There is so much advice out there covering what you should do when it comes to positioning yourself for success. It can be dizzying at times trying to sift through the most pertinent tips.
Trust me, I know! I see tweets, pins, pics, and infographics splattered across my social feeds every day that ALL promote various approaches to achieving success.
Additionally, I regularly feed this information monster blog posts that push various strategies I believe to be of critical importance. Like many presentation coaches and business experts, I believe one thing:
“Your professional success hinges on superb communication skills.“
To drive this point home, I have sprinkled in supporting opinions from three highly esteemed sources that have built their own businesses and reputations around providing success based tips and advice.
So without further ado, let’s launch into this!
1. To be a LEADER you need outstanding communication skills
By definition, leaders are there to lead. Skilled executives, managers and business owners need to be able to inspire others to take action, make things happen, and get things done.
Most successful organizations as far as scope and finance are concerned, have more than one person working. In effect, there has to be some leadership and direction provided in order to execute on whatever organizational aims have been identified.
The companies that rise to the top of are almost always headed by leaders who can deftly communicate their visions. Conversely, the organizations that fail tend to be without leaders who can skillfully articulate.
To be frank, poor communication skills can and will render many a career and businesses ineffectual.
Therefore, it is in every professional and or entrepreneur’s interest to continually improve upon their own communication skills so as to build and establish their leadership capacities.
Wise words from a leadership guru
Recently, I came across an article from leadership guru, Lolly Daskal. She wrote about seven skills that every leader must cultivate to succeed. One of those skills she noted was of course centered on being a standout communicator. To quote Lolly,
“Not everyone is born to be a great communicator, but good communication skills are essential to leadership. If you are fearful that you’re not good at communicating in a compelling way-in a way that inspires and motivates others-practice your speaking or writing skills.”
Is this insight innovative? No. Not at all. However, it is advice that every professional best have top of mind awareness for. It is too easy to ignore building this skill or even relegate it to below other seemingly more important duties. However, in rejecting notions of your own communication skills development, you risk a lot as far as success is concerned.
2. To establish TRUST you need outstanding communication skills
Successfully pitching new projects internally or to clients requires you to have established a substantial amount of trust.
Off the charts sales are highly dependant on others having faith in you to deliver on what was promised. In not having a cache of trust developed, you can forget about others wanting to invest their own resources into you or what you offer.
Successful execution will ultimately be determined by whether that individual is trusted or not. Naturally, nobody wants to attach themselves to a sinking ship.
So, in order to build that trust, effective leaders need to continually work on certain things.
In researching this topic, I stumbled across an article from the ever respected print and digital publication, “Entrepreneur.” In their online post, they laid out six desirable personality traits of leaders, that if leveraged, can help build trust.
In no order of importance they are:
1. Authenticity → truly being trustworthy.
“Entrepreneur” insight: “You can’t fake trust. You are either trustworthy or not. People who are emotionally intelligent and perceptive will be able to tell.”
My two cents: Authenticity, as far as maintaining relationships, is a near impossibility without firstly being able to foster initial connections. The only way to do that, of course, is through the use of communication skills.
2. Confidence → insisting on your own way.
“Entrepreneur” insight: “Obviously, you don’t want to be rude about this. There’s a way to insist on your own way that doesn’t run roughshod over others.”
My two cents: Perhaps counter-intuitively speaking, Entrepreneur suggests that being trustworthy is dependant upon being able to insist on your own ideas being the way forward.
There reasoning, which is quite logical, is that people will only follow others who can project a degree of confidence in what they believe.
Having highly tuned communication skills is your ticket to acting on this advice.
3. Humility → Asking for feedback
“Entrepreneur” insight: “As long as someone feels like he or she is a valued part of the project, the person will trust your leadership of that project.”
My two cents: Communicating the notion that each person’s input is valued is key to sustaining the above. However obvious this is, you’d be surprised how many leaders forget to do this.
4. Calmness → Refusing to panic in stressful situations
“Entrepreneur” insight: “Stressful situations are some of the greatest opportunities to create trustworthiness. While everyone else is running around in a panic, you remain confident and unflustered. People gravitate to that kind of approach. They trust you.”
My two cents: Eighty to ninety percent of projecting an aura of calmness comes down to how well you can verbally communicate without letting pressure affect your composure.
5. Experience → trying and failing
“Entrepreneur” insight: “Experience breeds trust, but you can’t experience anything unless you go for it. You may fail, and that’s OK, because you’ve gained valuable lessons, and you’ve built trust.”
My two cents: I would add that without being able to communicate your experiences and share your wins and losses, the chances of you being able to leverage this advice would be minimized drastically.
6. Honesty → always telling the truth
“Entrepreneur” insight: “At its core, trustworthiness is about honesty. People will only trust you if they know you’re telling the truth.”
My two cents: To be able to be known as someone who is truthful, you will need to be able to have some degree of communicative competence. Sharing your ideas in such manner can be a challenge otherwise.
As you can see, each of those personality traits require highly developed interpersonal skills in order to be leveraged. Addressing your presentation skills is one such way to do this.
3. To do SALES you need outstanding communication skills
Selling to most people is pitching a product or service in exchange for some kind of financial benefit. In most cases, this is the case. However, selling can be nuanced. It can also entail the notion of marketing an idea, such as a way of thinking or doing something.
Selling yourself as a thought leader or trustworthy individual are very important marketing tasks that do not necessarily imply the exchange of cash.
In BOTH cases, however, refined and smooth deliveries are of the utmost importance to finding success.
I’d like to borrow the words and advice from yet another major publishing powerhouse. This time it’s Inc. Magazine which has this to say:
“In essence, sales skills are communication skills. Communication skills are critical in any business or career…”
Further explanation of this thought:
“Gaining sales skills will help you win financing, bring in investors, line up distribution deals, land customers; in the early stages of starting a company, everything involves sales.”
Yeah, sales are rather important. Without committing some skill-building time to that side of your professional game, you’ll find success to be more hit and miss rather than something which is regularly coming your way.
To Wrap Things Up:
If you are a professional wishing to rise above others and find success, you need to do these three things:
- Work on being a stellar leader
- Build trust
- Become a sales superstar
In order to execute on the above though, your journey must be ALL ABOUT boosting your communication skills. Otherwise, your efforts in just about all other spheres of business will be severely hamstrung.
Lucky for you, this site is all about that type of empowerment! Have you checked out the FREE resource library? It contains a bunch of content aimed at boosting your communication skills! Sign up here!
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