What Will You Learn When Taking Communication Skills Training?
When thinking about communication skills, many people often just think it is simply talking and having conversations with one another. Many people think of communication skills as the ability to articulate yourself clearly when speaking with others and nothing further. In truth, although this plays a part in having strong communication skills, it is only a minor part in the bigger picture. Communication skills go far beyond just being able to articulate yourself clearly: it also involves non-verbal communication, knowing your target audience, being comfortable and well versed with your various communication channels and so on. If this seems like a lot, it is because it is! This is why having strong communication strategies is extremely important, and part of that is being comfortable speaking to the masses. This is where communication skills training comes into play. Even if you live and work in the public eye, it is always a good idea to participate in communication training (either in person or through online courses - the choice is yours), as it allows you to strengthen and expand your skill set, while being around other communications professionals so you can learn and grow off of one another. But what exactly will you learn if you are thinking about taking a communication training Toronto course? Let's take a look.
Active Listening...and Responding
Knowing how to master the art of active listening is important in both professional and personal life. Active listening is the art of truly listening and hearing what message is being conveyed, while also being aware and attentive to the body language of the speaker. More times than not, body language will say more than verbal communication. In order for active listening to be executed properly, it also involves meaningful and appropriate responses where actionable steps are outlined in a thoughtful manner. The overarching goal of active listening is to show genuine attentiveness to the key message that is being presented.
When done properly, active listening has many benefits such as meeting the outlined communications strategy, connecting deeper with the target audience, will help reach the overarching communication objectives and will assist in developing support from those who you are communicating with. It will also strengthen the overall public relations strategy, as overtime it will create a brand that is genuine, understanding and actionable. If you are a corporate professional, active listening is important for both internal and external communications, as you need to truly hear what your employees and the public are saying while providing meaningful responses. Learning this art form will truly change your workplace for the better.
If not practiced everyday, active listening can be extremely hard to master. In some cases, individuals may think they are active listening when in reality they are not. This is why it is important to enroll in communications training, as it will give you the tools to strengthen your communication efforts and provide tips on how to properly actively listen. This is arguably one of the most important things you can learn in order to have effective communication.
The Different Types of Communication, and How to Utilize Each One
It may sound obvious, but good communication skills training will go over the different types of communications and how to utilize each channel to their full potential. In order to have effective communication, all of the different types of communication should be utilized and included in the communication strategy to ensure the key messages are being delivered to your target audience in a way that resonates with them.
There are five different types of communication. They are: verbal communication (speaking with one another or to an audience), non-verbal communication (the message that our body language is conveying), written communication (such as public statements or internal newsletters), listening (as mentioned above, active listening) and visual communication (such as social media graphics). Communication skills training will walk you through each different type and identify the areas which can use improvement for each individual. In some instances, all five different types of communication may come into play at one time, so it is important that you are equipped on how to properly use each one both individually and in combination.
For those who are seasoned media pros, it is important to take communications training which includes reviewing and implementing the different types of communications as refreshers are always necessary. Individuals who spend a large portion of their time in the public eye often become comfortable and set in their ways, so reviewing and having a check in with their communication strategy is always important. As well, communication channels (such as email marketing or social media) are always changing and updating, so it is important to keep up with the times. Having refresher courses proves to be beneficial to ensure effective communication continues.
How to Inform, Without Being Boring
Whether you are speaking to the general public, your family or friends or a specific audience regarding a particular project, knowing how to inform your audience and provide them with clear and concise information is key in order to convey your messages. Too many times, public speakers are derailed from their key messages for various reasons and find themselves talking in circles. Or, on the other hand, speakers will convey their messages in a language which is not understood by the audience, causing people to tune out and as a result may find the presentation boring. This is a public relations nightmare as gaps in communication can result in a bad branding image and minimize credibility, however with proper training this is completely avoidable.
There is an extremely fine line between knowing how to inform and convey key messages without gaps in information and this is where communication skills training comes into play. The individuals who will be delivering important information to the masses need to understand and be able to read the room while speaking, and have the ability to adjust their communication strategy accordingly. This is an art form that will only come with practice but will benefit everyone including the overall brand image.
If you are interested in learning more about communication skills training or are looking to strengthen or include communication skills training in your communications plan, please contact us today and we can get started.