Communication is a fundamental that is essential to our day to day life. Whether it’s body language, verbal, or written, communication can strengthen or diminish our message. Therefore, Communicating To Be Understood, requires one to have a full understanding of their audience so the message is received.
Provide your audience with the necessary details that impact them. Do not overwhelm your audience with an excess of information. People can only interpret and process so much information at a time. Too much information can add confusion. This can result in repeated follow up after you have delivered your message. Take the time to practice a speech, proof read a document and seek out feedback from your peers to deliver an effective message with confidence.
Communication has many layers and requires a lot of practice unfortunately. Establishing a rapport and genuine connection with your peers, direct reports, and customers helps tremendously.
I learned a valuable lesson on communication in one of my first leadership roles. It was the heart of the selling season at my previous employer and we had accumulated many broken or damaged bagged goods such as top soil, mulch, and cow manure. I took it upon myself to direct my team to “pull the broken bags and move them to a primary location for immediate sell through. Without following up with my team to clarify expectations and seek any feedback, I left for the day. The next morning, I received a welcoming message from my store manager, which was accompanied by beautiful photo of a 12-foot mountain of broken bags. To my complete displeasure, my team had followed the communication I had given to the letter. My lesson learned was use multiple types of communication to convey a message and always provide immediate follow up to clarify how your message was received.
Communication can be a strength or weakness depending on how it is delivered. Consistent and honest communication delivered in a kind and professional manner will garner the respect of one’s peers as well as one’s direct reports. A person that I feel strongly demonstrates this fundamental is Lisa Stacks. Despite her workload, Lisa takes the time to provide clear and concise direction and provides timely follow up to ensure her message was clearly received. Communicate To Be Understood is a fundamental that cannot be forgotten and will determine your ability to achieve long term success.
CSM/Famous Supply Columbus