With the advent of technology, there has been a decline of personal communication skills.
People have been dependent on technology that interpersonal skills are not being prioritized.
However, this is still a skill worth learning.Today, we learn how to reconnect when we talk.
People are very busy nowadays. It can be quite a hard to connect, so it’s a challenge to be able to engage.
We can make contact but are we really connecting? How do you make people stop and really, really listen?
People will listen if it’s important to them. If they find value in what you have to say they will stop.
The thing is, people have short attention span nowadays. You should know how to connect and what to do when that time comes. When the window of opportunity opens, you have to do it. How?
Each individual has their own needs – even when communicating. So when we are with contact with people, their needs should be the one that is highlighted – not us.
Sometimes we inadvertently lead the focus back to us – we become distracted. The focus is taken away from them and that moment we have lost them. How do we avoid this situation?
- Be respectful.
- Allow the individual time to absorb the details.
- Focus on their feelings.
- Avoid going off-topic.
- Don’t get distracted with your phone, laptops, gadgets, etc. Don’t pause to use your gadgets while talking to them.
- Take not of body language. Note the small signs that indicate discomfort.
We listen – but do we really listen? Let us explain that further. We hear what they say but do we really get what they really mean? The intention can get lost in the sea of words, so we should be discerning.
- What part do they keep on repeating? The mere fact that they mention it a lot means it’s a real concern.
- What do they emphasize on? This indicates what their priorities as well.
You can clarify this to the individual by repeating it to them. “Just for clarification, the concern is….” – for example. However, you have to moderate the situation, so the concerns won’t take over the whole conversation.
Sometimes conversations go wrong. We can lose control of the situation because we focused on ourselves more. We can’t predict how conversations go and it’s not always smooth. It happens, so we have to deal with it. What can we do?
- You can’t control what they say – but you can control your reaction. When something mentioned incensed you – try to be calm.
- Acknowledge your mistakes, and correct it right away.
- When the people involved in the conversation is upset – adapt to the situation.
- It is tempting to control the situation by taking the discussion to yourself but allow people to talk also.
We have a lot of things to say. So many things in so little time. We want cover as much so the tendency is to send them all out as much as we can.
Is this the right way? How do we send out messages effectively? This will overwhelm the people with information. How can we go through this better?
When ideas are accompanied by visual aids, we are more likely to retain the information. You can literally picture what is it all about. How can we still make this more effective?
- Use easy to understands charts and graphs. Use before and after for comparison.
- Use presentation slides effectively. Don’t use too many words per slide. Don’t let the content be forgotten by using too much animation either.
The Power of Social Media
We can’t deny how social media influences are daily lives. Going to social media would surely get your message across as people are on it daily but are you doing it effectively? How do you not come off as annoying in social media?
Keep your posts simple. Use easy to understand words and ideas. Give it a personal touch. Don’t overdo it.
A fair warning though, double check before posting. There’s an option to edit but there’s the possibility that people have seen the post prior editing.
People can do screen capture in that period prior to edit or even deletion. Once posted, you can never take it back. So be careful with what you post.
Try to structure your message in threes. People subconsciously absorb ideas and concepts when they are simplified in threes.
- Driving Results
The ability to influence is a skill. However, the ability to be able to convince people fast is another matter. That’s what we have been driving at the whole article, how to influence in that short span of time given to us.
However, there a difference on how you arrive at your result. There’s a big difference between manipulation and influencing. Of course, we want the people to decide because they want to. How do we do that?
How You Sound
Check how you deliver your statements. As they say people treat you based on how you carry yourself. Be timid, and expect people to feel not convinced.
It’s important how you set the tone when you are presenting. When you sound decisive, people will feel more confident in what you have to say.
Check the words you use. When you deliver a statement, just deliver it. When you follow it, with a question asking for the person’s confirmation (for example, “isn’t it?”), it doesn’t really exhibit confidence.
Starting your sentences with “perhaps, I feel, I’m not certain but….” – it’s not cutting it. How can they feel confident in you when you, yourself is not confident with what you are saying.
Do you find it difficult to participate in conversations at times? Do you feel like you can’t contribute much to the discussion? When you don’t talk – obviously, people won’t be able to listen to you.
A great way to go around this – is to be prepared. Review the points of discussion. Do your research. When you study beforehand, you’ll be more confident in participating. When you understand what you are going to say, you are more likely to contribute to the conversation.
Commitment is when you transfer the ownership, people fill the continuity. They feel responsibility – they are committed.
When they feel things are forced upon them, the results aren’t the same. That’s not commitment for them, so it is imperative that they feel that they are the ones who decided on this.
To encourage others to commit, one way is to look for people who are known as influential. Getting trusted people to endorse, is one of the best ways to make people commit as well.
To sum this all up, there is still hope in increasing one’s interpersonal skills. We can improve in how we communicate in the short span of time allotted to us.
We should learn to connect by focusing what is important to our audience. Express our thoughts clearly and effectively. Finally, drive people to commit and see the results.