What do happiness, love, commitment, conflict-resolution, problem-solving, personal care, teamwork, leadership, public speaking, friendship, and business management all have in common?
Effective communication is a crucial ingredient of success.
Learning how to communicate with clarity, compassion, conviction, and understanding will lead to advances in every area of life!
You might be trying to save your marriage, motivate your team, win a client, or outline an argument. In each and every imaginable situation, strong communication skills help, whereas weak communication skills hinder.
Do you want to learn more about the benefits of communication, the areas of life that communication benefits, and how to get better at it? Keep reading!
5 Effective Communication Benefits in Everyday Life
Let’s go into more detail on some of the greatest benefits of effective communication skills in everyday life (as I see them!).
1. Your Messages Hit Home (aka It Facilitates Understanding)
Words are powerful. They have an impact.
The result? What you say and how you say it makes a huge difference.
It’s crazy how slight variations in word-choice, sentence structure, and emphasis can change how people interpret a message.
Imagine going into a bank to withdraw $100 and asking the teller for ‘twenty 5-dollar bills’.
There’s every chance you’d end up with $25 in dollar-bills.
Being an effective communicator would stop that from happening! You get your actual point across, say exactly what you mean, and leave no room for ambiguity.
Think of the impact that has in relationships, problem-solving, asking for favours, and trying to tell people a story. Communicate effectively and your message hits home, leaving no room for confusion.
2. You Get What You Want
Ultimately, effective communication is a vital tool for getting the outcome(s) you want.
It’s a kind of manipulation: you choose your words and deliver them with care in a bid to attain a desired outcome.
That doesn’t make it a negative or nefarious endeavour though.
Heck, you might be trying to talk someone off a bridge, convince your partner not to leave you, or impress an employer and land your dream job.
In each and every case, communicating with clarity, conviction, honesty, integrity, empathy and intent (all hallmarks of effective communication in my book) is key.
Of course, the opposite’s true too: failing to communicate effectively can have dire consequences.
3. Conflicts are Prevented & Resolved
Two people are arguing in the office. Someone walks up to you and wants to fight. A parent is verbally abusing their child in public.
Aside from possibly calling the police, what do you do to calm the situation down?
Answer: communicate- and communicate well!
It’s no accident that police officers say their most powerful weapon is their mouth (or the words that come out of it). The ability to communicate is a brilliant way to both resolve conflicts and prevent them from happening in the first place.
You respond to the need of the hour. You speak in an appropriate tone for the situation. And you stay calm, level-headed, and say ‘the right things’ to stop nasty situations from escalating any further.
4. Trust Forms Faster
Effective communication is as much about listening as it is talking (more on this later).
Someone may have the gift of the gab, but they’ll never experience the true power of communication if they’re an awful listener.
After all, isn’t it amazing when someone actually listens to what you’re saying? Not the pretend-kind of listening, where you can tell they’re imagining what’s for dinner while you waffle on.
I’m talking about the real kind, where they’re nodding their head, reflecting back what you say, making affirmatory sounds, and so on.
And here lays another benefit of effective communication:
The people you meet, live with, and work alongside will trust you more. And that, in turn, fosters better relationships…
5. Relationships Develop Easier (and Can Be Saved)
Trust is an antecedent to any relationship.
It’s the bedrock, cornerstone, and foundation of any plutonic or loving relationship you have with another human.
Alas, trust takes a long time to develop but seconds to destroy.
Communicate effectively, though, and you a) build up trust far quicker, and b) have a better chance of salvaging a relationship if you lose the trust.
In both instances, you listen, respond, relate, and interact in a clear, empathic, and person-centred way. New levels of trust tend to follow as a result.
5 Benefits of Effective Communication In the Workplace
Many of the aforementioned benefits of communication translate into other areas of life- especially the workplace.
Want to see how leaders and employees alike stand to gain from improving their communication skills? Let’s take a look.
1. The Atmosphere & Dynamic Improves
Effective communication in a workplace creates a nicer atmosphere for everybody in it.
After all, it means people can ask questions, understand their roles and responsibilities better, feel supported by team mates and managers, and experience less friction (because conflicts are resolved with ease) and office politics.
Likewise, a culture of open communication leaves less room for offensive remarks or gossip and rumours.
Meetings are held, one-on-ones are arranged, and opinions are aired by all involved. The chance of conflict dwindles as a result.
Relationships form and flourish, which leads to further positivity and happier results all-around.
2. Workplace Productivity Gets a Boost
One of the main benefits of effective communication in the workplace (as far as the manager’s concerned, at least) comes in the form of greater productivity.
This happens for various reasons. Here are a few:
You hired the right people thanks to a well-communicated job-description,
Everybody in the team gets on like a house on fire,
Employees feel secure and supported in their roles, which fosters goodwill, hard-work and conscientiousness in return,
Work objectives are clear, and
Everyone works together to achieve them.
