Bad communication is ineffective communication. By ineffective communication, I’m referring to communication that does not efficiently yield the result desired by the communicators.
Here’s a belief that, when you adopt it, will make you a better communicator:
“The meaning of your communication is the outcome you get.”
So what does that mean? For whatever you say to other person, verbally and nonverbally, their resulting action is the true meaning of what you communicated.
Suppose you say to Janet, “Nice hat”. What you don’t know is that this is Jane’s beat up old hat she uses to keep herself dry from the rain and she’s not proud of it. Still, you genuinely meant the compliment. She sarcastically retorts, “Well thanks a lot. I just wear this hat to keep myself dry! No need to rub it in!”
The real meaning of this communication was the same as if you said, “Janet, that’s an awful hat!” It’s the job of the communicator to deliver their message effectively so that the receiver gets the intended meaning. If the listener does not receive the intended message, as Janet didn’t in this example, it’s up to us to rework our communication so the listener gets it as intended.
Have you ever tried talking with someone but they seemed “hard-headed”? Did you try to get through to someone but they appeared “dumber than a box of rocks”? If something like this occurs, the natural reaction may be to dismiss the person as “stubborn” or as a “bozo”. What we need to do is to realize that we need to vary our communication so they receive our intended message.
It’s summed up in one word: FLEXIBILITY.
Flexibility means varying your behavior continually until you get your outcome. In this case, you continue to vary your communication until your listener gets the message you’re intending. The way you know your listener “gets it” is you watch them and listen to them and evaluate the feedback you get from them. The burden of communication is on you, not the listener.
With this awesome new belief of yours, you’ll communicate better with everyone you encounter. From here on, you understand there is no bad communication any longer since you’ll adjust your delivery if someone doesn’t understand you.
Kent Sayre is a worldwide persuasion expert and author of the bestselling book “Unstoppable Confidence” endorsed by such celebrity authors as Brian Tracy, Robert Allen, and Jim Rohn.