Latest "communicating" Posts
Listening … it is the most used communication skill but is the least taught. We often assume that we are good at listening. But, are we?
Have you ever been on a conference call and realized that everyone was waiting for your response to a question you didn’t hear? Have you tried to tell someone the key outcomes of a meeting that you attended, and realized you missed out on important information (maybe, while you were handling an emergency via e-mail)?
We actually cannot listen well unless we remove the barriers to listening:
1. Multi-tasking – Also referred to as “switch-tasking” because the brain was not designed to perform two tasks simultaneously, this barrier to listening is the easiest to address. If you need to focus on something other than the conversation, make an intentional decision — you may need to reschedule a meeting, or if it is an informal exchange, you may say, “Excuse me for one moment, so I can take care of this and then give you my full attention.”
A recent participant in a BRODY training program contacted me last week via e-mail.
“I’ve been put in charge of a large project and was told to choose my own team from any departments in the organization,” she wrote. “If successful, it will be the beginning of a whole new direction for our company. I’m very excited.”
She went on to tell me that as she was still fairly new to the company, she didn’t have a title that afforded her any genuine authority. In fact, some of the colleagues she wanted for her team were far more senior than her.
The participant then asked, “Why would these new team members listen to someone without any authority over them? Won’t they resent me?”
This is a classic work dilemma.
The other day I was in the kitchen making lunch, when the building shook. I immediately asked my colleagues in the back office if they were OK – as the accompanying loud “thud” I heard sounded like it came from their offices.
They were both OK but looking out the windows.
I joined them in time to see a truck slowly moving forward, away from the lower ledge of our building that it had just backed into – pieces of our building’s white ledge crumbling down on his truck, which now had a huge gash on its top.
Wow. He had just hit our building hard enough to make it shake, rip up his roof, and make plaster crumble down on his truck. Surely he would park and enter the building, to call the landlord — taking responsibility for his accident, right?
In social media, one wrong click of a button can have potentially career-damaging consequences.
Let me share a story that Bill, a colleague of mine, told me. He was very excited to be venturing into LinkedIn for the first time. Sure, he had a profile, but that was it. Now, he wanted to start reading posts, commenting on feeds and increasing his network. Bill was checking his network feed, and reading articles that his associates and clients had posted. One post was about how to cope with really horrible bosses. Without giving his action much thought, Bill “liked” the post.
Harmless, right? After all, that’s how you engage on social media, by liking commentary and following others, right?
Imagine Bill’s shock when a few days later his boss called him into his office.
In my last blog post, I discussed conflict resolution in the workplace. You need to be assertive to succeed at managing conflict.
This skillset is particularly important if you are in conflict with someone who has a very strong or aggressive personality.
Assertiveness is a phenomenal skill to learn. The ability to be assertive — even with your manager or other higher level colleague – will give you the confidence to ask for what you need in all types of situations.
The trait of assertiveness has long been confused with aggressiveness, but they are coming from very different places. Aggressiveness comes from a place of fear, insecurity, and the belief that one must push others around to get what is needed.
Assertiveness, on the other hand, is based on healthy self-esteem and believing not just in your rights, but also those of others.