Wednesday April 26, 2017
We live in the age of non-stop communication. For example, the 24 hour news cycle, mobile phones and tablets, smart watches, email or text, and the 24 hour social media such as LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook. Regardless of what your schedule may be, you can send a message or a photo and express yourself at any length, at any time to anyone. These various types of communication can enhance your ability for success.
But what is really being said with all this opportunity to communicate so freely?
Have you ever noticed how, in general, people can have a tendency to repeat themselves over and over and over again? The message is not concise. The message is not direct. Sometimes, the message isn’t delivered at all. Often simply ignored.
That’s why brevity can go a long way towards success – and getting your message across – especially in business.
You attend a speech given by a well-known individual. World renowned. You’ve been anticipating the event. You have a front row seat. As the guest speaker begins you’re surprised by how boring the presentation is. Not only is the speech uninteresting but the presenter is babbling on about nothing that makes any sense whatsoever or relates to the topic that was advertised. The speech doesn’t match with the audience in attendance. You may be saying to yourself: What am I doing here?!
Now picture this:
You’re communicating during the business day with co-workers, customers and vendors. What are you really saying? Are you just talking for the sake of talking? Do you ever feel like you are babbling on and on and on; not certain of what others may be thinking? Are you concise with your message? Are you even delivering the intended message? Are you getting the business results you want?
There is so much energy being placed today on meaningless conversation. In other words, people talking just for the sake of talking. To get attention. Yet nobody is really listening.
Success in business is about effective communication.
There is so much as a business person you need to effectively communicate each day. The very last thing you need people to think when you’re talking is that the words are boring – whether it’s one sentence or a professional presentation. There’s plenty in today’s business world to cause distraction. But you do not want anyone to be distracted from the message you are wanting to get across. It could be disastrous to your business objectives and goals. Don’t allow yourself to be “tuned out”!
When talking with an individual or a group of business people consider observing their body language. Are they listening? Do they seem preoccupied with something else? Are they checking their smartphones? Walking out of the room to take a call or call someone? Are their eyes glazing over? Are they yawning? Seeming anxious in any way? Can you pull them into the conversation with questions? You may not have their full attention. They may not be fully engaged in what you are saying. Your message isn’t getting through to the intended audience.
Remember: Attention spans are not as lengthy as they may have previously been due to the complexities of modern daily living. That’s why brevity, or conciseness, can go a very long way towards success for you each business day.
When talking to business associates or customers, try to be consciously aware enough to directly hear yourself. Hear what you are saying. When possible, record your words so you can listen back to them. Especially when preparing for a major sales presentation or will be a speaker at a meeting. Note: When recording, always make others aware for legal reasons.
- What words are unnecessary?
- Is there specific substance and meaning to the intended conversation or presentation?
- What would you want to listen to if you were listening to yourself talk?
- Do you directly focus on your audience – whether it’s one person or hundreds?
- Do you guide others along in what you have to say?
- Do you ask questions to insure people are understanding and interested?
- Do you edit your words so people will grasp the message clearly?
For the sake of brevity, I conclude this by saying: To your success!