Leadership Communication Skills

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Leadership Communication Skills
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When we talk about communication, it is described as the process of passing across information from one person too another using words, sounds, signs and behaviour. Communication is said to have taken place when you express your idea and feelings to another. It can be spoken or written.

Leaders of organizations succeed faster and better in an environment where communication is free. Without an effective communication system, it would be very difficult for an organization to develop and pursue its business goals and vision. This would also affect the morale of employees and their level of productivity. Effective leaders are good communicators so it is therefore necessary that this skill should be developed and enhanced for the growth and productivity of the organization.

For communication to be complete, there are basic steps it must follow: 1. The intent of communication; 2. The message composition; 3. The message encoding and decoding; 4. Transmission of the encoded message; 5. Signals must be received; 6. The original message is reconstructed; 7. The reconstructed message is then interpreted and understood by the receiver.

Communication is usually verbal, non verbal and written. In organisations, leaders mostly use the written and verbal forms in their day-to-day running of business. In organisations, it is important that leaders consciously ensure that communication channels are properly

opened so that important information can be passed through to their employees. It is also said that the communication process is effective only when: 1. It involves the use of standard terminology; 2. Clarifications are provided when requested; 3. Statements are direct and not ambiguous; 4. Relevant parties are informed whenever plans change; 5. All relevant information are communicated to the relevant parties; 6. Spoken communication is used appropriately and 7. Information is communicated in the right order.

Communication is used in different settings to accomplish various purposes. It is through communication that employees get to understand the vision of the organization and are able to contribute their skills and experience to achieving it. In our daily relationships with each other either in the family or social circles, communication also plays a big role. In the organization, it is used both internally and externally. Internal communication is between the leader and employees while the external one refers to media and public relations, brand management, etc. it also helps to build a bond between the parents (who are seen as leaders of the home) and the children. An effective communication system leads to a balanced family life.

Leaders must understand the following basic communication types. These are:

1. Self-communication: The ability to communicate with yourself daily. This type of communication determines the individual's attitude.
2. Private communication: This is a face-to-face type of communication between two parties.
3. Group communication: This is communication with a group of people.

As I have stated earlier, leaders can succeed only when they have good and effective communication skills. Lets us examine what some of these skills are.

1. Leaders should learn to listen more
One communication skill that helps leaders achieve their aim is their ability to listen during the process of communication. It is not supposed to be a one-way channel but involves two parties that should be given the opportunity to be heard. Leaders must learn to listen carefully when communicating as this enables them to understand what is being said at that particular time. Incomplete communication can lead to problems and loss of productivity for the organization. Communication is complete when what both parties clearly understand each other well.

2. Leaders should know when to talk and when not to
It is not at every time that a leader should talk. There is a time to talk and a time to be silent. It

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is better to engage in conversation with their employees in a meaningful way by allowing them make input in the process of growth of the organization.

3. Leaders should be able to read between the lines
Another skill required by leaders when communicating is to be able to read between the lines. The ability to understand what is not said, heard or seen when communicating. This enables them see what is going on in the minds of their employees even when no word has been said.

4. Leaders should always be clear and specific when communicating
When communicating, leaders should be specific and clear so that the employees can clearly understand what is being said. If it is not clear, its interpretation and the action that will follow may not produce the expected results. This is an important skill that every leader should strive to develop as it would make or mar their efforts. Communication should not be ambiguous, complicated and confusing.

5. Leaders should focus on impacting others positively
Leaders should strive to develop communication skills that would help them transfer ideas and inspire action in their employees. Their focus should be on making life better for them. When the focus in on your employees, they become motivate to do their best to move the organization forward. It also gives the impression that they are not just being used and not valued.

6. Leaders should be knowledgeable
This skill comes in very handy when communicating with the employees of an organization. Leaders should have a firm grasp of any subject matter to be discussed. Develop this skill as it will show you as someone who understands what you are doing.

7. Leaders should be emphatic
In communicating, leaders in organizations should show their employees that they can trust them. They should show this in their daily interactions as this will help the employees see themselves as partners in progress. When leaders do this, they are seen to be transparent and trustworthy. They should direct their communication towards developing good relationships with their employees. Their communication style should show their employees that they really care for them and are interested in their welfare and future. This will motivate them to make sacrifices and do all they can to move the organization forward.

8. Leaders should learn how to talk to individuals and groups
It is good for leaders to train themselves in the skills of communicating with both individuals and groups of people. They should understand their audience very well in order to deliver effectively.

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