Why do some work relationships grow quicker than others? Why do some people have bigger professional networks than you? It’s probably mostly down to communication skills!
Good communication is the glue that holds relationships together with new, old and new contacts! Leave your bad posture at home, learn how to answer the phone and reply to THAT email with these great tips on online, verbal and non-verbal communication!
Smile and be happy! You mightn’t think it, but you can actually hear a smile at the other end of the line! An enthusiastic and polite tone makes people relaxed during a conversation, which will make them more open.
Make sure to greet the person you are speaking to and ask how they are. If you are calling an organisation, always ask the name of the person you are talking to in case you need to get in touch again. You will always get a warmer response from someone you’ve spoke to before… unless you’ve messed up the first call, of course!
Whenever you are on the telephone, always speak clearly and be genuine. Do not try and overcomplicate the conversation or drag out the call. Get to the point! Be clear on what you are calling about and what could come out of the conversation.
Emails are probably the most common form of communication at the moment… apart from whatsapp groups obvz! An email can be used in work, to contact mates, check info and apply for jobs or internships. One of the best things about email is that it’s really easy to keep a record of your communication!
The way you communicate via email will always be different, depending who you are talking to so it’s important that you know your audience! You don’t want to come across cold by being too professional to one person but also don’t want to see like you don’t care or are unprofessional by coming across to relaxed!
If you are emailing companies or professionals, starting off on a personal note such as “I hope you are keeping well?” is a good way to greet. If you want bonus points, try relate it to pop in a congratulations on a recent development with the company… but don’t congratulate them on their set of curtains… that’s just creepy!
It is important to be clear and concise in the body of your email, it doesn’t have to be really long, keep it short and sweet and to the point. Make sure it’s structured. No one likes wading through a big block of text!
Don’t use text talk! Avoid abbreviations and acronyms and emojis. Save it for Snapchat! Because professionals don’t want to know if you are feeling like a monkey covering his eyes or a poo with eyes tbf!
Always proof-read your emails before sending! Spelling 0r grammar mistakes could ruin how someone sees you and cost you that job! Attention to detail is always important!
Face to Face Communication
First impressions always matter… especially when you are communicating with someone face to face! Communication starts from your initial greeting with the other person. The formalities that you don’t normally think of such as handshakes, introducing yourself and eye contact are so important!
Don’t speak too fast but don’t speak super slow either! Perfect your pace. You want to show the other person you are calm and confident and really know what you are talking about.
Taking notes while communicating face to face can help you to recap on the conversation afterwards as well as write down any questions they asked which you did not have the answer to at the time.
Face to face communication also gives you the advantage of making use of handouts and presentations to get your point across.
Don’t forget to follow up! A quick email thanks the person for their time and briefly running through what you discussed is a great way to build your relationship and make sure you are top of their mind!
Your body language is also a massive part of face-to-face meetings! Gestures such as a warm facial expression or nodding your head when agreeing are ways to communicate non-verbally. The way you sit, walk or stand all convey your personality and how you present yourself! Good posture is also really important. Do not approach conversations with shrugged shoulders or blank faces, avoid losing relationships over bad body language. And don’t forget… Smile!