The cost of poor communication can be expensive. Think about how many times that an argument, misunderstanding or chaotic situation could have been avoided if there were just the presence of clear communication. The tricky part of communication is that so much of it has nothing to do with the words that come out of our mouths, but instead include a host of several different factors, many of which are ignored. Consider that our communication is generally broken down into 7% words, 55% visual and 38% delivery.
Your actual words contribute to a small amount of how you communicate. To effectively communicate, make sure that you consider:
Your Word Selection: The actual words that you use make up for 7% of your communication. Contrary to popular belief, this is a small amount of your overall communication, but every little bit counts. Think wisely about the words that you choose to use. A consideration of age, culture, demographic, industry and education should all be considered before deciding on using a certain set of words or phrases.
The Visual: Humans are generally visual creatures. We are excited and engaged by what we see, whether positive or negative. 55% of our communication is delivered through the visual. You often hear the phrase, “always dress your best”. Surely what you wear, how your hair is styled and other appearance factors should not be the sole indicators of the value that you bring or the knowledge that you have, but the element of attention span is always working against us. Did you know that the average adult attention span is a mere 7 seconds? That’s not even enough time to take a sip of coffee and really enjoy it. The ability to quickly and positively attract someones attention is becoming more and more difficult as we are tasked with more expectations. Whether for good of for bad how your present yourself plays a major role in what it is you are trying to (or not trying to) communicate.
The Delivery: What you say and the visuals that come along with it only make up a part of the package. How you say it makes up 38% of your communication. The delivery includes your tone, rate of speech and volume. Gently whispering, “So, how are you” greatly differs from loudly yelling, “So, how are you”. If you’ve spent time on purposely crafting the right words and ensuring that the visuals that come along with your words are appropriate, spending a little more time on making sure that your delivery is impeccable will help to increase the chances that your message is communicated that way that you intended for it to be.
Until next time,