Look through any job description and you’ll most likely find “excellent communication skills” listed as a requirement.
Inside and outside of work life, communication helps us build and maintain relationships, and accomplish goals. In business, communication skills help companies achieve their aims and objectives. Employees with excellent communication skills are able to explain things, convey messages, ask relevant questions, and avoid or resolve conflicts effectively.
Let's take a closer look at some of the things people with excellent communication skills do consistently.
1. They listen
40 percent of communication is about listening. Good communicators focus on understanding the other person’s message. They also watch for verbal and non-verbal clues to interpret messages accurately. Excellent communicators avoid interrupting, talking over, or finishing the other person’s sentences for them.
2. They know their audience
An important part of effective communication skills is knowing the audience. Excellent communicators can get people to understand complex concepts, whether they're a colleague or a 12-year old. They are able to adjust their language and style according to the person or people they're talking to.
3. They get to the point
Being clear and concise doesn’t mean explaining something with a maximum of five words. Good communicators are able to provide adequate relevant context and quickly get to the point. When giving instructions, they provide clear directions that enable effective action.
4. They know the right media to use
Technology has created so many new ways for us to communicate. However, not all types of media are suitable for all communication. Someone with great communication skills will know when to follow up a verbal briefing with an email and when it's okay to use a text message instead.
5. They display confidence
Whether talking to a colleague, contributing to a group discussion, or presenting at a conference, confidence is essential. Confident communicators display good non-verbal language - like maintaining eye-contact and speaking clearly at a suitable volume.