Posts Tagged ‘Communication’
If you conducted a survey about yourself, how would your staff, managers, and colleagues rate you as a leader? Do they even view you as a leader?
So you’re innovative, creative, and a go-getter. These are wonderful traits of an Expander Leader, but is your communication style holding back your career or business? If you want to signal to the world you’re a natural leader, you need to be mindful of how you interact with people.
It’s good to focus on practising supportive communication habits, but it’s also important to be aware of the ones that aren’t reflective of the natural Expander Leader that you are. Forbes Leading Lady, Jenna Goudreau, explained that you don’t necessarily get praise for practising effective communication skills, but you’ll certainly lose out for consistent blunders.
“… These [effective communication] skills are required, but that doesn’t mean you rack up bonus points for having them. Instead, you get demerits for your mistakes, as superiors silently cross you off their good lists.”
If you’re not getting the results you want or your career isn’t progressing, think about how you interact with people and what signals you’re sending out.
I’ve written a few articles on how to communicate effectively and present yourself as leadership material, but now it’s time to nip those unhelpful habits in the bud. Your first step in making this happen is to identify what they are. Here is a list of common ones that I have seen hold lots of talented women back:
1. Inappropriate jokes
According to a study of over 4,000 professionals conducted by CTI and Marie Claire, one of the biggest communication mistakes is telling inappropriate jokes. While it’s important to encourage humour and a sense of fun in the workplace, don’t make people feel uncomfortable by not reading your audience properly and telling a joke that is likely to offend.
2. Your body
Your body language has more impact compared to what you say. Poor body language such as avoiding eye contact, a weak handshake, slouching, crossing your arms and legs to make yourself closed off and “small”, and looking down while you speak are all big no-nos. What these actions are saying is “she lacks confidence, she doesn’t believe in what she is saying, she is hiding something, she is bored and uninterested – she is not a leader”.
3. Your emotions
Workplace tears don’t signal leadership material according to the survey conducted by CTI and Marie Claire. Over-the-top displays of any emotion often affects whether people will view you as a leader… or not. It is important to express your emotions, but keep them in check and don’t them get the better of you.
4. Your online persona
Unflattering photos, swearing, bitching, and giving away too much personal information online affects your personal brand. Think about how you want people to perceive you and measure that against what your social media profiles are saying. If you wouldn’t want it on a billboard, don’t put it in a post.
5. Your choice of words
Bite your lip if you feel the words “I think…” or “I can’t… slipping out. Women especially, start sentences with discounting phrases that take away the impact of their idea or key message. Claim your statement confidently and just state it as a fact. Rather than saying, “I believe,” say “The best way forward is to…”. Instead of saying “I can’t…”, say “A better option is to…” or “I can…!”
Now that you’ve identified the top communication mistakes, learn how to replace those with a wealth of supportive habits, actions, and behaviours in our upcoming 100 Day Leading Leadings International Gold Program. It starts on 25 February, places are limited so get in quickly. Apply now.
Bite-sized learning tip of the day: Expressing enthusiasm is a powerful psychological trigger that can influence people in a positive way.
“Be yourself; everyone else is already taken.” Oscar Wilde