Communication is a vital process within any workplace or social environment. From conversations between co-workers to discussions among business partners and customer engagement activities – communication serves as the adhesive that keeps people together.
On the contrary, a lack of communication can quickly compromise a project or collaboration and lead to long-term misunderstandings. As author Horace Jackson Brown Jr. said, “don’t burn bridges. You’ll be surprised how many times you have to cross the same river.
While grievances and misunderstandings may abound among individuals due to conflicting perspectives, quality communication skills will help you agree amicably without straining personal and professional relationships. That’s where a communication workshop can be handy in providing the guidance and support to make the most of every interaction.
Types of Workplace Communication That Communication Skills Training Can Help
Communication skills in an organisational context depend on the environment and medium that it takes place in. We’ve all had the experience of getting into a long, boring meeting thinking, “This could have been an email.” An effective communicator would be able to develop the skills and ability that doesn’t just allow them to convey information purposefully, but also know the right timing, and method of delivery to do so effectively.
When it comes to leadership, the goal of management is to build a relationship between employee and the organisation—ensuring an alignment of values. This can be done through communication to influence, inspire, persuade commitment, or to inform about changes in company policy.
Formal Internal Communication:
These refer to organisational communication delivery such as updates, meetings, presentations, and upwards communication between managers, leaders and teams. These are a critical part of any organisation and team communication efforts as they are meant to engage, build synergy, quickly communicate information, and influence professionals and management for better business action.
Modern business communication has evolved to focus on customer-centricity. As a customer yourself, you would be able to understand the importance that effective company communication has on your experience with any brand. The effectiveness of customer communication falls upon how well you plan your message to cater your customers’ needs and preferences.
The primary goal of this type of communication is to connect, engage and build relationships with colleagues—while moving the work of the organisation forward. These can be in the form of emails and chats that happen through the course of the work day.
A lack of understanding on the objectives and strategies of communication increases the risk of misunderstandings and conflicts occurring. This doesn’t just affect the relationship between employees, it also results in lost opportunities and lower organisational performance. Through communication skills training and communication skills workshops, professionals and management will be better equipped to handle business communication with success.
What Are Communication Skills?
Communication skills are an umbrella term, essentially helping you say the right things, to the right person, at the right time – and in the right way. Essentially, effective communicators have a good grasp of human emotions, and they have the skills to approach a delicate situation most tactfully.
For business leaders, it means conveying messages, visions, and directions transparently without misunderstanding while fostering teamwork among the workforce. For workers, it relates to understanding varying working styles among colleagues and accommodating them as much as possible.
While communications skills are essentially as complex and diverse as human emotions, there are some that you should focus on at work. Healthy communication serves as the foundation of positive work culture, which provides a slew of benefits that include revenue gains and employee retention. It is a skill that can make a world of difference in the quality of the relationships between various stakeholders in an organisation.
Active Listening Skills
It is important to remember that conversation isn’t just about talking—it is equally important for us to learn to listen. Listening should be at the top of any communication skills list for your organisation. While the art of listening seems passive and instinctual, mastery over it takes conscious practice.
Specifically, there is a need to concentrate on active listening skills, where individuals pick up the most important details (i.e., nonverbal cues) from a speaker and provide the most appropriate response. For example, silence may be the best reaction until the speaker finishes the entire sharing instead of interrupting with a suggestion.
Essentially, active listening allows you to identify a person’s perspective and to form solutions that cater to various needs and concerns. Additionally, you have the opportunity to acquire fresh insights and ideas that would be inaccessible if you took a one-dimensional approach to the conversation.
Retired FBI hostage negotiator, Gary Noesner, spent a 30-year career honing the art of active listening. The masterful negotiator identified active listening as one of the most significant learning points from the counselling community.
Noesner shared, “I think that was the big change in negotiations; we realized that [there were] a handful of skills that were extremely effective in allowing us to come across as non-threatening, non-judgmental.”
The same rules apply in a boardroom (arguably at a less intensive scale), at the pantry, or across a remote meeting; active listening puts people at ease and encourages productive interactions.
