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communication skills of an effective leader

Communication skills of an effective leader

Effective communication is an essential competence in human relations and in the functioning and achievement of objectives in companies and for leadership success. The communication skills between members of a company is the key to reaching the objectives set. The lack of effective communication in companies generates a poor and inefficient working environment, which causes low productivity and unsatisfactory results. 

Almost all the businessmen and executives whom I have advised as a consultant and coach, complain about bad communication, however, they have little clarity about how to improve it and almost always make the same mistakes they criticize in their employees. 
communication skills of an effective leader

Here are actions effective leadership communication strategies that leaders can take to improve communication within their organizations. 


Create committed relationships: The lack of communication in companies is largely due to a lack of relationship between the members of the organization. When people have no relationship, they avoid approaching others to communicate their observations and, when they do, they are not well received. 

Establish direct communication with responsibility: Communication between individuals in companies is often inauthentic. People tend to retain their communication or communicate everything without much thought about what they are saying (tell others everything they think and feel). Both retained communication and irresponsible communication damage relationships and organization. 

Talk with the purpose of achieving results: Often communication in companies is full of judgments, opinions and criticisms, which is visible in business meetings, where everyone thinks but there are few conclusions, agreements and commitments. Communication that generates results involves specific and measurable requests and promises, that is, for an exact date. 

Be fair in feedback: Leaders and people, in general, tend to talk about what's wrong, correcting others all the time. Talking only about what is wrong is unfair and ineffective because people do much more good than bad and also because talking only about what is wrong generates rejection and damages relationships. A more effective way to communicate with others is to talk first about what is working (recognize them) and then mention what requires correction or modification. 

Create conversations that generate value: A conversation that generates value seeks to find the point of alignment, define and take actions on this place or point, review the result obtained from these actions and adjust the process in search of continuous improvement and learning.    

Effective communication is an essential competence in human relations and in the functioning and achievement of objectives in companies. Following these five guidelines constantly will help us ensure that our communication and that of others generate the type of results we seek.

How to leverage communication skills to be a good leader


Communication skills are essential to be a good leader. If you have a barbaric knowledge, but you are not able to get them to your employees, they will not help you. In the same way that if you do not have the power to efficiently and clearly convey the objectives that are needed to fulfill and carry out a project, it is very difficult for it to be carried out properly.


So, we will explain below how to take advantage and maximize communication skills so that you become a good leader and be able to achieve success in all projects in which you embark with your team.


Make sure they understand you: A good leader who wishes to make the most of his communication skills, always ensures that the information he transmits is well understood by the person to whom he is going. If it has not been well received or misrepresented or even misunderstood, the consequences can be dire, so it is a great responsibility to ensure that the receiver has properly internalized all the concepts. 


Know how to listen and be heard: For a good leader with the ability to maximize his communication skills, knowing how to listen is paramount. In this way, you will always be able to better understand your interlocutor, so the concepts you need to transfer will reach the target audience much better. In addition, this act must be carried out activities to be effective.


In the same way, a leader has to be heard, and this must not be achieved through shouting or the position of responsibility. Instead, he must earn the respect of his subordinates, or be able to communicate effectively so that everything he says is of interest to his interlocutor.

Motivate properly: We have addressed the issue of motivation many times, and we will not get tired of doing so since it is a very important factor in achieving objectives and improving productivity and effectiveness. As for the communication skills of a good leader, as long as he speaks to an audience involved and interested in what he has to say, they will be much more receptive to the messages, which will be positively internalized. 

Set expectations: A good leader with well-developed communication skills is able to establish and generate expectations, a fact that allows him to be much more effective in messages. Obviously, if your audience is interested and needs the information that you are going to transmit, it will accept and internalize the concepts much more effectively.


Know how to listen actively and effectively: Although it seems another obvious feature in communication, many project managers have the defect of only being trained in the way of communicating and rarely consider improving the way of listening. It is essential to learn active listening techniques to make team members feel heard, know how to get the basics of the conversations and be able to change their minds if necessary. 


Ask timely questions in a timely manner: As Aristotle said: "Doubt is the cradle of wisdom". We should never be left with doubts that may give rise to ambiguities or confusion. By mastering the ability to ask, we will achieve better performance optimization by eliminating excess work and, on the other hand, we will save misunderstandings and possible conflicts. 

Ensure that the information is well understood: Once the information has been communicated to the different team members, it is essential to verify that the information has been received correctly. Using the ability to ask and listen, which we have named before, we must ensure that the information has been well understood and that everyone understands their tasks and responsibilities. 

