Chet Harding Highlights 5 Tips For Effective Workplace Communication

As legendary CEOs from Steve Jobs to Warren Buffet to Ray Kroc have confirmed, effective communication skills in the workplace are not just important: they are essential both for career success and personal satisfaction. To help you achieve your potential — and ideally exceed it — here are five tips for effective workplace communication from CEO, entrepreneur, branding guru, and leadership consultant Chet Harding.

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1. Quality Trumps Quantity

Effective workplace communicators do not mistake frequency for relevance. They communicate when necessary, and when they do, they always move the needle and advance the dialogue. Therefore, it is important to establish authentic communication in order to maintain a constructive dialogue.

2. Actively Listen

Effective workplace communicators do not tune out others while they mentally prepare and recite their own narrative. They actively listen with an open mind and ask questions to achieve clarity — not to editorialize. Some people think they ask questions, but their inquiry is so leading that it’s essentially symbolic or rhetorical. Active listening is driven by authenticity, which means questions and comments need to be rooted in truth, not in tactics.

3. Appreciate The Importance Of Building Rapport

Effective workplace communicators do not treat so-called ‘small talk’ like it should be eradicated from the business landscape. Instead, when appropriate, they realize that small talk is a functional piece of the communication puzzle when building rapport. “Naturally, small talk can get out of hand and just turn into white noise that drains productivity among high performers, and fills up the day for those who are just phoning it in” adds Chet Harding. “But there are scenarios when small talk is appropriate and necessary, and effective communicators understand when and how to use it — and when not to.

4. Choose Words Wisely

To avoid verbiage pitfalls, effective workplace communicators think before they speak or write, and choose their words carefully. A key aspect here is to respect cultural differences and understand that terms and phrases that are innocuous to some are offensive to others. “While completely avoiding errors is not possible, apologizing, learning from mistakes, and never making the same gaffe twice certainly are.

5. Consistency Drives Credibility

Credibility is not something that can be assumed or bestowed: it must be earned. Effective workplace communicators understand and activate this truth by being consistent in their communication approach. According to Chet Harding, “Consistency does not mean always saying the same things. New facts emerge and both attitudes and opinions change over time. What makes sense at the start of a project may not be suitable half-way through. Rather, consistency is this context is about approach. The fundamentals like respect, honesty, integrity, humility, and care cannot change from day to day, or scenario to scenario. People who check all of those boxes find that their words carry much, much more weight than those who may talk or write a good game but lack the credibility they need to get their message across and influence events in a positive way.

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