Clarity in Communication
Clarity in communication helps you convey significant points and directions necessary for managing a business or organisation with minimal disruptions. Essentially, the more details in a conversation or written discourse, the higher the chance of an error or misinterpretation.
Therefore, being concise is one of the critical components for achieving workplace clarity.
Additionally, lengthy or convoluted communication might cause disengagement among listeners, resulting in higher risks of mistakes and compromised productivity. However, you should exercise caution when being concise, as a lack of information proves equally counterproductive at the workplace.
One effective method for improving clarity is identifying the main goals and context in a specific situation. By doing so, you can jump straight to making a solid point and leave a lasting positive impression without distractions or digression. For example, when setting a deadline, clarify the facts (i.e., date) and consequences of not meeting a target to ensure everybody is on the same page.
Empathy is one of the most crucial elements in a workplace. The trait refers to the ability to put yourself in another person’s shoes, identifying with their concerns, doubts, and interests.
Empathetic co-workers and leaders can work effectively to create a positive workplace that thrives on mutual understanding. Rather than fault-finding and playing the blame game, empathy allows individuals to put differences aside and strive toward a common organisational goal. Open and understanding work relationships can help set the stage for improved creativity.
According to the Management Research Group (MRG), empathy is the strongest predictor of ethical leadership. An ethical leader achieves harmony and great strides within a company, such as gaining support from communities and top talents and improving customer relations.
Open, consistent, and constructive feedback provides your team with the diverse experience to learn and improve overall performance. You should promote transparency and encouragement in feedback, which gradually builds confidence in an individual.
Your team will be more willing to embrace continuous learning and skills development through quality feedback, staying motivated to contribute to their fullest.
Additionally, employees will feel more valued and engaged since you went the extra mile to help them improve in their respective roles. According to a Gallup study, “those who received strengths feedback had turnover rates that were 14.9% lower than for employees who received no feedback.”
4 Reasons to Consider Communication Skills Training
The dynamic nature of workplaces require organisations to prioritise effective communication not just for self-development, but for productive employee performance as well, especially when most companies are making use of online media to communicate. According to Gallup, only 17% of employees strongly agree that their company has open communication. Communication skills training and communication skills workshops can provide a wide range of benefits in professional and personal engagements. We can see this manifest across various practical settings.
Communication Training Establishes Trust
Improved communication enables you to earn trust from others, resulting in solid and lasting relationships. For example, as a team leader, you can convince members that you will meet set expectations, inspiring cohesive collaborations. Additionally, others will have peace of mind knowing that you have their back during times of crisis.
Communication Training Can Help with Improved Workplace Satisfaction
As an effective communicator, you will have the tools and methods to keep co-workers happy and motivated to perform with excellence. You can effectively “read the room” and detect and resolve a communication problem before it spirals out of control. Essentially, you will have the confidence and understanding to keep people together regardless of inherent differences.
Communication Training Mitigates Conflict and Manages Polarity in Relationships
In the rare event of a conflict, you will have the expertise to assess the situation and provide the best outcome for all involved parties in a team. Quick conflict resolution keeps departments and organisations running with minimal “downtime.” Additionally, as a workplace mediator, you can help others work better with their colleagues by encouraging empathy and understanding among groups.
Communication Training Contributes to Better Innovation, Productivity, and Performance
When we communicate with clarity, we see growth in many areas that can improve performance. Communicating effectively can reduce the amount of time wasted. As employees are clear about what they need to do, and have the confidence to communicate their ideas freely, organisations enjoy better innovation and performance.
Communication Training Boosts Team Building and Collaboration
By attending a skills workshop or communication course, you can acquire the skills required to inspire teams from the start. Efficient team-building creates a solid foundation that keeps members committed and focused on achieving significant milestones through combined effort. The process eliminates the risks of silos, conflict, and other disruptive issues.
What Is A Communication Workshop And What Can It Do For You?
Communication workshops are a type of communication skills training. These are instructor-led programs—done online or face-to-face—that help participants develop, and improve the way they communicate and listen. Through communication workshops, participants can overcome the difficulty they face in communicating effectively, and develop skills and benefits in other areas as well.
