Developing Communication Skills

Communication is the process of transferring signals/messages between a sender and a receiver through various methods (written words, nonverbal cues, spoken words). It is also the mechanism we use to establish and modify relationships.

Here are some steps and tips to help you develop good communication skills.

Have courage to say what you think - Be confident in knowing that you can make worthwhile contributions to conversation. Take time each day to be aware of your opinions and feelings so you can adequately convey them to others. Individuals who are hesitant to speak because they do not feel their input would be worthwhile need not fear. What is important or worthwhile to one person may not be to another and may be more so to someone else.

Practice - Developing advanced communication skills begins with simple interactions. Communication skills can be practiced every day in settings that range from the social to the professional. New skills take time to refine, but each time you use your communication skills, you open yourself to opportunities and future partnerships.

Make eye contact. Whether you are speaking or listening, looking into the eyes of the person with whom you are conversing can make the interaction more successful. Eye contact conveys interest and encourages your partner to be interested in you in return.

Use gestures. - These include gestures with your hands and face. Make your whole body talk. Use smaller gestures for individuals and small groups. The gestures should get larger as the group that one is addressing increases in size.

Don’t send mixed messages. - Make your words, gestures, facial expressions and tone match. Disciplining someone while smiling sends a mixed message and is therefore ineffective. If you have to deliver a negative message, make your words, facial expressions, and tone match the message.

Be aware of what your body is saying. - Body language can say so much more than a mouthful of words. An open stance with arms relaxed at your sides tells anyone around you that you are approachable and open to hearing what they have to say.

Develop effective listening skills: - Not only should one be able to speak effectively, one must listen to the other person’s words and engage in communication on what the other person is speaking about. Avoid the impulse to listen only for the end of their sentence so that you can blurt out the ideas or memories your mind while the other person is speaking.

Track your career path and training needs with

Tips for Career Promotion

Tired of watching other workers advance their career as you continue to exceed all expectations, without promotion, in your current position? Successful workers create their own path to promotion; they don’t rely on luck. Self-promotion is key to your career success.

If you have experienced this situation, even once, you know that you can’t continue to wait for others to decide when you should be offered a promotion. Even if you are not ready to make a job or career change today, you will benefit from knowing how to put into action a successful self-promotion plan.

Unfortunately, if no one knows how much you contribute to the company, you will continue to miss the next great promotion opportunity. Letting people know that you are interested in advancing your career is the first step in an effective self-promotion plan. You can simply advise your immediate supervisor or a representative from your human resource department, but remember the old adage that “actions speak louder than words,” and plan to make a lasting impression.

Create a Career Opportunity

One successful technique is to single out an unresolved challenge that exists in your company. Try to pick a situation that will benefit from your combination of experience and skills. Write a memo that outlines the need you’ve discovered. Highlight how you will use your skills to resolve the problem and contribute to the immediate objectives of the team or department involved. Send your memo to the person who will benefit most from your unique approach, for example, your boss or a human resources representative.

Don’t wait for your organization to discover the same need. By waiting, you take the chance that they may decide to post the position. (If posting positions is policy in your company, at least your name is on the promotion list first.)

Without your proactive approach to your career and potential promotion, they may decide to promote one of your peers. By being proactive, you create a win-win situation. You may gain a challenging, enjoyable career opportunity and eliminate the need for a competition. Even if a new career or promotion opportunity does not result from your actions, you have successfully created an opportunity to demonstrate your value to the organization.You have increased the likelihood that they will consider you for the next rewarding career or promotion opportunity.

Track your career path and training needs with

Motivating during tough times

It’s the busy season for your team, and the workload will remain high for the next few months. But already you think staff members are losing steam. In fact, there’s more grumbling about the extra work this year than in the past. What can you do to keep everyone motivated and focused?

Above all, you need to recognize your employees’ low morale before the situation spirals out of control. Burnout, low productivity and, worse, losing a top employee are all dangers of overworking your team. Keeping employees motivated can be challenging, but there are several strategies you can use to get them back on track.

Determine what’s different this time

If employees have rallied in the past during busy times, identify what’s different about the projects on their desks right now. Staff lethargy may not be the result of the work itself but of organizational changes, elevated workloads during the downturn or lack of direction from the top. Whatever it is, diagnose the problem and openly acknowledge it to help the team move forward. Even if you can’t fix the overall corporate culture, you can help create a positive team environment for your department.

Communication is key

Meet with your team collectively and individually to help prioritize workloads. Determine if a portion of a project can be delegated to other employees or even outsourced. Does the group have the right tools to get the job done? Make sure all workers have the administrative support, proper equipment and materials they need.

Be approachable so that employees will give honest updates on the project. You don’t want them to encounter a problem and fall behind because they are afraid to ask for your input. Remember to provide consistent and ongoing feedback.

Revisit who’s doing what

Make sure work assignments play to each team member’s strengths and divvy up the work fairly. Failing to assign tasks to the right people can frustrate other workers and potentially grind the project to a halt. And while you need to encourage an employee’s growth, timing is everything: If the workload is especially heavy, it may not be the right time to “test” an employee’s skills in a new area.

Be generous with praise

Keep in mind that while the team is an entity of its own, it is made up of individual members who may not always get singled out for the kudos they deserve. Make a sincere effort to publicly praise the team, and key standouts, in company newsletters, through emails and at meetings.

Be specific when directly complimenting an employee. Clarify the action or skill that pleased you. For example, did it make your own job easier to receive a report a day early? Was it evident that a project summary required a substantial amount of background research on the part of an individual employee?

Remember, however, that while praise should be openly displayed, criticism should be given in private only.

Track your career path and training needs with


Upgrading by training

Finding the right employee training programs can be difficult. Many companies will offer their new employees a mentor to help them get more in sync with the company policies and how everything works.

Going through a company program is a lot cheaper than applying for a class to take when it comes to business and employee skills. Large companies that go through a lot of changes throughout the year will actually often provide the services via training classes as part of the job itself. They can create a break from the daily routines their employees have to fill during their hard day of work.

Many businesses will require a person to be trained and experienced before even applying for certain positions at that facility. When this happens, you can actually go to TNA specialist to make sure you are signed up for the appropriate classes they offer in order to gain the credentials needed for the job. If you already have enough experience and have already been trained in the field then these actions are not needed.

Making sure you have the right training for a job is imperative when it comes to setting up a lifelong career opportunity for yourself. This is because you will want to jump on board with a company long term and be prepared for the road ahead. There is no such thing as having too much knowledge on one particular subject; things are always changing and evolving, especially when it comes to business.

Being trained for certain jobs can help prevent mistakes. Most mistakes can be easily fixed, but others can also lead to disciplinary action when working for a large corporation. The consequences can range from a small warning to suspension without pay.  You definitely do not want to cause problems in your family finances when this happens, especially if you are the sole provider for your family.

A lot of community colleges offer many programs to help train you for certain positions. Applying for these can be beneficial, although they are often costly.  Look into various forms of financial aid. They will probably cost you a little out of pocket to attend if you are doing them just to get more experience on your resume.  Look at this as an investment into your career future.

There are a lot of other resources you can use as well to get the appropriate training you need. Many people will say the web is an excellent source to use when looking for upcoming classes you can enroll in. Sometimes you can even find free programs if you are lucky.

As mentioned before, getting the right employee training has proven to be very beneficial to many people around the world.

Track your career path and training needs with