Getting the right message across

According to the experts, 7% of the impact we make on people is based on what we say, while 38% is base don how we say it (our voice, grammar etc…)

Unless we are diligent about the way we express ourselves, we can easily fall into bad communication habits – and our professional images suffer.

To ensure that you are getting the right message across polish up your verbal skills:

Avoid careless pronunciations such as I wanna, “cuz” and “yeah”. They tend to reflect carelessness and can tarnish your professional image.

Cut out unnecessary fillers; too many “ums,” “likes,” “you knows” and “actuallys” have the same tarnishing effect and can distract the listener.

Avoid slang and profanity. Many people find it unprofessional and offensive. In addition, slang is not universally understood, so you risk not getting your point across – especially in today’s global marketplace.

Use the right word. Misused words detract from your credibility and cause the listener to question if you really know what you’re talking about. If you’re uncertain about the meaning of a new word, don’t use it until you’ve had a chance to use your dictionary.

Speak confidently. Don’t put yourself down by prefacing your statements with “I don’t know much about this, but…” or “This may sound silly…”. These also undermine your credibility, and may mean your audience stops listening altogether.

Being conscious of the way you express yourself can have an enormous effect on your image and your future. It may be hard to break old habits, but if you want to get the right message across, it’s well worth the effort.