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In the workplace, effective communication is the key to not only achieving good performance but sustaining a good working relationship. Clear communication build trust among employees, thus increasing productivity and employee morale. Effective and clear communication is an asset to an organisation in that it keeps all processes running smoothly. Teamwork, growth and innovation all depend on clear communication (Heller, 2005). Unclear communication has the potential to create trust issues within the organisational hierarchy as well as conflicts within the workplace. When a message is misunderstood, the intended message is misunderstood, and this can create organisational problems.
There are four types of communication styles, including passive, assertive aggressive and passive-aggressive. Passive communicators do not express needs and feelings and allow others to express themselves. Aggressive communication is emphasized by speaking in a demanding and loud voice as well as maintaining intense eye contact and exert dominance by threatening, intimidating or blaming others. Passive-aggressive communicators do not confront issues rather just muter to themselves and experience difficulties expressing facial expressions and acknowledging anger. Assertive communication features clear and open communication by expressing feelings, ideas and desires while still considering the need of others (Brounstein, 2008). It is considered the most effective communication style.
Rapport is the ability to interact and connect with other people in a way that creates trust and understanding. Creating rapport requires effective communication skills. From the verbal communication to bodily cues such as facial expressions, voice volume and pitch, posture and language used, effective communication is necessary for creating rapport. While it is easy to connect with people who are similar, the opposite is different. For effective teams and interactions, it is significant to create rapport first through effective and clear communication.
Purpose of questioning
There are different types of questioning from closed to open and probing questions. The purpose of the different types of questioning is to uncover more information about a topic. Questioning ensures that there is effective communication in that parties ain nay communication are able to clarify on misunderstood or unprovided information. Questioning also challenges the thinking of employees by bringing in new information in the communication process. This ensures that the provision of information is accurate and clear in that questions offer the room to clarify on any misunderstandings.
Non-verbal communication is the use of bodily cues such as facial expressions and body posture and are commonly used to portray feelings and emotions. Non-verbal communication is important in that it makes the message more interesting and appealing. It influences the whole communication process. It not only complements the verbal message rather also substitute, regulate or accent the verbal message. When there is a conflict between verbal and nonverbal communication, people commonly rely on the non-verbal clues to interpret the message as opposed to verbal clues (Phutela, 2015). Much of human communication is non-verbal, which indicates that much of what people say comes from their cues. Thus, for effective communication, non-verbal communication is extremely significant.
There are different non-verbal signals from facial expressions to personal appearance. Some nonverbal signals can be sent through their own personal appearances such as first appearance, personal image and facial expressions (Khan-Panni, 2001). Even before one starts speaking, audiences have already made certain assumptions from the attitude or dressing. Facial expressions tend to occur without warning and always portray the true feeling. It is thus important to always be articulate, and ware of non-verbal signals in that people perceive these signals more than the verbal communication. Portraying a confident voice while looking pessimistic will portray a wrong message.
Elements of effective listening
Effective communication occurs when the message is passed on and understood, which makes listening part of the communication process. Elements of effective listening include looking for non-verbal cues, listening to the message, being receptive to the feelings of the communicator and having undivided attention. Effective listening focuses on the speaker and watching for non-verbal signals. It is important to avoid any distractions that can make the mind to wander away. Furthermore, a good listener listens first and asks questions later, as opposed to interrupting the speaker. In addition, feelings should not be neglected in that they are part of communication.
Nature of common business problems
The nature of common business problems is uncertainty. Businesses are uncertain about tomorrow and decisions are made based on perception and estimations. From innovation to government laws and policies, businesses are unaware of what tomorrow brings. A good example is that a business can decide to acquire a specific technology today only for a more efficient technology to be innovated tomorrow. this can create conflicts within the organisation due to ineffective uncertainty management. At such, addressing business problems is a process with different processes.
Process of analysing a problem
When analysing any business problem, there are six common steps that one can follow including understanding the problem, defining the central issues, defining the goal, identifying all alternative solutions, selecting the best alternative and developing a plan for implementation. The first step is understanding whether the problem is real. This requires on to identify the nature of the problem and why it is an issue to the business. The other step is to define all the central issues involved in the problem. This will ensure that the serious issues are separated from the trivial issues and the functional areas affected by the problem. The other step is to define the business goal. Organisational goals are significant in determining how problems are handled. The organisational goals provide guidance into alternatives analysis (Gonsenhauser, 2017). The other step is to identify and evaluate all the available solutions to the problem. All the possible solutions should be identified by using creativity and strategic analysis to identify possible alternatives. The other step is to analyses the alternative and selects the best alternative. After selecting the best solution, the last step is to develop a plan to implement the solution following business policies and practices.
