Communication includes diplomacy – because without being diplomatic, you will not be an effective communicator. If you are a small business owner, you need to improve your communication skills, both personal and professional.
Identify Your Style
Each person has a particular style of communicating with others. Communication style is not only about how you talk to others, but also includes your body language, your vocabulary, your tone and pitch. Once you have identified your communication style, you can work towards improving it. You can also emulate someone who you think is a good communicator.
Improve Tone and Pitch
The first hurdle has been crossed. You have identified your communication style. Now we have to work towards improving it. Start by discussing the tone and pitch that you use while communicating. If you have a high pitch, you may come across as nervous. Work towards lowering your pitch. The tone of your voice is also important. The tone of your voice discloses your confidence level – most people can figure out by the tone whether a person is arrogant or just plain shy. Your tone should be neutral, but not to the extent where you sound boring. You have to work towards modulating your voice, its pitch and tone according to your surroundings.
Also remember not to talk too fast, as this may indicate nervousness; or talk too slowly, as this sounds like you are boring and dull. Keep the pace of your speech normal.
Animate and Enunciate
It is very important that you enunciate your words while speaking. Communication becomes easier when the people you are communicating with can understand you – and that is possible if you speak clearly and enunciate the words. It does not help communication if the person has to ask you to repeat every word.
Animate does not mean that you make a fool of yourself while communicating, it just means being livelier while talking. Do not be dull or talk in monotones, as this will make the listener tune out from what you are saying. Adjust your voice modulation, lower and increase pitch whenever necessary, use hand gestures to get the attention of the listener. Make sure that you are not boring the person you are to speaking to.
Make sure your vocabulary is good – right or wrong, you are often judged on the kind of words you use and the kind of language you speak. Do not use words to that you do not know the meaning of. You will only make yourself look strange by using a word out of context. Do not try to use big words. Use words that are easily understood and that are easy to pronounce. Pronunciation is a big part of your vocabulary and enhances your communication skills. If you cannot pronounce a word or are unsure of its pronunciation, avoid using it all together.
As a small business owner, you have to communicate with different people from all walks of life. By following the tips above, your communication will be more effective and command attention.