There’s no conflict or mixed messages to distract people from their jobs, and
The culture of openness facilitates problem-solving.
It’s natural that productivity gets a boost and output increases in the process.
3. Fewer Time-Consuming Mistakes
Mistakes almost always happen because of a breakdown in communication.
Maybe a manager fails to issue clear instructions. Perhaps a conflict in the team doesn’t get addressed in its early stages. Or maybe there’s a logistical or technical problem that means messages slipped through the cracks.
In any case, communication (or lack thereof) leads to misunderstanding, which leads to mistakes.
Correct the comms and mistakes will fall away. Rates of productivity, sales, efficiency, and satisfaction increase as a result!
4. Newfound Creativity and Innovation
Of all the benefits of effective communication in business, the boost to creativity and innovation is one of the most important.
As you know, creativity and innovation are crucial to success.
They play a central role in problem-solving, the generation of new ideas, and scaling the business in line with market trends and changes.
Likewise, in business, failing to adapt is a recipe for disaster. You have to be willing and able to turn on a dime and meet the needs of the hour. That’s only possible if you can be creative enough to innovate in your industry.
It just so happens that effective communication facilitates collaboration, teamwork, and ideas-sharing, which are cornerstones of creativity and innovation.
5. Improvements to Customer Satisfaction
Effective communication benefits customers too.
Think about your customer service team. Speaking to disgruntled customers with care, calmness, compassion and insight is the best way to appease the situation.
The customer will get off the phone having been heard and having had their problem handled.
That’s good news in terms of maintaining rapport, minimizing complaints, boosting customer retention rates, and enhancing your brand’s standing in the public eye.
Of course, effective communication helps you get your message across too. You can communicate your ideas, values, and USP in a way that people understand and appreciate.
5 Secrets to Effective Communication in Life & Work
It’s one thing to know about the benefits of effective communication. But how do you actually become more effective at communicating?
I’m definitely still working on this in my own life! However, here are 5 tips that I think are essential to success:
1) Remember to Listen
As cliché as it sounds, the best communicators are almost always the best listeners too.
That’s because you have to listen to have anything worthwhile/relevant to say. You have to hear the problem that needs solving, the complaint that needs addressing, or the question to answer.
In other words, if you don’t listen, then you can’t respond effectively.
Get into the habit of staying silent when communicating and you’ll be more effective at it in no time!
2) Get Better at Empathy
The art of effective communication requires you to put yourself in someone else’s shoes. Why?
Because only then can you understand what counts as an ‘appropriate response’. You have to be able to assess their mood, judge their personality, and respond accordingly.
The only way to do those things properly is through empathy.
For example, you have to see and feel your partner’s pain in order to say something to make them feel better; you have to be able to recognise your team mate’s frustration to know when you’ve gone too far; and you have to appreciate someone’s sense of humour to understand what they’ll find funny.
And so on and so forth. Master empathy and knowing what to say becomes a breeze.
3) Plan In Advance
Another top tip for effective communication is to plan the conversation out in advance.
After all, failing to plan is like planning to fail.
If there’s a serious conversation you need to have with someone, then try sitting down beforehand to think about what you want to say. You could even write it all down and commit the main points to memory- as if you’re going to give a speech.
It all comes down to this:
Saying the right thing in the right way becomes much easier when you’ve practiced ahead of time.
4) Speak Face to Face
Effective communication works best when you speak to people face to face.
Texts, direct messages, and even phone calls have a time and place, but they also leave room for error! People may misunderstand something in your message or fail to receive them altogether.
By comparison, a face to face conversation means you can see the other person’s face, shake their hand, look into their eyes, and perceive their body language.
You can adjust your approach accordingly and ensure you get your point across.
5) Get to the Point
To be ‘effective’ means to do the right thing (compared to efficiency, which is doing things right). So, you could consider ‘communicating effectively’ as saying the right thing, at the right time.
And the right thing very rarely involves pointless waffle or extra words that add no value!
Be kind and compassionate, but get to the point without dawdling- especially when you’re having difficult conversations (such as disciplinary measures or redundancies).
This scene from ‘Moneyball’ does a great job of explaining the benefits of clear and succinct communication- especially in difficult conversations.
Don’t Forget The Benefits of Effective Communication
The benefits of effective communication are real, significant, and wide-ranging.
That’s why becoming a more effective communicator is an amazing goal for anyone who wants to see improvements in their life.
It’d come in handy across the board, in everything from your relationships to work.
You’d handle problems with greater ease, respond to difficult situations with superior tact, manage a team with newfound ability, and enjoy better outcomes every step of the way.
Hopefully, this post has highlighted the primary effective communication benefits that exist! Keep these effective communication advantages in mind if you’re ever seeking reasons to hone this key life-skill.