Effective telephone call
There are several factors that make a telephone call effective. One of the major factors is making a good first impression. This involves using a voice portraying interest by visualising the caller and speaking with enthusiasm. When answering a telephone call, it is important to answer promptly and great the caller with respect. Be clear and polite to create rapport. When putting a caller on hold, minimise the hold time and apologise if put on hold for a long time. When making a call, it is important to prepare for the call, make the call in a respectful manner and consider the time zones.
Effective business meeting
In any meeting, the responsibility of the chairperson is to ensure that the agenda is followed and addressed effectively. A productive meeting includes the right people, takes less time, and addresses the intended agenda effectively while a productive meeting does not address the agenda. To make a positive contribution to a meeting, one needs to strictly make a contribution based on the meeting agendas and avoid introducing new agendas (Amos, 2002). A formal agenda is an agenda that is known to all participants, but an informal agenda is that which is in the mind of participants and not known to all participants. The minutes of a meeting act as a record of what was agreed and a reference for the future.
Effective business presentation
Presentations are used to present information to other people. In the workplace, presentations can be done when presenting budgets, important decisions, presenting the end of year results, analysis business elements, or when preparing to undertake a business project. Any activity where information needs to be shared with other people can require a presentation. An effective presentation focuses on the needs of the audience, connect with the audience, keeps it simple, provides relevant information and stats by grabbing the attention of the audience (Gallo, 2010). Visual aids are used in making presentations. An effective visual aid supports the content, are visible, relevant, audience-focused and memorable. Ineffective visual aids are irrelevant and overloaded with many graphics making them invisible (McConnon, 2002). Visual aids are not the presentation itself and thus should not be overloaded with information or graphics. They should be relevant enough to support the presentation in a simple manner.
Good written communication
Good written communication is clear, concise and complete. Effective written communication ensures that the reader understands the message. The tone is very significant for effective written communication. Business communication, for example, takes on a formal tone. The tone determines the keywords and phrase to be used to portray the message effectively. The message should be clear with a pre-defined agenda and facts stated in a chronological manner. The agenda should come out clearly and be the messages should seek to elaborate on the agenda without deviation (Seely, 2005). Unnecessary information should not be included in the written communication. The language should be inoffensive and should avoid making accusations. Making threats, for example, in written communication, is ineffective and offensive to the reader. The language used should not be offensive to the intended reader to ensure the message is well understood.
Task 4 Presentation Attached
Use any evidence you have
Planning the meeting was effective and mind-opening. We set the time and agenda for the meeting well before time. The meetings were to be done virtually using skype. During the planning period, patients were clear and precise and presented their ideas in a logical manner. However, at times, some of the participants acted in a domineering manner, and this affected the flow of the planning process.
An effective meeting is productive in that it achieves the set objective. The meeting should be relevant and engaging with assertive communication style being used. The meeting should be efficient with agendas being discussed effectively in a collaborative manner. The set goal of the meeting should e achieved in a safe and logical manner. All participants should be allowed to air their opinions with the chairperson controlling the meeting.
Amos, J (2002) Making Meetings Work, How to Books
Brounstein, Marty (2008) Communicating Effectively for Dummies, John Wiley & Sons Inc
Gallo, C. (2010) The Presentation Secrets of Steve Jobs: How to Be Insanely Great in Front of Any Audience, McGraw Hill
Gonsenhauser, A. (2017). Problem Analysis | Five Easy Steps To Analyze Any Problem | SiriusDecisions. Retrieved 2 January 2020, from https://www.siriusdecisions.com/blog/fiveeasystepstoanalyzeanyproblem
Heller, R (2005) Communicating Clearly, Dorling Kindersley
Khan-Panni, Phillip (2001) 2-4-6-8 How do you Communicate? How to Books
McConnon, S (2002) Presenting with Power, How to Books
Phutela, D. (2015). The importance of non-verbal communication. IUP Journal of Soft Skills, 9(4), 43.
Seely, J. (2005) Oxford Guide to Effective Writing and Speaking, Oxford University press
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