The ability to communicate with each other effectively and efficiently differentiates humans from other animals and living organisms on this magical planet. Communication is a way of transmitting one’s thoughts, emotions, ideas, and plans to another human being. It allows individuals to work in cooperation with others, towards collective goals. Multinational companies, huge organizations, and even world-leading governments are built on a strong foundation of effective communication. However, since communication exists, so do communication barriers. These barriers have different effects and are caused by different things. If one can identify these barriers, one can easily overcome them and communicate better, stronger, and clearer.
Let’s look at six easy steps that one can undertake to efficiently cross communication barriers:
- Clarifying ideas beforehand
It is extremely important—before embarking on a journey to deliver fragments of your mind to another breathing creature—to have a clear idea about what exactly one wants to communicate. Professional or formal communication, especially, has to be crisp, precise, and non-confusing. If a person is first confused about what exactly they want to communicate, the effort can go to waste. One needs to take a certain amount of time to arrive at a precise message they want to deliver. Once an individual is clear about their ideas, has written the crucial points down, the actual delivery of the message becomes a piece of cake.
- Communicating according to the need of the recipient
Every individual on this planet is unique. They have different needs, different cultures, different languages, and different world views. Before starting to communicate, one has to understand ‘who’ they are communicating to. A client may not benefit from the same executive summary managers, and CXO officers might like perusing through. On the other hand, one’s managers and colleagues will surely not like it if one’s weekly meeting report is an hour long and contains multiple briefs about product efficacy and benefits. It is essential to really ‘know’ one’s audience and prepare or choose a method of communication that best suits their needs.
- Consult with experienced professionals or acquaintances
It is always best to consult any problems one might face during communication. Learned colleagues, teachers, and educators of sorts might be able to guide individuals to achieve the best communication skills. There are various online courses from world-leading experts in communication that one might benefit from. One can also ask for guidance and opinion from seniors, mentors, or friends.
- Culminate awareness regarding non-verbal communication
Non-verbal communication is extremely important when it comes to official or even informal communication. One needs to be aware of the tone of their voice, their speaking pace, and body language. How someone uses their hands and what their posture suggests has a huge impact on the audience.
- Ensuring proper feedback
It is extremely important, for self-learning, to gather proper feedback about their performance. One can achieve this by creating a small formal survey (such as customer satisfaction surveys offered by many Cx support teams), or one can engage in an informal conversation regarding the outcome and effectiveness of the communication process. An individual needs to keep asking for feedback and work on it to avoid mistakes that were pointed out and polish skills that were found out to be effective.
- Keeping the core of the message consistent
In all communication skills, including writing skills, one important factor is the consistency of the message. If one keeps getting distracted from the primary intention of the message, they might lose the patience or attention of their audience. No one would like it if a speaker or a writer keeps droning on about unrelated things. While including examples and anecdotes is beneficial; to express the purity or severity of the message, overdoing it could bring chaos and confusion.