This week in all of my business coaching observances and my learnings something really hit home, even though it has been explained to me before. Some things I pick up super fast on and other things not so much. One of the main things that have taken me a while to get through my skull is that communication is key. I know that everyone says it, when you get married, when you want to keep friends and when you talk with employees about expectations. I have learned my lesson this week about what happens when communication stops, or when it slows down, things get weird. This has been a topic I have avoided because I sucked real bad at communicating and I knew that it would be a hard lesson for me.
When communication stops no one really notices it at first.
With business coaching employees, for example, talking with them is HUGE! Being able to tell how they are day today is important because when they are off or when they do not act normal you will be able to pick up on that. When someone is checking out the conversations are forced and they are shorter than normal. The key to making sure that things stay normal is to make sure that when things start to feel weird or forced is to bring it up and talk about it. It is so much better to have one hard conversation instead of dragging it out over months of weirdness.
As I mentioned before, this is a principle that has taken a long time to get into my head. My natural instinct at work is to just simply shut up and do my work, I mean that is what I did when I first started. However, with me being a manager and with the shifting in the needs of employees I can not do that.I have to talk with and check up on other people because not everyone has the same mindset as me when it comes to writing articles or with work in general. I knew that talking to them was important but I never knew why.
Communicating with someone is a two-way street.
Both parties are talking to one another and are asking questions and are actively listening. The part that has taken me a while is the activity listening part. Before when someone was talking to me I would hear then but I found it difficult to concentrate my mind on what they were saying. This was something that I was working on this week at the business coaching center of the world. In the past just hearing and not listening has gotten me into trouble when I would miss out on part of a conversation when I bought the wrong size shirt and many other examples. The principle of communicating what is expected, what my thoughts are on a subject, and actually listening and actively listening is an ongoing process.
The skill of being a good communicator and engaging with people in a way that gets them to like you and to form friendships is vital and is something that I continue to work on with Clay and with Jonathan Kelly.