Continued from last week…
For managers in any organization the task of communicating clearly can be a
complex and sometimes stressful business. Often this is because managers see
the communication process as something that just happens and is just part of
the job. And, for many specialists engineers, designers, accountants, surgeons,
scientists, architects etc.- their focus is usually on the process for which
they have been trained - rather than the art of communication. Put simply, engineers
and designers will concentrate on making things work or look the way they want
them to; accountants will put their energy into the figures and calculations;
and surgeons will dedicate themselves to the required surgical procedures.
Are you with me so far ?
We need 14 diesel saloon cars for the sales force; three executive saloons for senior management one of which must have automatic transmission –and a seven-person personnel carrier. Have you got that?
Sometimes, people who are specialists in their own area of expertise have great
difficulty in providing clear and concise explanations. This may be because
the people with the in-depth knowledge tend to:
You can ensure that others understand your explanations by presenting your
ideas using one of the following techniques.
Explanations using a time sequence
Describe chronological order of events as they happened, or as you would Like
them to happen.
Explanations using a place sequence
Describe the sequence of events by taking your listeners from place to place.
Explanations using a looping sequence
You can provide clear explanation by using a looping sequence where one topic,
or item of information, loops on the next, in a logical and sensible way, e.g.
4. Vitamins and minerals
5. Recommended daily intake
6. Suggested intake
1. Need for staff recognition
2. Outline of Investors in People programs
3. Opportunities for staff development
4. Start date of programme
The activity which follows will give you the opportunity to prepare in advance
for the next time you need to explain a new concept, idea, proposal or plan.
Use this activity to help you to prepare a clear, logical and structured argument
the next time you need to explain your ideas.
What precisely, do you need to explain?
In order to explain your ideas as clearly as possible, which will technique
will be the best?
To meaningful feedback on your ability to explain ideas and concepts using these techniques, you may find it helpful to ask for comments from a trusted colleague who is on the receiving end of your explanation.
Ask your colleague to offer feedback to you on whether or not the explanation was:
And, if you feel it is appropriate, ask your colleague for any ideas or suggestions
as to how you might be able to make your explanations even easier to follow
and understand in the future
Remember, when giving instructions
You can do this using:
Never ever assume that because something seems simple and straightforward to
you, everyone else will automatically understand the first time you explain.
Be prepared to go through your explanation as many times as necessary until
your listener understands.
Excerpts from The University of Leicester Diploma in Management – Resource
Development International (RDI) Jamaica. www.rdijamaica.com
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