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Your Words Matter! 7 Tips to Better Communication. Clarity #14

Alan Andersen

Have you ever been mismanaged? This is often a question I ask as I kick off each “Building The Extraordinary Team” workshop. Without fail, every person raises his or her hand. If I am working with the leadership team, I follow up that question with, “How many of you have been the one who mismanaged?” Again all hands meekly go up.

Communication is at the root of nearly every management issue.

What is your leadership style?

Most leaders do not know or cannot articulate their personal leadership style. Let me challenge you: Do you know what your leadership style is and successfully navigate within it? Let's just take one small area – words. Are you in tune with your words and how powerful your nonverbal language is to those around you?

Your Words Matter

Jeane J. Kirkpatrick once said, “Words can destroy. What we call each other ultimately becomes what we think of each other, and it matters.”

Now that I have your attention. What can you do to grow in kindness and effectiveness around your words?

The number one thing I can recommend is to know your style first and then the myriad of styles you interact with every day. An immediate action you can take is to take the online Behavior and Motivator assessments. I highly recommend this as a first step in learning what your style is and how you are being perceived by the key people in your life.

Because, a huge part of emotional intelligence and self-awareness is knowing the power of your words. I suggest you start with using your words to encourage and build up those in your sphere of influence. Then add to your words the nonverbal aspects of communication.

Here are a 7 tips to get started:

  1. Know your leadership style. Order the DISC and PIAV assessments via the Next Level Communication Course and the True Life Motivator Course.
  2. Eye contact. Looking people in the eye tells them you are confident and you care about them. 
  3. Listen. Communication is a two way street. Try and listen and ask questions as much as you speak.
  4. Ask meaningful questions. Avoid asking questions that could be answered with a “yes” or “no”.
  5. Write it out first. If you struggle with finding the words write it out first. It will help you organize your thoughts. THEN go talk face to face.
  6. Be an encourager. People love compliments. Give them out freely!
  7. Grow in your self-awareness. Give yourself positive feedback regarding your interactions. Thinking about your last communication – what did you do well?

Who in your life has used their words to motivate and influence you? A mentor? A teacher? Tell me about them.

For more ideas and insights, check out week #14 in Clarity: Focusing on What Matters.

Your Coach for Clarity,

This article originally appeared at True Life Coaching


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