Communication skills are fundamental for every relationship, even social connections in the workplace. Poor communication leads to many rifts, misunderstandings, and breakdowns in one’s work environment. A leader must develop great communication skills in order to cohesively work with other people, otherwise, achieving a goal becomes ten times harder if everyone isn’t on the same page. This friction is enough to tear bonds between colleagues and build resentment in the work environment which can negatively affect one’s work performance. A leader is someone who people should want to work with. This requires a mutual understanding. To improve communication skills, a leader can practice several things.
A leader should not be too prideful to ask questions. Fear of appearing ignorant or unqualified to lead may be one of the reasons why some leaders are afraid to ask other people questions, however, leaders should be humble if they want to engage with their team. It’s not about how much a person knows but the ability one has to integrate new ideas. The only way one can truly generate fresh ideas or better plans is to bounce ideas off others. An open dialogue should be fostered so that everyone has the opportunity for their voice to be heard and words to be understood.
Waiting for Answers
When making inquiries of any kind, a leader should conduct themselves with a lot of patience. It is quite natural for the human mind to want to fill in the blanks. However, being impatient for answers can lead to wrongful assumptions which can lead to even bigger issues with the objective at hand. Hence, it is pertinent to ask many questions, and also wait for them to be answered. If one is still unsure about a particular topic, then more questions should be posed until a full comprehension is met. This significantly minimizes misunderstanding and misrepresentation in communication.
Encouraging Individual Thought
Some people opt for being “yes men” to avoid potentially putting their job at risk. So, they only tell a person the things they think they want to hear instead of the truth. These limitations cripple the productivity, growth, and expansion of a business/project. Everyone is entitled to their own opinion, especially seeing as their expertise may reside in completely separate domains. Leaders should encourage a community where people feel that they can respectfully express their ideas even if it opposes the ideas of their leader.