Written by Derek Tyree
I recently attended a workshop in Seattle. The focus of the session was on conversations that build a relationship and how those conversations essentially become the relationship. The facilitator asked us to reflect on this quote by Susan Scott, the author of the bestselling book Fierce Conversations.
“While no single conversation is guaranteed to change the trajectory of a career, a company, a relationship or a life-any single conversation can.”
As I thought about the quote, I began to reflect on its accuracy as I have gone through life and had multiple opportunities to interact with individuals at all levels of business and society. I am reminded of the power of our words and the impact they can have on others. A kind word and encouraging thought might just help a person achieve something they didn’t think possible. Well timed feedback might help a person avoid a career defining mistake. Cruel words and disrespectful communication can cause a break of trust, loss of customers, and impact one’s self-esteem.
So what is the magic communication button? Well, I don’t think there is one. What I believe is that good respectful communication is a discipline, a pattern, a way of life that needs to be embraced in order for it to be consistently effective. Try out the new communication APP below. It consists of three common disciplines of effective communication that I believe will help you be an effective communicator. It can help you be more successful in business and in life:
Be intentionally authentic. This discipline takes some effort and practice. Be willing to remove the filters you put in place that cloud your interactions. Investigate your perspective on the issue and ask yourself the question “How can I be more real in this conversation?” And “What is keeping me from being real?”
Stop multitasking. People are less effective communicators when they multitask during a communication. It can come across as disrespectful to the person you are speaking with. If you can’t be ‘in the moment’ let them know of a time that would be better to talk. This way you provide them with the undivided attention they deserve.
Follow the Covey principle ‘seek first to understand’. Hear the other person’s perspective and views before sharing your own. Be quick to listen and slow to judge. Allow respect to be your guide. No matter if it is a confrontation or a conversation in which you are providing positive feedback-always remember that at any given moment, you could be on the other side of the desk.
Derek Tyree, VP, leads the Corporate Development team for Washington Trust Bank. When Derek is not at WTB leading employees to success, you can find him on road somewhere (the one less traveled) in Eastern Washington, training for his latest marathon.
Washington Trust Bank