INT 108: How To Communicate Effectively – When Faced With Challenging Expectations

In today’s episode of IntHERrupt, Linda talks with Karen Laos and discusses how you can keep communication effective and efficient, even when faced with difficulties.

Remain confident

  • Confidence is key, not only in communication but in life in general. During Karen’s long career, she realized that she was able to ALWAYS communicate effectively when she had confidence.
  • Karen, always felt confident with her communication when she felt she was offering something valuable. Find whatever helps you remain confident, and keep it in mind while communicating.

Don’t be afraid to question authority

  • The idea of NEVER questioning authority is drilled into most of us from a very early age. Any authority figure who gives us a task or order is to be obeyed at all costs.
  • However, blindly trusting and following authority isn’t always the right solution. Trust your boss, yes, but also trust your gut. If something feels off before you communicate, talk to your boss. Explain what you think could be improved. Remember: It’s NEVER too late to change course or adjust plans.

Plan and prepare beforehand

  • The common saying is failing to plan is planning to fail. This is ESPECIALLY true in communication.
  • Karen roleplays with her clients frequently and ALWAYS has a plan to fall back on. Without a plan, more often than not, we become stuck and unable to communicate. When we have a plan to fall back on, however, we know how to continue.
  • One tool that Karen is specifically a fan of is pausing. If you find yourself rambling or losing focus, then pause. Follow it up by saying my point is. This lets the audience know that you ACTUALLY have a point and helps to refocus yourself.

Ask the right questions in advance

  • Even with the best planning and the highest confidence in the world, if you go into a situation without an understanding of what you’re aiming to achieve, you won’t effectively communicate.
  • Ask your boss or authority figure questions! If there’s something you’re unsure of DON’T be afraid to ask for clarification. With clear and concise information, you’ll be better prepared and more likely to communicate well.

Understand what makes communication effective

  • If you don’t already have a grasp of WHAT effective communication is, then how could you possibly hope to actually utilize it?
  • To Karen, effective communication is communication that allows all parties involved to clearly understand whatever is being communicated. A LOT of factors go into this, ranging from things like tone and body language to understanding and purpose, as well as what we’ve already covered. Having an understanding of all of these will ENSURE you can communicate effectively.
  • Be obsessively curious. This is another CRITICAL tool that Karen uses in her communication. You’re trying to talk TO a person, not AT a person. Ask questions, take time to listen to the other person’s response, genuinely engage with them, and show interest.

All of these tips and lessons will help you to become a FAR more potent and EFFECTIVE communicator. Master them and you can master the art of effective communication, even when faced with difficulties!
Do you have stories to tell? Connect with Linda to share them. This podcast is produced by TSE Studios. Check out other podcasts by TSE Studios, including this episode’s sponsor, The Sales Evangelist, helping new and struggling sellers close more deals and achieve their sales goals. Subscribe to the IntHERrupt Podcast so you won’t miss a single show. Find us on Apple Podcast, Google Podcast, Spotify, and Stitcher. Audio created by Ryan Rasmussen Productions.

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