Author: Strengthscape

The Art Of Persuasion – Let us look at some strategies for effective persuasion

We persuade people around us all the time. Whether it is asking for help in a particular project or getting information from someone or marketing an idea or project, persuasion happens all the time.

But how many times are we able to get the desired result? If the answer is – not too many times, then we need to analyze our persuasion tactics. Persuading someone is not an easy feat to achieve. However, there are some simple strategies that can assist in effective persuasion and this goes a long way in getting the desired results.

Communication and persuasion are inseparable. When you persuade you are essentially communication with the person. Therefore, effective communication will eventually result in effective persuasion.

Let us look at some strategies for effective persuasion:

Be Genuine – For any communication to be effective it is important that the sender comes across as a genuine person. This becomes even more critical in persuasion, since trust is critical for persuasion. Do not provide any misleading or false information.

Be Direct – It is always a good idea to spell out exactly what you want the other person to do instead of beating around the bush. Being direct saves time and results in prompt action. Also being to the point is critical. If you provide too much unnecessary information, the important points might get diluted or lost.

Use the Golden Words – Any communication becomes more effective, if it is courteous. Again persuasion requires one to be more courteous, since you are persuading someone to do something that they would not normally do. Words like “please”, “thank you” and “sorry” go a long way building rapport and creating a congenial environment. Even if the work is a part of someone’s job description, using polite words does no harm.

Be Empathetic – Understand your audience before trying to persuade the. Know what are the positive triggers for them, understand their value system and analyze whether a direct or indirect approach of communication will click with them. Be empathetic, if the job requires extra effort from them or will cause inconvenience to them, apologize for it and offer to help in any way you can. Designing your message keeping the audience in mind will yield better results.

Outline Benefits – If the action is going to result in benefits for the other person it is important to clearly state these benefits. Tell them what’s in it for them. This will prompt immediate action.

Provide Facts – Nothing convinces better and faster than factual data. Provide all required facts and data and ensure that all the data is accurate.

Outline Action Plan – Persuasion will not be very effective if a clear plan of action is not outlined. You need to state clearly as to what action needs to be taken as a result of the communication. Otherwise, even though the person may be convinced he will not know how to go about fulfilling your request.

Keeping these simple things in mind will result in effective communication.

The BizComm Program of Strengthscape addresses Persuasion and many other aspects of Business Communication.

Filed under: Communication Skills

Conflict Resolution Through Effective Communication

Conflict is a dreaded word in any workplace. Yet, there is no organization that exists without conflict. Though conflicts have negative connotation, but if handled well conflicts can result in personal growth and effective inter-personal relationships. Therefore, conflict resolution is considered by many as a key leadership skill. Still many managers are at a loss when faced with a conflict.

Communication skills play a key role in conflict resolution. Most conflicts arise out of miscommunication, poor articulation or misinterpretation of a message. However, communication is also the strongest tool at hand for conflict resolution.

Effective communication helps in avoiding conflict and also resolving them, once they have arisen.

So let us look at some ways of using communication as a tool for conflict resolution.

  • Be clear and concise in your message. Beating around the bush or talking about unrelated issues will sometimes escalate a conflict or not result in a resolution.  Be direct and to the point while resolving conflicts. Articulate your message clearly so that there is no scope for miscommunication.
  • Communicating courteously is imperative during conflict resolution. Conflicts may escalate if others perceive your communication as being rude or discourteous. Using words and phrases like “please”, “thank you” and “I apologize” can go a long way in ensuring a courteous conflict resolution. We realize that many times conflicts may arise due to discourteous communication to begin with.
  • Back your stance with solid logic and concrete data. If your point of view is based on logical argument, it will be easy for the other person to come around to your idea.
  • Be empathetic. Conflicts can be resolved if you are empathetic to the other person and understand their point of view. Remember that conflict resolution is not about getting your opinion heard, it is about giving way to the best idea. Using phrases like “I understand” show that you are empathetic to the other person.
  • Use positive body language. Maintain eye contact, maintain a friendly and non-threatening posture and voice. Your body language and verbal communication both should emanate positivity and convey the same message.

