them is visual representation. If you want to capture your audience’s attention, visual representation of data such as flowcharts can enhance the quality of the communication process. This is why many professionals rely on PowerPoint presentations while pitching their ideas. Visual depictions are immensely powerful in convincing someone of your thoughts and ideas.
One of the lesser-known principles of effective communication is minimalism. The professional world places great emphasis on time and the less time it takes, the better it is. To manage both your and your audience’s time better, avoid using any irrelevant information or repeated details that shift the focus from your main points. For example, client emails should be direct and you need to list the agenda upfront. Less is more!
Communication is a broad area that’s constantly evolving. To keep up with the changing needs, expectations and rules, you need to keep an open mind. Staying curious will encourage you to continue the learning process. Strengthen your reading habits, talk to people and mentors who can help you out and never assume you know everything. Check for trending styles and formats and keep yourself updated about shifting demands.
These principles of communication should help you focus your effort on personal and professional growth. Continue to learn, evolve and pursue a path to career success.
You’ll encounter various forms of communication wherever you go. As the world adjusts to a new normal with increasing virtual communication, you’ll need to adapt to the changes as well. Communication is a large topic that’ll continue to expand in scope and meaning. If you want to keep up with the times and leave a lasting impression on your audience, Harappa’s Speaking Effectively course will help you deliver ideas with precision. Learn to speak concisely using the PAM (Purpose, Audience and Message) Framework. The Non-verbal Cues framework will help you master different body language techniques. Get skilled at communicating effectively!
Explore Harappa Diaries to learn more about topics such as Introduction To Visual Communication, What Is Internal Communication, How To Improve Communication Skills & The Art Of Storytelling to deliver ideas with precision.
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