Communication Workshops Can Improve Teamwork Culture
While the main purpose of a communication workshop is for skill development, it can also help a person with self-development and awareness. Activities conducted can help teams in understanding the behaviour of one another and learn how they can leverage on each other’s potential to maximise relationships.
Communication Workshops Help With Practical Knowledge and Strategies
The art of communicating can be complex, especially when we struggle to understand the nuances behind them. A communication workshop guides participants and facilitates hands-on learning through interactive activities. They are also given a safe space to explore these new techniques and concepts, making it easier for them to carry it on beyond the training environment.
Communication Workshops Allow For Collective Learning
There is a limit to what you can teach yourself, but there is no limit to what others can teach you. By engaging in group learning through a communication workshop, it allows for people to come together and consolidate their knowledge and experiences. In turn, they benefit from sharing information and tips that may help them in communication training.
Types of Communication Skills Training and Workshops
Communication skills training workshops and courses help optimise your interactions with employees, partners, and other major business stakeholders. Essentially, by working with a communication expert or consultant, you can increase awareness of existing strengths and weaknesses and discover practical methods that you can implement in real-world settings.
Networking seminars are essential for expanding and managing long-term professional relationships. A networking seminar equips participants with the necessary skills to make a powerful first impression on prospects.
These programs help professionals develop the confidence to avoid awkward business meetups to deliver the most effective pitches and collaborative proposals. For example, instructors may share standard networking etiquettes and a systematic approach to maintaining the flow of a conversation.
An effective interview can significantly increase the chances of finding the right job fit. Business leaders should have a structured style of asking the most powerful questions to identify the best people for your organisation, reducing turnover, and maximising employee engagement.
Interview seminars and workshops can help you compile the vital aspects of the hiring process – reflecting on deeper considerations beyond academic qualifications and employment history. Context-driven topics covered may include pre-interview preparations (i.e., setting a comfortable atmosphere for the candidate to encourage interaction) and workplace culture considerations.
Presentations and Public Speaking
Presentations and public speaking are important interpersonal skills to hold, especially for professionals who seek to influence and engage their teams and management.
Communication skills workshops tailored to developing these skills can help participants be more confident as presentors, speaking with clear articulation, pace, and in an engaging manner. It is also helpful in orientation them to be flexible and adaptive in the way that they speak, and craft their own unique speaking style.
Managing Business and Interpersonal Relationships
Being able to work with others smoothly is a soft skill that is highly valued by many employers. Workshops that focus on relationship building are designed to help participants develop the ability to foster meaningful and deep relationships within their networks, teams and customers.
Kickstart Your Communication Skills Training with The SoundWave’s Own Your Conversation Workshop
Effective communication skills is one of the biggest requirements by organisations. It is how we connect, engage, influence and get things done.
SoundWave’s Own Your Conversation workshop is a great starting point for many professionals and organisations in their communication skills training. It makes use of the signature Brilliance 3 Communication Styles assessment to empower participants and help them discover how they can speak with more intentiality and awareness, to increase their positive impact in their personal and professional lives.
Soundwave is a specialized communication solution that helps you identify and manage various voices towards creating the most significant impact across organisational issues, ranging from managing disagreements to team-building. While having a conversation is a natural process, Soundwave empowers and refines your unique speaking style, improving relationships through engaging conversations.
Where communication skills workshops usually focus on external factors, our approach emphasizes your ability and control in your communication skills, and how you can turn it to your advantage. As we like to say, the brilliance is within you, and the brilliance starts with you! With SoundWave, you can recognise the core components that drive your communication, such as the strengths, risks, and accentuations in your dialogues. Communication experts will then guide you through the steps to improve your speaking style for improved clarity, engagement, and impact in the workplace and beyond. Ultimately, SoundWave provides you with the building blocks in communication that drive improved outcomes across all scenarios. Our methodology and approach can be applied in any area of concern.
Reach out to us today to find out more about our ‘Own Your Conversation’ workshop and other communication skills training solution.
Maalikka is the latest addition to SoundWave's team of marketing and content extraordinaries. As an avid reader, writer and learner, she’s always on the lookout for new information online or interesting conversations to inspire her. Her other passions include gaming, Netflix, and cats.