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The Importance of Communication- Change you life in 25$

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More changes have taken place in the past 30 years than in the whole history of mankind. This change has included ever-increasing technological advances to enable us to communicate faster, more efficiently and more effectively.

   Technological changes have indisputably led to faster and more efficient communication. We have e-mail, fax machines, telephone conferencing, video conferencing and pagers, but are we communicating more effectively? No.

   We have TV and radio stations that transmit news immediately, newspapers, journals, trade magazines, newsletters, books, direct mail, specialist publications and the World Wide Web. We are getting to the point of information overload, but are we communicating more effectively? No.

   Children today have less opportunity to communicate and learn people skills than ever before. Many rush out to school having eaten breakfast on their own. In the class room they are under pressure to achieve academically. There is less time to play and interact with other pupils than in the past, less participation in sport and even less time for human relationship skills. Back at home, many children eat meal in front of TV, again often on their own, then probably do their homework and spend a few hours in front of the computer.

   In many homes it is rare for family to sit round a table and eat a meal together. Family activities like these can be quality time, and it’s amazing how, during this times, we can resolve worries, problems, upsets and misunderstandings. Yet this rarely happens, to the detriment of many relationships.

  Marriage break-ups, divorce and domestic strife all seem to be on the increase. Of course there are many reasons – pressures of work, pressures of debt and so on – but the family environment used to be the greatest vaccination to the human conflict. In this environment children were guided and unacceptable behavior was corrected. There were role models that not only created security, but by example demonstrated good practice. Also people knew their neighbors and had time to talk. There was always someone to talk to. Relationships were valued. Sadly things have changed. Let’s state the obvious: firstly, you have got you for the rest of your life; and secondly, your happiness will be enhancing by your ability to communicate more effectively.

   Everything that we do through each day involves communication in one form or another- at work and home, in politics, commerce, education, sport, entertainment and the financial world. Communication touches every sphere of our lives. Yet communication is a largely undervalued, untaught asset in the modern world, often with disastrous results. When communication breaks down the bombs and the brickbats start flying about – whether in the home environment, the work place or the global political arena. Professor Stephen Hawking of Cambridge University recently stated – in TV commercial, incidentally – that ‘the world’s problems could be solved if we kept talking’. This idea can be applied to almost any situation.

Whether it is two individuals in a small organization or two radical groups in an international conflict, if they don’t communicate they will never resolve their differences.

COMMUNICATION IN EDUCATION

Education is all about communication – not only of hard facts but also of thoughts and ideas and proposals on which to base discussions and debate. A good teacher who can effectively communicate facts, ideas and theories will turn out well-qualified pupils, but there is one thing lacking in almost every education system in the world, and that is teaching those pupils how to communicate their knowledge to others. Young people are simply not being prepared for what the world needs, or for them to be able to achieve the success and enjoyment that is available.

   There is a common belief among educationalists that knowledge is power. This is totally incorrect. Knowledge is not power: it is potential power. We get paid for what we do with what we know. When we have gained knowledge, what is most important how we use it - how we communicate it, or pass it on to others.

   Consider the following statement: formal education has one purpose only – to get people their first job. Self education earns them their living.

   Initially, the truth of this statement may be difficult to accept. However, although aspects of what we learn at school, college or university enable us to get through our first interview, how much of what we learn in our years of formal education do we actually use later on in life? If we are honest, very little.

THE BUSINESS ENVIRONMENT

One of my clients takes on 1000 university graduates every year. These graduates are intelligent, well-qualified, and keen to find a job in today’s competitive market. Yet within 12 months 60 percent of them have left the company. Why? Some are simply not up to it, or find that the work doesn’t suit them, but the largest single reason for this alarmingly high deep-out rate is the graduates’ in ability to communicate with their peers and their superiors.

You can acquire great knowledge, but unless you can communicate to others, it is worthless.

HR directors and personnel managers have said that they have problems finding people who can communicate effectively. This, I suggest, goes back to the education system, where teachers are simply not teaching their students how to communicate, and therefore not preparing for the business world. One possible solution would be to make every teacher to do their actual work environment experience – for, say, three weeks a year.

   In many cases, problems due to lack of communication in the work place can start on day one. Here is a typical example:

   A arrives for his first day in a new job. B is delegated to show him the ropes.

   What does B do? He has worked here for some time: he knows it all backwards. So he paints only a broad picture, leaving out mirror details which is second nature to him but not at all obvious to A.

   How does A react? He has an awful lot to digest in his first few days. He is nervous and perhaps a little shy, which does not help his concentration.

   What happens next? A begins to realize that he needs more information in order to do the job properly. B, in the meantime, considers he has done his bit, and goes back to his own workload. A is too nervous or embarrassed to ask questions that might be considered stupid.

   The result? A is already struggling: he is unable to perform to his best ability. His self-confidence is crumbling. B begins to think A is not up to the job

The lesson?

·         Communicate from the word go.

·         Explain things clearly and detail.

·         Don’t think that because something is obvious to you it must be obvious to someone else.

·         If you are the one being trained, don’t be afraid to say things like ‘I get the overall picture, but would you please go through such-and-such a point again?’

·         Ask questions.

·         Talk.

For management the cost of failed communication can be absolutely staggering, involving:

·         Loss of time;

·         Loss of respect;

·         Loss of business;

·         Loss of money;

·         Loss of confidence;

·         Loss of credibility;

·         Loss of relationships;

·         Loss of staff;

·         Loss of trust;

·         Loss of clients.

But when communication is good, the benefits are immediately apparent,

People:

·         Feel good;

·         Do their job well;

·         Work well together;

·         Feel motivated;

·         Understand;

·         Save time;

·         Feel empowered;

·         Assume responsibility;

·         Share information;

·         Respect, trust and like each other;

·         Listen. 

Poor communication will inevitably lead to a negative outcome. Effective communication will undoubtedly lead to a positive one.

In the modern world there is a more urgent need than ever for people at top to be able to communicate with others. This applies to those holding positions of achievement or power in politics, business, sport, entertainment or any other sphere of life.

   It would be impossible for anyone in any public company or position to hold his or her job without mastering the skills of how to communicate with employees, handle the media, or speak in public. However, there must be a balance – it is important to have knowledge but you must also have the ability to communicate that knowledge effectively.

   Throughout this book we will be looking at a range of scenarios, situations and styles to enable people to communicate more effectively. If you are going to win with communication you have to be prepared and able to face every situation. In the long run, the more open you are, the more you prepared to talk and ask questions, the more you prepared to build relationships, the more you will find that good interpersonal communication will be great winner for you.

POCKET REMINDERS

·         Create quality talk time for family and friends.

·         Learn to communicate your knowledge to others

·         Talk about misunderstandings: be constructive

·         Don’t be afraid to ask questions

·         Keep talking.

‘WISE WORDS’

Nobody can go back to start a new beginning, but anyone can start today to make a new ending.

 

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