To be a leader is a wonderful privilege, but it also comes with much responsibility, both to yourself and to your team. Learning how to communicate effectively is something we can all use, and those wanting to be successful in leadership must know how to communicate well. Here are four ways leaders can demonstrate their proficiency in communication skills.
Have a Vision or Mission in Place
What is the bigger mission of your business? What are you and your team trying to accomplish and why? What steps will you and your team take to get there? Communicating this information during each employee's onboarding and periodically with your team can help them see how they can contribute to the bigger picture. It may also spark some ideas and input for further improvement and growth. Having a vision in place will help anchor you and your team in the everyday hustle and bustle.
Listen and Empathize
Communication includes not only speaking and writing but the ability to listen well. Effective communication involves active listening and not just hearing words. It's vital to learn to discern and hear facts accurately. Paying attention to nuances (and possible emotions) that may be revealed while the other person is speaking can help you better understand the situation. Being a good listener gives you the ability to better address issues, resolve conflicts and find solutions.
As a leader, you help set the tone for your company or organization. People in your company and those outside may look up to you. Thus, being positive not only affects your mindset but can also affect those around you. A kind greeting and a smile go a long way. Promoting a positive environment will cause you and your team to experience good morale, which can cause higher productivity and overall well-being. Giving a team member a compliment or kudos on a job well done, as well as constructive feedback when needed, will enable the person to grow professionally.
As a leader, it is easy to fall into a pattern of trying to do it all yourself. Reaching out to others and giving tasks to them definitely helps get things off your plate, but it goes beyond that. You can also help team members reach their higher potential by recognizing their capabilities and utilizing their skills, thus helping them see how they can contribute. Being a leader means managing yourself and others well, and knowing how to communicate effectively is one of the keys to do that successfully.