Communication Is the Response You Get

Our definition of Communication is ‘the response you get.’

Think about it, how often have you said to yourself:

“Why didn’t they do it the way I told them?”
“Why do I have to tell them again?”
“Why didn’t they get their activities done that I told them in the meeting?”

Any of these types of questions that you ask yourself should be turned around to the question, “How did I communicate to them?”

Mastering effective communication is a lesson that needs to be recognized by business leader.

In business consulting, we take a methodical approach to ensure every person on your team knows how to effectively communicate with each other.

Your business coach will teach you how to add powerful personality profiling assessments like the DiSC, to master effective communication and maximize team productivity.

The DISC model provides a common language that people can use to better understand themselves and to adapt their behaviors with others.  You can learn more HERE

The general basis for effective communications derives from asking questions, listening and then responding.

Three questions

There are three types of communication questions:

Open-ended questions– These are questions that cannot be answered simply by “yes” or “no”. They encourage the other party or parties to open up and provide information from their perspective that will allow you to more fully understand their position.

Reflective questions– These allow the other party or parties to elaborate on a statement after you repeat a particular word or phrase that the other party used.

Directive questions– These guide the other party toward a desired, specific piece of information to allow you to quickly move to the response you want. Avoid using directive questions in a manipulative manner as this can backfire by creating mistrust and turning people against the desired communication.

In considering these three types of questions, always consciously see how many  questions can be converted to open-ended questions by using Rudyard Kipling’s “six honest serving men”: What, Why, When, Where, Who, How.

Proactive listening

Contrary to common belief, listening is not passive; it is active. As a leading Broadway stage director once said, “Acting is reacting. It’s done with the ears, not the mouth.” How do you get someone’s attention to allow for productive communications from you?

It’s not by talking at them, by making clever remarks or by impressing others about yourself. If you want to open up the opportunity for effective communications with and from you, ask questions about what’s important to them.

The biggest mistake in communications is talking about “me”, “myself”, and “I”. “I want you to do this”, “What I want to sell is…”, “These are my needs…”

Consciously turn your attention to the other person. “How can I help you?”, “What are your needs?”. Then listen. By showing interest in the other person you can make more friends in 20 minutes than you can in 20 weeks by showing how interesting you think you are.

Effective responses

The third element of effective communications is framed by how you respond.

As Mother Teresa once said, “Kind words can be short and easy to speak, but their echoes are truly endless.”

The five most important words a business owner or leader can say are: “I am proud of you.”

The four most important words are: “What is your opinion?”

The three most important words are: “If you please.”

The two most important words are: “Thank you.”

And the most important single word is: “You.”

In today’s business environment, it is critical that business leaders use positive and uplifting communication to generate the responses they intend from their communication by asking questions, by proactive listening and by using effective responses.