A critical key to all communication is simplicity and directness. Too often our words obscure our true meaning because we smother them in a mountain of cliches, jargon and unnecessary elaboration.
Instead of inflating and hiding your meaning, try deflating – for clarity.
DON’T SAY SAY
Made the decision… Decided
At this point in time… Now
Ahead of schedule… Early
For the purpose of… To
Will be able to… Can
In order to… To
That was one of our top tips offered during a webinar for which I was a panelist. My fellow panelists were Patricia Davies for Effective Writing and Julien Sammy for Effective Virtual Tools.
Patricia Davies says we should communicate to express, not impress. Great advice. If we follow it, we increase the chances of getting our message understood and remembered.
My favourite tip from Julien was on what he called “leveling the communication field”. If you’re on a conference call with three people in one city and four others in different cities, what often happens is that the three who are together take the call together in a board room.
Julien suggests everyone, including the three in the same location, should be on separate phones at their desks. This prevents the people who are in the same location from dominating the conversation.
When everyone has the same communication mode, every one has an equal communication opportunity.