The importance of strong verbal communication skills


Effective verbal communication can help ensure everyone is on the same page and avoid misunderstandings. Misunderstandings can occur when verbal communication is unclear, which can lead to confusion or even conflict. According to Liz Papadopoulos, “effective communication requires more than just the exchange of information. When done well, communication promotes understanding, strengthens relationships, improves and builds trust.

Do you have new team members? If so, help them build camaraderie so they can respect, trust, and care for each other. A key attribute is that they are able to communicate together.

For example, during team meetings, make sure everyone has the opportunity to speak and be heard. Each team member should feel safe to be authentic and express their opinion to the group. After all, each team member is valuable and brings something different to the table. And remember that cultural differences can impact verbal communication styles.

Verbal Communication Components

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Part of verbal communication is speaking skills. You need clarity to speak clearly and concisely in order to communicate effectively. Your tone, which includes volume and inflection, can also impact how your message is received. If your voice is loud and carrying, are you aware that you may be perceived as intimidating?

Another element is listening skills. When someone is speaking to you, pay attention and listen to understand what the speaker is saying. When you listen actively, you will be able to understand and respond appropriately, as well as ask clarifying questions. How would you feel if someone didn’t listen to you completely and came to their own conclusions? According to Stephen Covey, “The biggest problem with communication is that we don’t listen to understand. We listen to respond.

Speaking and listening are important. For example, during a job interview, the organization asks you about several things, including your skills, achievements, and how you fit into the organization. At the same time, you interview the company to learn about its company culture, growth opportunities, and whether the position is right for you.

Ways to Improve Your Verbal Communication Skills

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How good do you think your verbal communication skills are? Do you have difficulty verbalizing your ideas and thoughts clearly? Do others often misunderstand or misinterpret what you say? Or are you uncomfortable speaking in front of people and avoid public speaking at all costs? If so, you might benefit from improving your verbal communication skills.

There are several ways to improve your verbal communication skills, including:

  1. Record yourself – make a recording to hear how you speak. Quickly? Monotone? Or how often do you pause to think about what you’re going to say next and say filler words like “uh,” “uh” or “you know”? It starts with being aware.
  2. Practice speaking – take advantage of opportunities to practice speaking in meetings, or even lead presentations. Practice, practice, practice. The more you practice, the more comfortable you will become.
  3. Join a public speaking group like Toastmasters International. There is a network of clubs (in-person, online, and hybrid) around the world that can help you improve your public speaking skills.
  4. Solicit feedback – seek feedback from others. If you’re giving your first presentation at a seminar, practice with a colleague.

Having strong verbal communication skills is important in your personal and professional life. Whether you’re meeting and building a new relationship, interviewing for a position, resolving a customer service call, or collaborating with marketing on a new service, being able to express and exchange information is essential.

For more information on the importance of strong verbal communication skills, follow me on LinkedIn!

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