Monday, May 18, 2015

Communication for Dummies

To do list © Kimberly Vohsen via

There are many books with for dummies in the title. These books are intended to help you understand a complicated subject. Here are five tips for being a better communicator.

1. Don’t overshare

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve seen phone numbers posted on people’s social media accounts. Why would you want the whole world to have your number? I really am puzzled by some things that are posted on the Internet.

Many people tell where they are going and when. Some feel the need to post about every event that goes on in their lives within the hour. Who cares?

2. Be respectful

Like I said in an older post, people thrive on drama. It’s no different on social media. The same kids that post questionable things often grown up to be people with no common sense. I do not understand why people continuously comment about petty situations. Things will get out of hand. Sometimes you just have to let things go and agree to disagree. Don't ramble on and on about your perspective when it is obvious that the other person in the conversation is not open to change.

3. If you put information out there be prepared for criticism

If you post about how your marriage is falling apart in a public forum, do not whine when people don’t see things the way you see them. If you don’t want other people’s opinions, I have a simple solution. Don’t post it!

4. Listen

Instead of continuing on arguing so you can have the last word, quit while you're ahead. Shut up before you say something that you regret. I've done this and it is one of the worst feelings ever. Good communication is more about listening than talking. When you are quiet and let the other person talk, you may learn something new. Imagine that!

5. Be willing to compromise

One of the hallmarks of a good communicator is the art of compromise. It takes a person with a strong sense of self to say, "Okay, we can do it your way. Since you let me do what I wanted to do last weekend, I will go with you to the art show on Saturday."

Another good compromise is to take the good things from your suggestion at work and combine them with other team members suggestion for an even better outcome.