We all have that one friend who shines everywhere! He/she may not be the best in academics but outshines every studious student there! It happens in job interviews where a candidate with excellent academic results is turned down, but an average student is selected. The reason is simple! Your results don’t matter, but your way of presentation does! Something that every student, be it any field of study, should excel – Communication Skills
What is Communication?
Communication is something that can be considered as an example of the myth of evolutions. Using hands and gestures since ancient period, one must learn the definition of Communication as the process of conveying a message (or emotion) in writer or oral form. Communication is something that establishes and modifies relationships. Haven’t people advised you to “talk it out” when you fought with your bestie?
The art of sharing or expressing views is not easy for many. A person with bad communication skills appears as a social common joke! Along with several problems life throws them, they get estranged from the society. Good communication skills are signals for people to approach them, be comfortable around them! It’s essential at your workplace, school or wherever you are! Effective communication or verbal skills are something people ought to practise. For one’s ability to be liked by people and earn respect from people depends on his skills of speech. And it can all be developed, in simple ways:
1. Believe in your beliefs
“To effectively communicate we must realize that we all are different in the way we perceive the world and use this understanding as a guide to our communication with others.”
– Anthony Robbins
One of the many problems people face is shouting out their opinions! The fear of being judged prevents them from voicing out their thoughts. This is where the correction is to be made. You ought to believe in what you believe. Always remember that if an incident occurs with 20 witnesses you would get 20 different perspectives (among which either one or none would be true). Being wrong in opinions is not wrong! Wrong is when you change your opinions for others to have a good judgement about you!
2. Honest but be sensitive
Okay, voice out your thoughts with no fear and with utmost honesty but be sensitive to others’ feelings. Always keep in mind that your opinions might hurt others. So the way you present things should be in such a soft and patient way that the other person would get what you meant!
3. Be a good listener; the best communication skills
The main problem with communication is that we do not listen to understand, we listen to reply! Completely wrong! Never think of a reply during the listening process. When you have a conversation with a person, that person must be the only person in the world. Your concentration ought to be in the words he/she says and the message they want to convey!
4. Practice makes man perfect : Exercise effectively
Practice makes man perfect! Majority of people who lack communication skills screams the problem of language. It might be the fluency in the language or the fear of grammar mistakes. The perfect way is practising the language whenever you can. Use the language among your friends and family and try to learn new words and phrases! But never use a word unless you’re sure about the meaning it conveys. Usage of right word is an equally important skill for a good speaker!
5. Maintain eye contact
This is one of the most important points! Never stare at your shoes or at the person standing far away when you’re conversing with someone. Always maintain eye contact. A person who never locks eye is considered to be nervous and uncomfortable!
The T technique is an effective way to maintain eye contact. Imagine a T drawn between the eyebrows of the person and stare at the joint of T. Another way to fix your eyes is staring at one of the eyes of the person before you and changing the focus to the next eye after a while. This makes the other person feel that you’re indeed into the conversation!
6. Gestures are important
Standing stiffly as a pole doesn’t make you look good! Always make hand gestures while you convey a message. The enthusiasm of yours is to be visible in your face and actions! And the same will be reflected in the actions of the person before you!
7. Body language
The eye contact, gestures and everything are required only when people approach you for conversations. For that, your posture must be welcoming. No one would want to talk to a person who stands with his arms crossed in a social gathering! Hunched shoulders, head down and tapping your foot is just another few negative points people would note about you! Relax your arms and let it fall by your side! Hold your head high up and wear a smile. Anyone who looks at you would want to say a Hi!
8. Slow down your speech
Having a good enunciation is necessary but so is a slow speech! One who rushes to finish a sentence is considered unconfident and nervous! Never forget that whatever you speak is to be heard and understood by people before you. So keep the pace and convey every word correctly so that the person before you can grasp it!
9. Work on your voice
Your voice is really important! A high whiny voice irritates people! A soft-spoken voice isn’t recommended! One should have a voice like that of an RJ! You should have variations, ups and downs, in your pitch during your conversation making the highlights high pitched! And also it’s essential to note that your tone matches with your words and facial expressions.
The first thing that every person should overcome to develop their communication skills is fear of being judged. There will be times when you would speak up blunders or make major grammar mistakes! But to err is human! We all learn from mistakes! So the first thing to take care is the feeling of what people might think when you mess up!
Overcoming your fear, develop your language, practise it regularly and work on your voice and body language! Learn new words, try new tones, maintain eye contact and wear a smile – one can always be good at communication!