No question about it, communication is an art. No matter how skilled or knowledgeable you are, if your communication skills are subpar, your leadership and management skills will be too.
Communication encompasses a broad spectrum: there's email, memos, reports, phone, video conferencing and what I'd like to focus on here, the old-fashioned face-to-face.
I work with many individuals who are brilliant at what they do but become baffled by the fact that their direct reports don't understand them or that their superiors are not recognizing them for promotions.
Here are five of the most common communication disconnects I see in the individuals I coach.
1) Muddled Messages:
Time is money and most people don't like to waste time sifting through an avalanche of words to figure out what you are really trying to say. I always tell my clients to figure out their bottom line in any important communication. For any message you need to relay, ask yourself this question: “If my listener remembers just one thing, what do I want them to remember.” That “one thing” is your bottom line or core message. You can then shape the rest of the communication around that bottom line. (I suggest using a mind map) It also helps to use specific language in your communication to reinforce your message. For example