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Most of us take the art of Communication for granted. And why shouldn't we?
We take part in dozens of conversations each and every day. It ought to be something we're relatively good at! The truth is that most of us are not as good at two-way communication as we think we are.
Our success or failure to communicate effectively will shape and perhaps determine whether or not we achieve our personal and professional goals. It will affect our self-esteem and our sense of well-being, and the contributions we make to our families, our jobs, and our communities. Good or bad communication can even affect our health.
Leonardo da Vinci, Pablo Picasso, Ludwig von Beethoven, John Steinbeck, Maya Angelou, Stephen Spielberg, and other respected writers, musicians, and artists weren't born as successful communicators. It took years of study, practice, and commitment to achieve a level of excellence in self-expression. Like art, effective communication is based on several fundamental principles—common sense, really. If we understand these basic skills and then practice and refine them so that we are able to put them to use depending on the situations we find ourselves in, we will become quite adept.
The way we communicate is tied to how we perceive a situation or an issue, and this 'view' is shaped in large part by our values and beliefs. Our upbringing, educational experiences, socio-economic status, religion, and politics—all these things form the basis of our values and beliefs.
We need to understand the 'spin' our values and beliefs are putting on the conversations and interactions we have with others. Some of it might stand in the way of understanding and productive communication.
The Communication Effectiveness Profile is a competency-based diagnostic instrument
It was designed in order to help individuals determine their ability to communicate more successfully. The instrument breaks the subject down into seven key competencies for communication. Communication Effectiveness is a self-scoring assessment that will help individuals understand more about their skills in this critical area.
Research has shown that there are seven factors that contribute to good (or bad) communication
These are categorised as follows:
Examines the extent to which the participant thinks about the perspectives and feelings of others when communicating with you, and the degree to which they adjust their style to accommodate them.
2 Receiving the Message
Looks at how well the participant listens to and successfully processes what others are saying before responding.
Looks at the extent to which the participant uses careful and incisive questioning techniques to successfully translate the words and actions of the other party in order to understand their meaning.
This section looks at the extent to which the participant makes sense of what they see and hear in order to engage fully in a conversation and respond intelligently.
5 'Reading' Non-Verbal Clues
Examines how much the participant picks up on body language and tone of voice in order to understand the complete communication message.
6 Giving and Receiving Feedback
This section on Feedback looks at the extent the participant is able to successfully offer constructive feedback to others and accept direct feedback from others.
7 Transmitting Your Message
The extent to which the participant uses a range of communication methods and means to get across their message successfully.
These competency areas represent critical skills involved in effective communication. Each area is explained briefly in the paragraph under each respective heading.