Communicating with Impact


These tips will help you be an effective communicator:

u       Link your ideas to the interests of the other person

u       Be sensitive to how the other person prefers to receive information

-        Bottom line first

-        Build a case and then give the result

-        Details

-        Overview only

u       Be sure you understand the other persons point of view

-        Ask questions

-        Consider history

u       Recognize their position even if you disagree and treat their position as valid

u       Be sure you know what you want out of the encounter

-        Action from the other person

-        Information from the other person

-        No action but you want them to understand information

u       Use multiple communication methods

-        In some cases an e-mail before meeting with the person will be helpful to allow the other person to think about the situation

-        In some cases a follow up is needed

-        Phone calls can be used for some discussions but in other cases in-person discussions are best

u       Be flexible and prepared to change your approach if you get new information or face resistance

u       Consider the environment for the discussion – the hallway may not be appropriate even if you happen to see the other party

u       Avoid devaluing your message by using qualifiers such as “this may be off base but…” or, “I’m sure you have more information but…”

u       Use examples to highlight points and make it relevant for the other person

u       Use non-inflammatory language

-        Avoid saying “you always…” and instead say “when…happens”

u       Consider using back channels to pre-sell ideas or gather additional information