10/29/2007

What We Have Here...


Is a Failure to Communicate:

"Think about the conversations you have throughout the course of any given day. Are all of them productive? If you’re like most people, they’re probably not. Realize that productive communication involves more than just two people talking. Communicating effectively requires planning, concentration, and consideration of others. So whether you need to talk with your spouse, hash out a problem with a friend, or land that next big business deal, here are some tips to add power and productivity to your conversations.

Tip One: Think Before You Speak...
Tip Two: Stop Talking and Listen...
Tip Three: Ask Questions...
Tip Four: Anticipate Distractions
Nothing you do will make others feel more important than giving them your full attention. Conduct your interaction in a quiet, peaceful location with a minimum of distractions. Turn off your pager and cell phone. If there are other conversations or events going on in the same room, ignore them. If an unavoidable interruption occurs, excuse yourself and return as quickly as possible. If you must end the conversation due to an unforeseen crisis, reschedule it for a later time.

Tip Five: Be Mindful of Your Volume and Tone
Your vocal tone gives the listener a snapshot of your feelings. If you want to show respect or affection, soften your tone. If you find yourself feeling impatient or angry during a conversation, listen to yourself to make sure your voice isn’t reflecting those emotions. If a conversation begins to turn into an argument, consciously lower your volume; often your listener will, too. Keep your voice calm and even whenever possible.

Tip Six: Handle Disagreements with Tact...
Tip Seven: Be Open to New Ideas...
Tip Eight: Take Notes...
Tip Nine: Watch Your Body Language...
Tip Ten: Eliminate Audible Pauses
There’s no need to fill every second of a conversation with sound. Verbal fluff (“ah,” “er,” “um,” “like,” “you know”) obscures your message and reduces your credibility. If you feel you are about to use a non-word, take a breath, hold it a moment, and then resume speaking. Use shorter sentences, or pause using silence instead of audible sounds. Becoming very familiar with your topic will help too. Practice what you want to say, but don’t sound rehearsed..."

Read more in this businessknowhow.com article from which the foregoing was quoted

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