Communication. It all boils down to communication. Everything that is working and isn't within your team, family and every other relationships comes down to it.
It's funny—it's one of the earliest skills we learn as humans yet it seems to be the most difficult to master.
Luckily, there are some practical ways to start to improve this, as soon as today, to help take your leadership to the next level and get results!
There are 5 characteristics you find in every confident communicator. When I say confident, I'm not talking about your mastery of your native language, comfort in front of a room or use grammar. I'm talking about your ability to communicate in a way that gets you the results your looking for.
2 Care & Candor
Characteristic #1: Curiosity
Curiosity is one of those "special/secret ingredients" to being a "people person." But we're not just talking about peppering someone with never-ending questions throughout an entire conversation. The secret here is what the curiosity takes the place of....judgment.
Here are some ways replacing judgment with curiosity will improve your communication:
1 Curiosity helps you understand where your people are rather than making assumptions.
2 Curiosity helps the other person know you're interested in them.
3 Finally, curiosity helps the other person become a more critical thinker—it shows them how to think rather than what to think.
It really is true that whenever you want to communicate well, curiosity is better than judgment.
Characteristic #2: Care & Candor
Next in line to help you learn to be a more confident communicator is learning how to balance care & candor.
👉🏽 Care: If you're CARING well you will know, appreciate and honor what the other person is excited about and stressed about.
👉🏽 Candor: You’re using CANDOR well if you’re having honest conversations about what’s working, what’s challenging and what you would like to change.
Which of these are you better at? For most of us, one of these comes more naturally than the other. Not only are you better at one but the other can seem almost undoable. Either extreme one way or the other will be ineffective. For example, if you are great at care, candor can seem way too harsh. If you're super candid, care is going to feel like an unnecessary waste of time.
👉🏽 Care without candor can cause a person to be too passive and come up short on results.
👉🏽 Candor without care can be too harsh and cause a person to come up short on connection and collaboration.
Characteristic #3: Consistency
The third characteristic of confident communicators is consistency. This trait is so important because it is difficult for people to follow you if you're inconsistent.
People won't be able to trust what you say and they will constantly be waiting for you to change your mind again.
They might even label you as a flip-flopper.
If you're someone who changes the strategy too frequently or you fail to follow through with plans, the people you lead will eventually stop taking you seriously. They'll think what you say doesn't really matter because you're likely just going to change it again. When you make a decision about something, stick with it. Manage your yeses and your nos.
Characteristic #4: Clarity
Next, it's time to look at clarity.
Once you have your consistency down, it's time to look at clarity. In short, clarity is a commitment to clear communication of expectations.
As far as clarity is concerned, people need to know what is right, what is wrong and what is expected. It's important you clarify both responsibility and authority.
More times than not, a lack of clarity will cause failed or unmet expectations which will inevitably cause frustration on all sides while also leading to disappointment and ultimately resentment.
Characteristic #5: Courage
The final characteristic can often be the most difficult to grasp. Let's look at courage.
Courage is a unique C in this conversation because to truly apply the other Cs, you need a good dose of courage.
Courage is being willing to fight through difficult conversations in order to establish connection and rapport.
It takes courage to identify your own negative communication patterns (link blog) in order to make sure you can communicate effectively while also recognizing when you might be wrong.
Communication is a skill we can all improve. If you take the time to develop these five characteristics, you will certainly take your team to the next level. And if you need help getting started, let me know!
Interested in making sure you continue to grow? We are too! Schedule time with Bob to start your journey today!