The BizComm Model of Strengthscape encompasses many strategies for effective communication in various scenarios.

Filed under: Communication Skills

5 Tips For Overcoming Stage Fright

Stage Fright or fear of public speaking can take a lot away from your professional life! It can make day to day tasks daunting and sometimes even impossible. Imagine seizing up every time you have to make a presentation or even speak at a meeting. Surprisingly even some seasoned speakers suffer from stage fright!

Stage fear can be overcome or controlled following some simple tips.

So here are 5 tips and tricks to overcome stage fright:

1. Breathe – It is important to carry out breathing exercises before any event where you are expected to speak. This becomes even more critical when you suffer from stage fright. Breathing properly relaxes your body and calms your mind. Most people who suffer from stage fright will tell you their throat feels constricted and they are unable to breathe properly. Practicing proper breathing can help you overcome this.

2. Arrive Early – If you are a speaker at an event or meeting, arrive early. This will give you time to calm your nerves and freshen up if required. Relax and have a glass of water. It is good for your nerves to be in an empty room and see it slowly fill up rather than come to a packed room.

3. Mingle with the Audience – Arriving early will also give you the opportunity to mingle with the audience. Some speakers like to sit with them and talk before they take the stage. This provides a personal connect with the people and they are no more just an audience but people whom you know by name!

4. Think on Your Feet – Most human interactions are unpredictable since you don’t know how someone will react. It is this uncertainty that also frightens some people. The best advice is to be prepared for any uncertainty. Always have a Plan B! Be quick and think on your feet to tackle difficult people. Remember the best strategy is to not offend anyone and respond quickly. This is easier said than done. The more you go on stage the more experience you will have and you will become better at handling people and situations. This brings me to the last tip.

5. Practice, Practice, Practice – The more you practice the more confident you will be with what you have to say. Each practice session will also help you visualize different questions and situations and you will be better prepared for that. Even the most seasoned actors need to rehearse before they deliver their best performance. Remember Rome wasn’t built in one day!

Keep these tips in mind next time you go on stage and see the magic!

For more on Soft Skills look up the BizComm Program of Strengthscape.

Filed under: Coaching

Rules For Buffet Dining You Didnt Know Existed

Most assume that etiquette should be reserved for fine dining or formal dining, buffets are too casual to bother with manners!

This assumption, though true for some occasions, is misplaced. There is certain etiquette of buffet dining, that if followed can make it a pleasant experience not only for you but for people around you as well.

So here are some rules of Buffet Dining:

  1. Beware of the “all you can eat buffet”! These buffets should come with a “hazardous to health” sign! The end of such a buffet mostly results in self-loathing because you eat things you don’t like and fill an appetite you don’t have! The rule to follow here is: “You don’t have to try everything”.
  2. Don’t pile your plate till it becomes taller than Mount Everest. Take things you like and take them in moderation.
  3. Wait till you are seated before you start sampling the food. This simple act not only displays basic etiquette but can also prevent serious accidents.
  4. Maintain distance from people ahead of you in the queue. Shoving and nudging will not make the queue move faster.
  5. Don’t forget the basic dining etiquette of using a napkin and cutlery.
  6. In most countries, it is imperative to take a clean new plate for every serving.
  7. Be polite to people serving you. Saying a “thank you” or “please” goes a long way.
  8. For self-service counters, use the right spoons and tongs and don’t leave them in the dish.
  9. Never use hands to serve the food.
  10. Don’t reach across the table to grab the seasoning or ketchup. Ask someone to assist you.

It is important to follow the right dining etiquette to make the experience pleasant for yourself and others.
Strengthscape specializes in corporate programs on Dining Etiquette.

Visit our website www.strengthscape.com for more information.

Filed under: Business Etiquette

Value Of Goal Setting in Coaching

In behavioural coaching, the goal is the central point around which strategies are formulated to move forward. They provide a reference point, an inspiration and a sense of direction to the whole coaching journey.  Goals have a mental representation and therefore they tend to present an automatic environment response.

