June Week Four Blog
The Power of Your Presence
~ Style * Communication * Etiquette ~
The way we communicate determines whether we can make meaningful connections. I think we can all agree that if we truly want to have an impact in our personal and business interactions, we need to be able to connect with others.
Communication is made up of several components: speech, language, voice, written, listening, rapport, and non-verbal skills. Today we are going to look at how voice and listening skills can be improved in our faced paced, multitasking, driven world.
It is important to know if you possess any vocal indicators that may sabotage your communication. Vocal sound is made up of:
- Tone – The emotion and character of the person behind the voice
- Pitch – High or low
- Pace – Fast or slow
- Pause – The break in sound between words, phrases, sentences or statement
- Volume – Loud or soft
- Inflection – Emphasis on certain words or at the end of a sentence
- Accent – Sounds that indicate your nationality or region of origin
- Fluency – The flow, clarity and audibility of your words
Your voice carries 38% of your image when you are face to face and 80% of your image over the telephone. Your tone of voice affects the listener and broadcasts information about you.
- Helps to understand people and problem.
- Enables us to get and retain information
- Is crucial to satisfying a customer, team member or manager who can say, “he/she heard me and responded to my needs.”
Dos for Active Listening:
- Let the speaker speak and finish their thought completely before replying. Stay focused on the topic.
- Listen for subtle cues such as tone of voice, words used, and emotional quality of the voice.
- Search for both the verbal and nonverbal message. Beyond just listening, watch facial expression, hand gestures and eye contact.
- Focus; involve your energy and all of your senses. Filter out distractions.
- Avoid emotional reactions; we will not always agree. If you disagree, your expression may dissuade the speaker from fuller explanations for fear of being judged.
- Keep an open and objective mind.
- Assume you know what the speaker will say next.
- Interrupt; limit the time you talk.
- Respond with your own stories.
- Finish other people’s sentences.
- Think about what you’re going to say next.
- Switch subjects midstream.
Your physical appearance and the way you are perceived is impacted as much by what you wear as how you interact with others. Communicating with a confident voice and listening with the intention to really understand is a critical part of showing up as your best self.