Communicate Clearly with Colleagues

Communication is one of the most essential requirements of an effective business.

Published: 06th April 2015 06:00 AM  |   Last Updated: 05th April 2015 12:07 PM   |  A+A-

Communication is one of the most essential requirements of an effective business. When it comes to communicating with colleagues, most of us adopt a casual attitude towards it, thus resulting in miscommunication and cold relationships.

Here are some effective ways of communicating with colleagues.

Be a good listner: Concentrate while your colleague is speaking. Listening attentively shows that you are genuinely interested and care for the person’s feelings. Do not interrupt the speaker in between, and avoid emailing or texting while the person is speaking.

Speak with discretion: Speaking with discretion and face to face helps to stay away from misunderstandings, and enhances confidentiality and faith. It builds trust and also helps to resolve disagreements and solve issues.

Be cautious of your tone: Make sure while speaking you have a soft, polite and humble tone; and not a rude or bossy one. Tone decides the warmth of the relationship.

Consider body language: Be careful of your own body language, as improper gestures may convey wrong messages. Further, be attentive to the other’s body language and try to interpret the gestures accurately.

Criticise constructively: While giving feedback, be positive with your words to avoid hurting the sentiments of the other person. In case of a well done job, offer positive reinforcement, and find ways to add tips for improvement without being bossy.

Consider communication preferences and follow technology etiquette: Be considerate about deciding the mode of communication with colleagues by giving preference to their choice. While some prefer texts and emails, there are others who like phone conversation. Therefore, choose the mode as per the choice of your colleague or client, and abide by the etiquette.

Get personal but not casual: It is good to build a personal relationship with colleagues by indulging in personal talks as it helps build trust, but refrain from being too casual as it causes discomfort, and be careful not to invade anyone’s privacy.

Be careful about language and grammar: Avoid slang and objectionable language with anyone. Also, check your grammar. Errors in written communication ought to be avoided by proof- reading the document before submission.

Confirm hearsay: By rephrasing what your co-worker or boss says to you and by repeating the main points, you establish your listening and comprehensive abilities and clarify doubts if any.

Maintain brevity: Be short, simple and to the point in all verbal and written communication, and steer away from exaggeration. Verbose communication is a time waster for the listener; therefore stick to the facts with minimum words. In case of e-mails, it is advisable to keep it to one or two paragraphs to prevent boredom and subsequent skipping of major points. Use bullet points or sub headings to highlight information if it is voluminous and necessary, to make it reader friendly.

Paramita Mishra holds a PhD in Environmental Biology, and has been associated with teaching Communicative English and Personality Development for nine years now. She can be contacted at


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