Communication plays a major role in separating the outstanding managers from the mediocre managers. Most managers are aware of the need for both verbal and written communication in the workplace. But there are many other forms of communication. Have you ever noticed that sometimes when you read an e-mail it has a “tone” that makes you can feel offended, hurt, and/or insulted? Or have you ever spoke with someone on the phone and felt that they were being rude? These examples show that there is much more involved in communication that speaking and writing words. The best way to ensure that your point is being understood is to have a face to face conversation and to be attentive to how the receiver is reacting to what they are hearing. Body language is a big part of communication and helps us convey our message when communicating.
I just read an article titled, Advanced Communication Skills by Sean McPheat, where he explains that humans actually use all five of their senses which include: sight, sound, smell, touch and taste when communicating. An example, of sight communication would be a red office door. Although the manager has told their staff that they have an open door policy, the red door could send a silent contradictory message. This is because red is usually associated with stop and could cause employees to not visit the manager if they do not have an appointment. Managers need to be aware of all the different forms of communication and make sure that they are not sending unintentional signals. Also leaders should use as many different forms of communication as possible to ensure understanding. For example, if a manager has just advised their staff of a new process and then notices that one of their staff members is slightly frowning, this could be a sign that they do not understand or that they do not agree. Manager need to be able to recognize and interpret these warning signals and give further explanation for the change.