5 Signs You’re a High Caliber Communicator

5 signsCommunication is a leader’s most important skill.  Whether you are a seasoned leader, newly appointed to your leadership role, or seeking to be on the fast-track for advancement, communication will play a vital part in your success.  Take a moment and think about your current communication and ask yourself if these five signs are true of you.

You know the difference between assertive, aggressive, passive, and passive-aggressive.  And, you strive to be consistently assertive in your communication.  Assertive communication is communication which respects the rights of both parties. An assertive communicator is respectful to others without being a pushover or a doormat.  As a leader this means you can have a performance management conversation that leaves your team member clear about where they need to improve and what is expected of them, (no having to guess, which is a sign of passive-aggressiveness) while still feeling valued and appreciated.

You think about the impact your communication has on people’s feelings. High caliber communicators know the way people feel is a big driver of engagement, teamwork, commitment, and many other positive employee traits. How a leader communicates with their employees has a direct impact on their feelings.  A high caliber leader is aware of this and works to communicate in a way that helps people feel respected, appreciated, and valued.

You know that words matter and you choose wisely. A high caliber communicator avoids “command and control” language and instead chooses language that empowers.  A high caliber communicator knows the words to choose that can drive cooperation and commitment and strives to avoid the words that trigger defensiveness and disengagement.  Do you know the words to choose and the words to lose?

You don’t put off feedback, performance management, or difficult conversations. High caliber communicators have the skills to handle difficult conversations with tact and finesse.  You know you are a high caliber communicator, and likely a high caliber leader, if you are able to give negative feedback directly and respectfully. Ignoring performance problems because the conversation is uncomfortable can negatively impact the entire team. A high caliber leader has these conversations in a timely manner.

You are able to apologize, or admit when wrong. High caliber communicators know they aren’t always right.  And, they are able to admit when they have made a mistake and offer an apology (which is more than simply saying “sorry” – a word that is a poor choice). They are able to swallow their pride, put their ego in check, and admit when they are wrong. They know that an effective apology isn’t about excuses or blame. Rather, it is about honoring the feelings of others and focusing how they intend to make it right (or better) in the future.  High caliber leaders who are able to apologize build trust and respect within their teams.

Are you a high caliber communicator? Which area would you like to improve?

Whether you have years of experience as a leader or you are a team member looking for enhanced career success, this high caliber communication skills webinar can be your ticket to success! Join us tomorrow, February 18, 2016. To thank you for reading this blog, I’d like to offer you the 10% discount code – SOCIAL.

Pamela Jett is a communication skills and leadership expert who knows that words matter! In her keynote presentations, workshops, books and online learning programs, she moves beyond communication theory into practical strategies that can be implemented immediately to create the kind of leadership, teamwork, and employee engagement results her clients want.

You might also enjoy:

Decide – Are You Cut Out for Leadership?

3 Keys to High Caliber Communication – Are You Using Them?

“You Don’t Understand” – Words to Choose and Words to Lose


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