I know that you believe that you understood what you think I said, but I am not sure you realize that what you heard is not what I meant. – Robert McCloskey
Engaging in a discussion is a two-way process. Even if the other person is just listening, what you say and what they hear need to be in sync. How can you ensure that you are communicating clearly?
- First, know what you want to discuss — whether it’s a task, some information, or an idea.
- Make sure the person can give you a few moments of undivided attention. Ask if it’s a good time to talk.
- Next, explain what you are thinking or would like them to do. When speaking make eye contact.
- Clarify your explanation with an example, or state a scenario that helps illustrate what you’re talking about.
- Ask if there are any questions.
- If needed, follow-up with an email covering some of the important action points that were discussed.
Communicating clearly the first time, saves time.