Sometimes, even those in the upper echelon need to brush up with their communication skills, especially when you as a boss or manager are neglecting this important aspect of leadership. And at times, you need to face the responsibility of helping yourself achieve this so that all the players in your team or group can benefit from the productivity that effective and clear communication can bring.
A chunk of what constitutes a leader’s tasks involves connecting to employees, clients, and even outsiders through delivering speeches, calling for meetings, and informing workers about new policies. Therefore, it is highly important for a boss to “position” himself or herself properly before the public, i.e., the workforce. Being a boss, you must be prepared with presenting matters, especially the sensitive ones, to your audience.
Accept that there are no naturally gifted speakers
You did not come out of your mother’s womb knowing all the expertise needed in running a business, much more so the gift of being able to speak before people without having the nerves. You didn’t wake up one day having the bravado of Anthony Bourdain or the charisma of Barack Obama. Even if you’ve joined college debate teams or even the little boys’ choir during Sunday school, those things don’t automatically make you a shoo-in for the speaking superstar award.
When you’ve acknowledged the truth that there are no naturally gifted speakers, then it would be easier for you to recognize that you need patience and practice in order to master the skill. And this couldn’t be done alone, as you need a mentor or an authority figure that would help you through the process. Tom Hanks had acting coaches before he was able to hoard awards; in the same manner that Kevin Durant didn’t learn shooting hoops by himself. You need to seek help from someone who can help advance your learning in the area of communications.
Earning a Master of Arts degree in Strategic Communication is one way to improve your speaking ability, as the program gives you the skills needed to thrive in a corporate environment. Those who complete this degree are then fully prepared to enter the workforce and communicate at a high level, giving the chance to apply for jobs in corporate, government, and nonprofit sectors. For those who are already in the workforce, the degree can be earned online. This gives students the skills that they need to get ahead, without forcing them to take time away from work to learn them.
Think of the benefits of being a “polished” workforce figure
Remember that you are grooming yourself to be a respected figure that has an increasingly public profile. You want to earn the trust, respect, and admiration of people around you. Besides, if you communicate well, you’ll reap rewards not only on a professional level but also on a personal level as well. Which boss wouldn’t want that? You’re not just there because you’re being paid four times more than those under you or because you parade around the building using the flashiest SUVs.
Don’t you want to be the boss that everyone greets whenever you bump into them? Don’t you want to be the boss feared by many because of your exceptional body of work and not the boss feared by many “just because?” If you still take cues from your secretary in the middle of a “public” address, or quote rhetorical statements from good-for-naught members of middle management, then something needs to be done.
When you tune-up your communication abilities, you can:
- You get rid of the nerves, the trembling voice, and the butterflies in the stomach
- You can’t be sidetracked by hostile or off-point questions
- You create magnetic messages that allow you to take control of your audience
- You get rid of negative and body language; no more eyes rolling and teeth seething
- You free yourself from misquotes
Sometimes, it’s hard to get your message across even if you have a CBS anchor’s voice, impeccable grammar, and the side-slicked Superman hair (with even a few strands hanging on your forehead). It’s not even enough that you get your message across – you need to be understood. It’s important that you firm up and communicate in a way that you’ll be able to turn a “no” into an enthusiastic “yes.”
For more leadership tips, read more articles on best practices for business from the RingCentral blog.
Author’s Bio: Henry Conrad is a 29-year-old game developer from Albuquerque, New Mexico. Aside from gaming and being a tech junky, he also dabbles in creative writing, which allows him to create great storylines and backgrounds for his characters. . Follow me on Twitter and join me in Google +