How to Improve Communication Skills in the Workplace

Communicating with customers, coworkers, and employees is a huge part of any typical business day. If your communication skills are lacking, your job performance can decrease and the atmosphere of your work environment could suffer.

To keep your communication skills at a healthy level for your workplace, make sure to put in a good effort. Know when to speak up, when to listen, how to relate to others, and more. A work environment that fosters healthy communication also encourages good relationships and productive workdays.

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Know When to Say Something

A huge part of communication is simply knowing the best time to speak up. Maybe your question or comment is time-sensitive or could be helpful to another person. In that case, make sure to communicate this to whoever needs to hear it.

On the other hand, it’s equally important to know when to stop talking. There’s always a time to listen. Not everything you have to say is urgent or necessary. In these cases, let others speak their minds first.

Active Listening

When another person is talking to you, pay attention! Write down important points if you suspect you’ll have trouble remembering them later. Not only does active listening demonstrate respect to the other person, but it also benefits you. The more you pay close attention, the less you’ll have to ask for clarification or help later.

Pro Tip: Attentive listening is valuable in more than just the workplace. Practice your skills with family, friends, or even strangers to build stronger relationships and retain more information.

Use Multiple Communication Channels

If communicating with customers is your concern, an answering service can give you a hand. However, communicating with your coworkers is entirely on you, and sticking to a single channel can just irritate others. For instance, if you insist on face-to-face communication even when your coworkers just have enough time to email you, you risk wasting everyone’s time and causing frustration. Learn what communication methods are available to you and which is best for different people or circumstances. Adapt your habits to mesh with others’ preferences or requirements.

Be Courteous

Cliche as it may sound, a huge part of effective communication is just being polite. Common courtesy and professional treatment will go a long way in the workplace. Work through disagreements civilly, treat others with respect, and think before you speak. Be the kind of person your coworkers enjoy talking with.

Develop Your Ability to Communicate

The workplace requires constant interaction with other people, coworkers, and customers alike. Improving your workplace communication skills can go a long way in your professional career and your interactions with others in general. The more pleasant you are to talk to, the more your coworkers will enjoy being around you.

Want to learn more about communication in the workplace? Join the conversation and see how others improved their own skills.