Tips For Success

Why is Effective Communication Important?

by robertr

January 4th, 2010
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Rousseau claimed spoken words were the greatest way to communicate.  Written words were inferior because their author could not always be there to explain what he or she meant when writing them.  However, the postmodernist philosopher, Derrida, argued otherwise, claiming neither version of language superior to other in their ability to provide effective communication.  People still misunderstand each other through spoken language.  Have you and a friend listened to the same conversation and gone away with widely varying interpretations of what was said?  That was essentially the point Derrida wanted to make.  In fact, he claimed writing was actually more true the essential mutable quality of language.

Such intellectual philosophizing does not mean learning how to try and communicate effectively is not important.  If anything, knowing that speech is not a perfect vehicle for thoughts and ideas is part of the initial step in improving communication.  Figuring out how to communicate ideas, whether in business or other interpersonal situations, requires constant practice.  Part of the way you can continue to evolve as a successful communicator is to learn how to better organize your thoughts.  Thoughts are often a jumble of different things, but learning how to control them can improve how you articulate them.  Some companies and schools actually bring in yoga teachers or others with experience in meditation to help soothe stress: it also has the side benefit making you a calmer thinker, helping you to be better convey yourself.  In a sales job—or any job for that matter—learning how to express yourself efficiently can make or fracture a deal and help or hurt build important client relationships.

Further, good communication is not about rivalry.  It is not a competitive sport where he who says the most things wins.  Trying to make another person see how great your idea will not charm anyone in the business world: business is about collaboration, and attempting to convert people to your perspective is harmful.  Business works best when people in a company contribute different ideas and different points of view, fertilizing a problem with copious possible solutions.  When conquer a conversation with an idea—not matter how great it is—people resent you, and brainstorming sessions often come to a halt.  Others will feel their ideas, and thusly their individuality, trampled upon.  Though there is not guarantee everyone will be fond of you at work, you can help to make yourself respected by respecting the ideas of others.  After all, learning how to communicate effectively also requires learning how to learn to listen effectively too.  Good communication helps build strong business ties with fellow employees, with bosses, and with clients.  It ensures a thriving company.

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