• April 2, 2019

Communicating Effectively

Communication always has been and will continue to be one of our most important life skills. Proficiency in all forms of communication will enhance your professional and personal lives. In order to communicate effectively with your team, keep in mind the following practices from Valentine Belonwu’s article “20 Ways to Communicate Effectively With Your Team.”

Every day you have the advantage of interacting with others face-to-face. Before you begin, create a receptive atmosphere with your verbal and nonverbal communication. Even if the message is serious, you don’t want to come across as overly intense. Tension will take energy away from what’s important. Your passion and emotions can be displayed not only through your words but also through your body language. Keep in mind how your posture or eye contact can affect a conversation. Face-to-face meetings can have a strong impact on overall communication. They keep everyone motivated and on the same page. Ask for feedback after your meeting is complete. This will ensure that everyone understood your message and any misunderstandings can be cleared up for the whole group.

Emails are best for when you don’t need an immediate answer. They still convey an important message, but it won’t take the person who is expected to answer away from their current work.

One-on-one meetings are helpful in sharing a message that is deemed for one person. You will often have informal one-on-one meetings with store managers or owners. Remember to maintain eye contact and positive body language.

With so many things happening at once in our line of business, it’s easy to get overwhelmed and pass on negativity to others. Before you communicate something vital to a project’s success, make sure you are articulate. This will ensure the most important piece of the message is front and center and that details surrounding the main topic do not take the spotlight. Be mindful in speaking slowly and clearly. In moments where the communication takes up a substantial amount of time, make sure to express gratitude to those listening.

Everything in the business world seems to change quickly, but one trait that will remain a pivotal piece to success is communication. Ace and True Value, our two biggest customers, value effective communication not only within their companies but also with vendors such as ourselves. When there are opportunities for improvement, it is usually centered around poor or lack of communication. The opposite is also true. When accolades come in about teams, it is centered around the customer always being in the loop. Sometimes we think that things are widely known, but it will always serve us and our customers to check in on progress and make those “touch bases” as effective as possible.