Be assertive as much as possible: Depending on the situation, sometimes we must use different types of communication, for example, aggressive or passive communication, however, a good leader should make assertiveness, the generic form of communication. Being assertive allows us to express our opinion and defend our goal in any area of ​​life without being violent. 

Set and manage expectations: Many times, whether due to functional or technological ignorance, what a customer needs is not exactly what he asks. In this case, the success of the project involves the effective management of the client's expectations by the project manager. Performing a good requirement and a feasibility analysis of the project should be two of the starting points.

Focus communication to a strategic impact: It is essential to think beforehand what we want to communicate and what strategic impact we want to achieve with what we are going to express. Do we want to motivate? get compliance? commitment ?. That is, we must give intentionality to our communication and plan what will be the best way to deliver the message: an email? a call? formal or informal language? 

Negotiation and conflict resolution skills: It is essential to know how to resolve conflicts, both internal and external and, above all, learn to detect and prevent them. On the other hand, negotiation is a skill that is present in our day to day, we spend our lives negotiating, either with our partner, our group of friends, our boss or our suppliers, where we will go on vacation if it is time to have a child, a salary review with our boss or a reduction in the price requested from the provider. These skills are two of the most important in communication and, therefore, it is my intention to write about this kind of skill in future articles of this blog. 

Be specific: Being specific is much better than being ambiguous. Therefore, as we mentioned earlier, it is important that the project leader be clear when communicating to the team the overall plan of a project. It is important that leaders learn to be direct and know what to say at every moment of the conversation, it is also important that they expect the same from collaborators. If the leader does not understand the value of being concise and clear to communicate ideas, it is unlikely that, upon reaching the most important point of the matter, all the people on the team are paying full attention to the conversation. Your goal should be to eliminate the superfluous and only use words that have great relevance. 



Keep an open mind: The rigidity of a closed mind is the most important limiting factor of taking advantage of new opportunities. The number of people who are afraid to express a divergent opinion or argument is impressive. The role of the leader is to promote open dialogues with those who have arguments contrary to those already exposed or those of the leader. Remember that the important thing is not the opinion, but the willingness to discuss the matter with an open mind and learn with the collaborators. 

Be transparent: Smart leaders opt for transparency in the dialogue. They try to conquer the confidence of the team not only through what they say, but with each step they take when deciding the directions of the projects. There is no secret plan or things that are not said. Being transparent conveys the leader's intentions with each team collaborator. Exercising transparency is an excellent step to become a great leader. It is logical, however, that if the information is confidential, it should not be shared with anyone on the team. In addition, you should always try to convey reliability and encourage the team to do the same. 

Be objective: More complicated projects often represent a greater risk for the team in general, especially when there is a clash of interests or individual goals in the team. However, prepared leaders try to overcome these challenges constructively. The idea is to find suitable solutions not to support individual goals, but global strategic goals. 

Be accessible: Team members need to know that they can talk easily and without barriers to the project leader whenever there is a problem, unforeseen or challenge that the team cannot solve. Highly effective project leaders are always available to the team. 

Be consistent and flexible: Changing the entire strategy abruptly is an inconsistency. However, adapting to the needs of the project halfway is not impossible. Good project leaders are reliable and consistent and still manage to be flexible by credibly communicating the new strategy to all those responsible, collaborators and others involved in the project. 

Practice respect: Respecting sexual orientation, culture, age, education level and years of experience, among other characteristics, is essential to be a successful leader. Respect has a direct impact on communication methods and the way the team looks at the leader. A professional who respects his subordinates, valuing the contributions and opinions of each of them, manages to maintain good relations with everyone and a good climate when executing the project tasks.


Expression skills: Successful leaders use different words to convey their message, depending on who they interact with. They support their message with both voice and body language. Here, the unity of content and form is valid, with form often more important - if the form is wrong, the content is misunderstood.
  • Communicate with people, not towards them.
  • Keep eye contact, but don't confuse your partner by constantly blaring. Remember, not only what you say, but also how you say it. Do not use harsh shades; learn to humbly refuse, to reject a variant. 
  • Learn to control the conversation by speaking for less than half the time. Use open-ended questions, determine the attitude of the other party. 
  • Ask one simple question at a time, shut up and listen to the answer.

Conclusion:

Learn from mistakes and always know the next step. The project manager or effective leader with communication skills must be the one with the global vision of the project, it is his commitment to know what situation he is in at any moment, as well as always knowing what the next step will be. This is achieved by communicating and interacting with the rest of the personnel involved in the project and shaping all the information they receive. A project leader should always be able to summarize, recapitulate and respond quickly to the doubts or suggestions of team members at any point in the project. Collecting the lessons learned during the development of a project is a good practice to avoid falling into the same mistakes in the future.
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