How Well do we Really Communicate with Others?

Communication between co-workers happens constantly and seemingly automatically, however it’s not always that simple. Individuals do need to express their feelings or needs, but how they are being received and processed by the other(s) is key. Communication is  important to showing our personality, individuality, building rapport and relationships, and asking for what we need. But how we communicate is the most critical part – whether verbally or via email.

Some important factors to consider in verbal communication are:

Close-up of young women brainstorming during meetingHow is my tone?

Am I being clear?

How is my body language and facial expressions?

Am I providing personal space when speaking?

Is this the right time for certain conversations? Am I able to gauge that this is bad timing for the other person?

What is my volume level?

Communication by email can be difficult since it may be based on interpretation. A good tip to remember when emailing is: if you would not want to see your words on the front page of a newspaper, it probably should not be said. Think about this before you hit “send.” Another factor to remember is that punctuation and choice of words can be misinterpreted. Never use all caps or a very large font size in an email – this can be seen as yelling at the other person.

An email should be a quick message that is clear and to the point. For example: “Can you please process this order for me? Thank you.” A message that requires more information or details probably warrants a verbal conversation. Phone conversations should also be treated as though you were face-to-face with the person. Smiling through the phone will give the best impression.

Want to know more? Check out these helpful tips to further improve your communications skills.