Listening and presentation skills are critically important to managers today to be able to communicate effectively Below analysis provide an insight into the twin skills and its importance, while providing personal development action plan to apply learning in real life.
1 Role of Managers
Managers today, face the challenge of being speed yet being effective to be successful. As described by Mintzberg (1971), there are three broad role categories that a manager should develop skills of, 1. Interpersonal –Coordinate, interact & provide direction 2. Informational-Obtain & Transmit information
3. Decisional-Strategize, utilize resources & make decisions.
1.1 Why communication Important? To be successful
As explains in Business communication (Oxford University Press by Meenakshi Raman & Prakash Sing), There are three important skills or competencies a manager should be equipped with, 1. Technical
As the technical and conceptual skill may required various level of involvement, human skills are crucially important at all level of managers. When managing people, communication is utmost important, as it helps managers to, motivate, lead and Inspire.
2 Recognition of Communication
Communication, the word originated from Latin root word “Communicare” which had three possible meanings-
1. “To make common”
2. “Having gifts to share in a mutual donation”
3. “Building together a defence, like the walls of a city
This has a deeper meaning, than it actually reads out. In our day today life, we need to work with various individuals with different thinking, behaviours, cultures. To move ahead with different individuals we need to find something common, where we could build on to create relationships.
It is also key that we create sharing and truly engage in communication, so both parties involved in the process of communication benefits.
Building a boundary of focus during a communication process is important, as it enables clarity & avoid disturbance in transmitting messages. (encoding & decoding)
2.1 Elements of communication-
Figure 1: Linear Model of communication
Source: Based on Schramm (1955) and Shannon and Weaver (1962)
As shown in the above figure 1, communication is a two way process and involve a sender and receiver(s). While receiver decode the information, sender encode. It is also shown that “understanding” is crucially important in all stages of the process. Therefore it is important for sender to develop presenting skills to be effective and also to have effective listening skills for receivers to understand the objective of the communication, or “the core” of the message.
3 Listening & Presenting
Table 1:Communication Skill requirement overview
Type Of Communication| Senders involvement| Receivers involvement| Presentations| Presenting| Listening|
Conference| Presenting & listening| Presenting & listening| Meetings| Presenting & listening| Presenting & listening| Discussions| Presenting & listening| Presenting & listening| Source: Author
Listening, is vital in all communication models as it involves understanding. As Stephen R. Covey, explains in his -7 habits of highly successful people, he explains “ seek first to understand and then to be understood” as 5th habit.
Listening is a skill that managers should need to develop and Seeking to understand first involves effective listening. Most creatures use the ability to listen to understand situations i.e. * A deer would use the deeper sense of listening to understand the environment & its danger. * Small babies listen to the elders to understand the signals
In the business context listening is identified as a process and is clearly distinguished from hearing as shown in below table-2
Table 2:Hearing Vs. Listening