Any work that tries to help people become better communicators, has to start from the view that 'mis' communication is normal.
Just using the spoken word, look at the process that we go through to pass a simple idea from one person to another.
First I have a thought, which I frame using my view of the world.
I translate that thought into language; I then translate that language into a series of sound waves using my vocal cords.
These sound waves travel through the air until they hit your eardrum, you then translate those sounds into recognisable symbols (words) which you interpret using a similar, but not identical language into an idea which you frame using your view of the world.
That it happens at all is a miracle.
That it often happens so poorly is hardly surprising.
So you see if we start with the idea that mis-communication is normal, then we stand a far greater chance of making communication work.
The usual case with communication skills is that most people assume that they make themselves clear and are easy to understand so if there's a problem, it's with the other guy, not us.
Sort of like driving a car: we're always the good, safe, careful driver; it's the other guy who's at fault.
Given the fact that the act of communicating is such a complex procedure with all sorts of hidden traps to get you into trouble, it's rather a miracle that communication happens at all!
Think of how many times you've said, or heard others say:
"But I thought you meant...."
"I assumed you were talking about...."
"No, you've completely misunderstood what I was saying."
These little phrases come out of our mouths daily.
Communication Skills sometimes requires really hard work
We're so used to saying them we don't think about the wider implications: that communication skills sometimes require really hard work, we need communication skills training to make ourselves clear and to get ourselves understood by others.
Even the words on this page: we're assuming that you're reading and interpreting them with the same meaning as they were written.
We can't be completely sure of that though.
What we can do is to take responsibility for making our words as clear as possible.
Communicating when it really matters - with colleagues, at meetings, during disagreements, at negotiations - requires skill, thoughtfulness and an ability to take responsibility for others' understanding.
Communication Skills are not something that should be left to chance.
Communication Skills Training
Impact Factory runs
Open Communication Skills Courses
Tailored Communication Skills Training
Five Day Communicate With Impact Workshops
personalised One-to-One Communication Coaching
for anyone who is interested in
Communication Skills Issues