Good communication skills are the hallmark of every great leader. If you’ve been struggling with this essential ability, you’ll find four ways here to improve your communication and become a better director, manager, mentor and guide at your church.
One of the skills you must master in order to become a better leader is active listening. Communication is a two-way street, and that means you need to listen just as much as you speak. Active listening is a communication technique that is used in conflict mediation and counseling. This skill focuses on fully listening to what the other person is saying, making a concerted effort to understand what is being shared and then remembering the content of the conversation. Active listening allows you to better retain information, which you can then use later. It will also make your team members feel valued and encourage them to be honest in their own communication.
Less is Not More
There is a good chance that you’re not communicating with your team enough. That old adage that less is more doesn’t apply to the area of communication. If you’re leaving your team wondering about instructions, orders or strategy, tasks and assignments won’t get accomplished in the way you want. It’s best to make sure that you’re answering all questions, giving feedback and offering guidance in a prompt manner. In this connected world, team members are used to receiving relevant communications through their phones the moment it becomes newsworthy. The same should be true for the information you dispense. Be active, swift and responsive.
Writing Skills Matter
Although most people think of the spoken word when they consider the concept of communication, your written communication skills matter just as much. To truly become a better leader, you need to be able to write well in a variety of forms, including emails, texts and more formal documents. The key to good writing is focusing on your main points, being specific, and being concise.
Avoid Gossip at All Costs
Finally, to become the best leader you be, you must remember that you are not just a team member. You’re in charge. That means you must not participate in office gossip. Often, this is easier said than done. It’s human nature to indulge in talking about people, discussing drama and getting involved in the personal lives of others. However, gossip can be hurtful to team members, and it can create a negative culture in the workplace. It’s best that you not only refrain from gossip but also discourage it amongst your colleagues.
Becoming a better leader is largely about improving your communication skills. By employing active listening, providing more information, improving your writing and avoiding gossip, you can take the steps necessary to be the best version of yourself and furnish your staff the direction they need.