Fundamentals of Effective Communication in the Workplace

Topics: Nonverbal communication, Communication, Gesture Pages: 6 (1176 words) Published: May 8, 2014


Fundamentals of Effective Communication in the Workplace
Strayer University
Intro To Business
February 9, 2014

Fundamentals of Effective Communication in the Workplace
“I’m a great believer that any tool that enhances communications has profound effects in terms of how people can learn from each other, and how they can achieve the kind of freedoms that they’re interested in.” –Bill Gates. When we talk, it is because we want to share ideas, information or express our feelings with another person. Many friendships begin with a conversation. Conversely, many animosities begin with misunderstanding or disagreement. In order to have an effective communication, both active listening and good speaking skills are essential. I work in an environment where effective communication is very crucial, since my team deals with both internal and external customers on a daily basis. For our internal customers, we have different types of business units like Marine, Recreational Vehicles, Motorsports and many other teams like Information Technology (IT) and Legal teams. They all speak and use different terminologies according to their businesses. Our communication channels include email, phone, WebEx, face-to-face meetings, teleconferences and our internal Colab website. For our external customers, we deal with various dealers, manufactures, and distributors from all different types of businesses and products. Our communication channels consist of phone calls and emails. To communicate with our external customers is very challenging because all we can hear is their tone of voice and see their writing. However, I have experienced effective communication with our external customers most of the times. One particular call I received was from my colleague, Chris, who had an angry customer on the phone; after talking to the customer for fifteen minutes, Chris gave up and passed the customer to me. Chris said that he could not understand what the customer’s issues were because of the many factors involved with the issues, and he didn’t understand the terminologies that the customer was throwing at him. I answered the phone with calmness even though I knew I would probably get my earful. The customer told me I was the sixth person that he talked to about the issues. I assured him I would be the last one he would talk to that day. He calmed down a little and went on describing his issues. I did not interrupt him the whole time he was venting. I listened and wrote down all the main factors to his issues. When he finished talking, I repeated all the issues back to him and asked him if I understood everything correctly. I provided him the solutions and explained to him what I would do to fix his issues. I was able to resolve all of his issues and he was able to see the results right away in his account. He told me that he could just drive over and give me a hug. He was so happy that he wished me a great day and many blessings. He made my day! Effective communication helps team members build trust, respect, and accomplish goals together. We communicate by using verbal, written and body language. Most of us probably think communication is done mainly through verbal or written. But according to Kelly McGowan, 55% of the communication comes from body language (McGowan, 2012). Body language includes facial expressions, eye contact, body gestures, and tone of voice. When I lived in Italy, I noticed the Italians like to use a lot of hand gestures when they talked. My friends and I used to joke around that, if we tied the Italian person’s hands together, he or she would not be able to talk. Earlier I provided an example of effective communication. I was able to resolve an external customer’s issues by using my active listening skills and knowledge in the business. The customer also acknowledged that he understood me by accepting my solutions and he was happy at the results. The effective...
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