Being able to speak to, listen to, and empathize with others is important in any workplace setting. From communicating with patients, working with those across departments, or simply chatting with those in your own department, there are many things to be mindful of to ensure you are being a well-rounded communicator. Check out these tips we’ve gathered to help make you more versatile in the workplace when it comes to sharing information and getting to know others.
Make people comfortable
It goes without saying, but one of the key components of being a good communicator is listening. Make new employees or new patients feel welcome by introducing yourself, smiling, and asking them about themselves. Listen to what they have to say, and base your responses off of what they tell you as a way to get to know them. Being genuine goes a long way in making others feel comfortable, which is imperative for a doctor-patient relationship and healthy co-worker relationships.
You might be a doctor or nurse speaking with a patient, a manager presenting new information to your employees, or a marketing coordinator brainstorming new ways to reach out to prospective patients with your co-workers. Whatever your role may be, and whatever you are communicating, always be sure to encourage feedback on your ideas or instructions. Ask people what they think, and let them feel secure in voicing their concerns or expanding on your ideas. Communication goes both ways, so it’s important to allow others express themselves.
Learn automation tools
Companies and organizations are utilizing various automation tools to enhance internal and external communications – such as Intranets or Policy Management Systems. Make an effort to truly understand the ins and outs of what your organization uses. And, keep in mind that your workflows may always be improved upon.
Use different communication methods
Keep in mind that people learn in different ways. Some learn visually, others are auditory, and others must physically do what it is they are learning. Try to cater to each of these when communicating, like writing information out, providing diagrams, explaining yourself, holding training sessions, etc. If you find that you do not fully understand what someone is communicating to you, be sure to express what you need for him or her to do to explain it in a way that resonates with you.
Don’t be unnecessarily repetitive
If someone does not agree with your ideas, or does not understand what you are trying to say, repeating yourself isn’t going to change their mind or help them comprehend. Listen to their concerns and come to a new conclusion, or try to explain yourself in a different way (see above tip, Use different communication methods).
Pay attention to your nonverbal communication – and the nonverbal communication of others
There are so many different ways that you communicate with others besides just speaking. Facial expressions, clothing, hand gestures, eye contact, and posture are all important elements to get your point across. Maintain eye contact, keep professional posture, use hand gestures to accentuate certain points (but not too much) etc. So be mindful and engaging in all ways that you can, and try to react positively to what others’ body language might say about how they are feeling.
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