Communication is how we send and receive messages or, in other words, the exchanging of information. Workplace communication is the process of exchanging information, both verbal and non-verbal, within an organization. Communication occurs in various forms via emails, texts, tweets, phone calls, conversations, presentations, blogs, etc. Communication can be used to share thoughts and experiences, learn and exchange information and serve customers and clients.
The three main types of communication are defined as:
- Verbal communication – the use of sounds and words to express yourself, especially in contrast to using gestures or mannerisms
- Nonverbal communication – communication without the use of spoken language which includes gestures, facial expressions, and body positions
- Written communication – involves any type of message that makes use of the written word
How your employees express themselves while communicating with customers and clients can ultimately set the tone for your business relationships.
There are many important aspects of workplace communication. Here are four important ones:
You want to be able to deliver a clear message in the shortest amount of time. Keep the information brief and simple to understand.
Pause (in verbal communication)
Pausing gives the person a moment to think about what has been said. This can help people understand the information and allow them to think of rebuttal questions or comments. It also avoids the individual from using filler words to express their point; for example, words like, uh, well, umm, etc.
When you build rapport with customers or clients, you build trust. You should find common ground and be authentic. Repeating what someone is saying demonstrates empathy, which strengthens rapport.
Listen (all aspects of communication)
Maintaining eye contact and appearing interested can greatly affect the other person’s responses. Listen to the needs of the customer or client so you are able to help them the first time. Be sure you answer all the questions asked. You want your customers or clients to feel valued and heard.
There are many ways to build your workplace communication skills. We all communicate differently, but we all want and need to communicate effectively. Check out a few of the links below for articles on ways to improve you and your employees’ workplace communication skills.