Effective communication skills are beneficial in most professions, but they’re especially important for anyone in a leadership role. Good communication as a leader can make a difference in how much your team looks up to you and how united they are as a team. When there’s trust and a good rapport between a leader and their staff, it can affect efficiency and productivity. It’s helpful to watch and learn from leaders who are most effective. When you do, you may notice that there are several signs of good communication as a leader.
Being aware of what’s going on in the department is an important part of leadership. To be sure your team is open and honest with you, it’s important to be approachable. Your employees need to know that you’re available to hear their concerns and that you’re genuinely interested in their challenges and ideas.
Authentic leaders are those who let others know who they are. To be an authentic leader, instead of trying to project a false image of who you are, reveal your own strengths and weaknesses to others. Honesty and vulnerability can inspire trust and loyalty in others. Develop a strong sense of self, and work on leading your team without compromising your values.
When one employee or the whole team accomplishes something, effective leaders communicate appreciation. When your staff knows that hard work is noticed and appreciated, morale improves along with productivity. If you have to have difficult conversations such as giving an employee feedback about things they may not be doing as well as you’d like them to, it’s good practice to point out other things that they’ve done well at the same time. People don’t tend to work on improving their performance if leaders only notice what they’re doing wrong.
Good communication as a leader requires conciseness and clarity. In meetings and in written communication, you need to get to the point without rambling. Work on making sure each employee has a clear understanding of their role and give feedback that helps them know exactly what’s expected of them. When you delegate tasks, let the employee know what needs to be done and why it’s important.
When leaders hold back important information, it can make staff uneasy and distrustful. Effective communication requires transparency, which means letting staff know what you know about things that may be going on with the company.
Those in leadership positions sometimes make the mistake of putting the company first without keeping in mind that everyone who works there is a human being who is facing challenges outside work. Be respectful and supportive of team members and things they may be going through.
Communication is a two-way street; an important aspect of good communication as a leader is effective listening skills. When a staff member is talking to you, focus exclusively on what they’re saying. Don’t let conversations be interrupted by phone calls or emails. Use active listening to be fully engaged in the conversation. This may include taking notes, asking questions and repeating back to them what you’ve heard.
It’s important to pay attention to not only what people say but how they say it. Pay attention to facial expressions and body language. If the things a person is saying don’t agree with the look on their face, find out what’s going on.
Willingness to Learn More
Effective leaders know that there’s always more to learn about communication and other leadership skills. They welcome feedback and suggestions of things that could use improvement.
Reach out to Peaceful Leaders Academy to learn about opportunities for training in leadership skills.