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Communicate Properly & Effectively!

Later on in this book we are devoting a lot of space to communication

skills. Communication skills are the single most important skill we need to
develop to become successful. Our communication skills are what enable us to
tell other what we need, want, or convey to them. Without these skills no one
would be able to interact with anyone else.

Communication can take place with words, gestures, facial expression,

emotions, or pictures. Whatever method you use, you are communicating in
some way with others every day of your life. Because of this, you must make
sure you communicate properly.

As we said, there will be many pages pertaining to communications later

on in this book. For right now, we want to deal with how to communicate properly
and effectively. This is important because how we communicate sometimes
carries more weight than the communication itself.

To communicate effectively, you cannot be insensitive to others in the way

you communicate. You need to be respectful of those you are communicating
with. It never ceases to amaze me when I see how some people talk to others
and expect to get results. Some people are so bad and disrespectful it is
amazing that they get any results at all.

First of all, offensive language has no place in the business world. It also
doe not have any place in the retail world, either. Though sometimes this
language comes out of anger and frustration, there are far too many people who
use this language during their normal everyday conversations. If you are one of
those people, you need to seriously reconsider your choice of words. You need
to do this for several reasons.

First, certain types of words are just plain offensive to most people,
especially women. To use this language in front of others shows a certain
amount of disrespect towards them. This is especially true when a group includes
women. (Although I have heard many women also use this type of language.)
When you do not show respect when communicating to others, you should not
expect optimum results.

Second, abusive or off-color language turns a lot of people off. When they
get turned off, they no longer listen to you and process what you are saying.
When this happens, you might as well be talking to the wall because people are
“tuning you out.”

Third, and most important, using off-color or abusive language often
causes people to lose respect for you and makes you appear to have less
intelligence than you really do have. This can have a serious negative effect on
future relationships with people.

In order to communicate effectively, you need to have a good command of

the language you are speaking. You don’t need to know a billion words, but you
must know enough vocabulary to be able to at least appear to be talking
intelligently. The words you use are a direct reflection on you.

Think about the times in your life when you ran across someone who used
the “F” word in every other sentence they spoke. How did it make you feel? What
impression did it make in your mind regarding that person? I can almost
guarantee you it was not a positive impression. If you are like most people, those
conversations made you feel awkward and uneasy.

The same could be said about off-color jokes and suggestive comments.
Society has grown much less tolerant of this kind of communication over the last
10 years and you need to make sure that your communication is up to today’s
standards. If it is not, you could find yourself in trouble with people or being
outright dismissed by the same people you are trying to work with,

Also be aware of comments that might be hurtful even though no harm

was meant. If you are not sure about who knows whom in a group, don’t make
comments such as “Boy, that soccer coach is one of the stupidest people I ever
met.” For all you know, you might be sitting next to his wife, son or daughter! Talk
about a fast way to end a relationship!

Today we live in a world that is becoming less tolerant of hate and

prejudice. We are less tolerant of abusive language and other similar things, too.
You have a choice to make at this point in your life. You need to decide how you
are going to communicate with those people around you? Are you going to use
the correct language and act in a professional manner or are you going to
chance alienating the people around you by using the wrong language? The
decision is yours.

I once confronted a man who routinely used this type of communication

style and told him that I found it rude, offensive, and demeaning. His reply was
that this was who he was and he was not changing for anyone. While you might
commend him for being “true to himself” his communication style almost cost him
access to almost 6 million dollars in business because so many people were tired
of dealing with him!

I’m not here to tell you how to lead you life. What I am trying to tell you is
that how your communicate will have a profound impact on how others view you
and will work with you. Life is all about balance. Only you can decide if you are

doing things that right way or need to change something. You have to make the
decision whether or not to change something that might be holding you back. If
it’s just the words you’re using, that might be a small price to pay for a clear shot
at what you’re trying to achieve in life.