So many people today, go through their busy day without thinking about the best way to connect and communicate effectively with others. I believe that most of us are guilty of being so wound up in what we must do that we even may appear to ignore some of those around us. And in business, this is a dangerous thing to do.
We have opportunities of connecting with and helping many people in just one day. Often it is our responsibility to support, mentor or give guidance to those who work around us. So here are some ways to easily connect and communicate with others:
Smile: Giving a smile to others in passing is the easiest action to do but the one most often overlooked as being a great way to connect with others. A smile can lead to a conversation in some cases and then this may lead to developing a business relationship. Some people can start a conversation more easily than others, but it most often will begin with a smile.
You may not know it at the time, but by smiling at another person in passing, may even change that whole day for the other person. They could be having a terrible day and just by having someone smile at them, could make all the difference.
Have a giving or service Mindset: It’s important to have a giving or service mindset, especially when you’re in a position of authority and power. Simply having a title automatically puts you in a position of authority and influence. The responsibility of a leader is to guide people through change and the only way you can do that is by having a mindset of helping and supporting them.
Actively listen: Actively listening and asking relevant questions to others, may result in you getting to know them more deeply and finding out where they’re at in life. Everyone likes to be asked questions about themselves and their work or business. It makes them feel special and that you really do care. Actively listening and taking the time to find out about someone else and their situation also reduces assumptions and unconscious bias. It also helps to build rapport. Rapport means you can connect and build mutual trust. By doing this, team members and customers will feel safe to share their challenges and problems with you without feeling threatened. This should not be used to manipulate others because, if you use manipulation as your approach, you’ll be seen as not being authentic.
Be Authentic: Be yourself and do not try to be like others who may appear to be successful. You can be successful in your area of expertise by being yourself and being genuine. Other people can see through when you are not being authentic but trying to be like others.
Ask for feedback: If you’re in a position of authority, one of the fastest ways you can grow is to ask for others’ opinions. This not only gives you valuable information about ways to improve and what others think, but also builds rapport and trust with those whom you work with. When you ask others for their feedback, this empowers them and makes them feel valued.
Have empathy: This is the ability to understand and share feelings with others. You do not necessarily have to agree with them, you just need to try to understand them. Try to learn more about the person and their life outside the business or work. Once you have found a common ground can you find a way forward more easily.
Set the environment for conversations: If you want to resolve an issue between you and another person or to reduce nervousness or tension, it may help if you sit beside the person you are having a conversation with rather than opposite them. This a simple yet a highly effective way of reducing the intimidation factor. People will feel less threatened and be more open to sharing things with you.