How Well Do You Communicate? by Judi Moreo

<Guest Post by Judi Moreo>

Administrative Professionals are the key to good communication in an organization.  It is imperative that we are able to communicate clearly and precisely in order to avoid misinterpretation and misunderstandings that can be extremely costly to the organization.  When communication is not good, it can cause serious damage to our organization, our executive, and even ourselves.

Communication is an interactive process between two or more individuals whereby one person delivers information and the other person or persons understand.  So, there is the operative word… understand. If there is no understanding, then there is no communication.  Therefore, it is imperative we check for understanding during any communication.  Too many of us assume that the other person received the information we intended to deliver.

It is also extremely important to check the validity of any information before delivering it, especially when dealing with complicated issues. We don’t ever want to be known as a person who does not check the facts and delivers inaccurate information.

The second aspect to good communication is listening.  If you don’t listen, you will not understand.  We often don’t listen properly because our thoughts are elsewhere and most of us will not admit that we didn’t hear what was said because we were focused on our own self-talk.  You will earn yourself a great deal of respect if you learn and practice active listening skills.  Sometimes, we don’t hear because we have been observing the other person and our imagination got carried away with itself about what we thought was going on with that person based on the body language we observed.

We, too, need to be aware of our body language or as it is often called, “our non-verbal communication.”  We must be careful of our facial expression, body stance, and gestures because “actions speak louder than words.”  We can use the right words, but if we aren’t displaying the appropriate body language, the other person could possibly understand the message totally different than we meant it.  If there is a discrepancy between what was said and the way we looked when we said it, the listener will believe the non-verbals over the verbal.

The difference between a good communicator and a poor communicator is the degree of understanding that has taken place.  Make sure you are understood!

Ask yourself, how well do you communicate? What steps will you take to improve your communication process this week? 

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Judi Moreo is one of America’s foremost personal development experts and the author of “You Are More Than Enough:  Every Woman’s Guide to Purpose, Passion, and Power” and its companion, the Achievement Journal.

You can learn more about Judi at www.JudiMoreo.com.

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18 thoughts on “How Well Do You Communicate? by Judi Moreo”

  1. I’ve found most times they’re not listening to what they are saying so I’ve learned to ask questions when they’re done speaking. It clears up a lot of misunderstandings and it gets them thinking about what they’ve said.

  2. I believe good communication skills are at the top of the list of qualities admins should have, but people do need to be aware of and respect the different “styles” of communication. I’m someone who gestures with my hands when I speak. My last boss found that so distracting he couldn’t concentrate on anything I was saying. He also failed to see that his response to my gesturing (eye rolling and sighing impatiently) was equally distracting to me. I ended up leaving the company thinking I was a terrible communicator. Where I work now, they compliment me on my openness and ability to communicate with everyone (coworkers and executives).

  3. I often wondered why my boss would give a directive that I thought I understood but when I would bring him the results they at times didn’t match up. Then we did a simple exercise with Legos in our staff meeting. You do this with two people and both individuals are given 5 identical Legos. One person designs something with the pieces of Legos where the 2nd person can’t see what they built. Then that first person has to use only words (without saying colors) to help the other person build exactly what they build, and they can’t see what that 2nd person is building. It was quite hysterical to see some of the results! It was also quite an eye opener to understand who some of these miss-communications might happen!

  4. Because I sometimes have issues hearing (people who speak softly, large open spaces); I’ve trained myself to really focus in on someone and what they are saying. My former boss wanted to know the ‘end’ first and then for you to fill in the details. I’m still learning with my new boss as we work out our processes and both of us adjusting to our new roles.

  5. Excellent point. There are times we think we are listening intently, but we are not hearing what is actually being discussed.

  6. I want to point out “listening” I find it more and more around me, people keep interrupting each other. I would be lying if I said I never cut off anyone, but I do my best to keep my lips zipped and my ears open. It keeps us from jumping to conclusions, etc. I find as I listen on meetings, there are individuals that keep cutting each other off. It is frustrating and I most certainly believe it is annoying. I remind myself everyday about it. If they are doing this to each other, can you imagine what they are doing to the clients????

    1. Good point, Kim. We all do it – our brain is automatically trying to respond, put pieces together, finish the sentence, hurry the person up, etc. We have to actively choose to be a good listener and it takes constant reminders. Thanks for bringing this one up.

  7. Mode of communication is also important. Your communication style may need to be modified if by email rather than in person. And, some types of communicaiton should not be delivered by email, if at all possible.

  8. great article! i couldn’t agree more. i find this to be a daily challenge of mine. i think it is imperative that i communicate effectively with everyone in my organization, no matter what their role is, whether it’s in person or in written form.

  9. Great suggestions – it makes you stop and think! Am I really listening and hearing what they are saying? Another form of communication I find overused is E-MAIL. When I am working with someone that is difficult, I try to make a point to pick up the phone and call that person and avoid misinterpretation of anything that may be communicated in writing. I also think in person or verbal communication helps build the relationship versus e-mail (over) usage.

  10. Communication and listening are SO important. We learn how to communicate as we grow – our style and delivery; we occasionally have to relearn as adults! How we communicate with our friends is different than how we communicate with our family or business associates. And don’t get me started on acronyms! Thank you, Judi Moreo!

  11. This is awesome! When I communicate in my personal life, it is so different! My family, mostly girls, can go from one conversation to another, sometimes in the middle of the conversation, (we are Italian!) 🙂 and it’s hard to switch that!! I am learning!!!

  12. Communication and listening are SO important! We learn how to communicate as we grow – our style and delivery; we occasionally have to relearn as adults! How we communicate with our friends is different than how we communicate with our family or business associates. And don’t get me started on acronyms! Thank you, Judi Moreo!

  13. To improve my communication daily and weekly, I became a member of Toastmasters which allows you to step out of your comfort zone. Here we learn excellent listening skills, a new word of the day and on-the-stop speaking.

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