Filed under: Coaching

Four Training Programs Every Professional Must Attend

1. Leadership Coaching Strategies

With the increasing globalization, and the world becoming smaller, the demand for business coaches has become more than it ever was. Organizations are looking for leaders who can guide their colleagues in the workplace, increase their productivity, and help them make career decisions.  These programs focus on giving knowledge about latest techniques of coaching, so that you can mentor and help the team and  your colleagues to grow.

Several activities and experiential exercises help in development of certain personality traits of the leaders. It gives a different view to the traditional problem. Attending such programs will help finding new ways to make your team strong and increase your value in the organization. Increasing self- awareness is an important aspect of such programs. Only after self-awareness, you can help others discover their essential competencies.

These programs are designed especially for managers who want to have a unique style, as well as HR professionals of various organizations to coach the leaders in their organization.

2. Building effective Teams

 ‘Talent wins games, but teamwork and intelligence win championships’ ~ Michael Jordon

Great teams are the building blocks of an organization. But, it is not an easy task. For a team to be effective they must know how to contribute in a supportive manner. It is also seen at times even the best of teams, with the best candidates, face problems in accomplishing the goal of the organization. This is where the need for programs like this can be of great help to the individuals as well as teams.

These seminars help learning the strategies and techniques for creating successful team dynamics. They help in developing skills which enhance communication and trust among the members of the team. They help the teams understand the common goal so that they can plan effectively, communicate with each other effectively, execute the plan and deliver the best outcome.

Programs like this are best for learning about the leadership strategies, effective communication, handling multicultural and virtual teams and in discovering decision-making techniques.

3. Negotiation skills

Effective negotiators should have the skills that are helpful in determining the interests of each party involved in the negotiation process. Negotiators need to have a very important skill of actively listening and keeping their emotions under control. To be an effective negotiator, it is very important to work together in a team.  They should have great decision-making ability.

Programs on negotiation skills help people in building confidence in the decision they make for our organization. They help understanding how to create value and ‘enlarge the pie’, so that it is a win-win situation for everyone. Negotiators also need to know when to accept a proposal and when to walk off the table, without damaging the relations.

Programs on negotiation skills help them understanding how to deal with cultural barriers and personal biases.

4. Persuasion

Persuasion is not the same thing as manipulation. The aim of persuasion is never ill intent or self-serving motives but it can be a tool of manipulation. Persuasion is the ethical side of manipulation. From convincing the clients for signing the contracts to winning over new businesses, persuasive skills are the most important and helpful.

Programs on persuasion skills can help one master how to influence and motivate others to do what we want them to. The best tool to be an effective persuader is to be truthful. It is very important to be believable, credible and truthful to successfully persuade someone into our deal.

Attending such programs will help us assessing the needs of the clients, making a professional presence and in the end, closing the deal.

Filed under: Training Service Providers

5 Tips To Improve Your Communication Skills

What are Communication Skills?

Basic Communication skills are a skill that everyone can learn. It is like riding a bicycle or typing. According to Brian Tracy, ‘If you are willing to work at it, you can rapidly improve the quality of every part of your life’.

Have you ever wondered how old is this communication system? No!

It is as old as the evolution of mankind. But, if we compare it to our present communication it is not the most effective way of communication. Effective communication skills are important for organizations to grow these days. It is important in our social life as well as workplace to get our ideas across to our clients and colleagues. Some important tips of improving communication skills can be listed as:

[1] Listen more, talk less

  • Communication is a two-way process, in which both the speaker and the listener need to be actively involved.
  • Everyone wants to be heard. To be an effective listener you need to maintain an eye- contact with the speaker, do not judge them and be patient.
  • Do not have a divided attention.
  • It is important that you decode and interpret the message the same manner the speaker wants you to. For this you should try to put yourself in their position and understand them.
  • Ask questions to the speaker to ensure that you have understood them.
  • Remove all distractions and do not let anyone interrupt you.
  • Give the speaker sufficient time to explain them and do not interrupt until they invite you or take a pause.
  • Make a few notes so that you can use it later.

[2] Body language

  • Every gesture has a different meaning in different cultures. It is important to make a note for the cultural differences if travelling to a different nation.
  • Always smile when you meet new people as it makes you attractive and trustworthy, along with improving your health and stress levels.
  • Always offer a firm handshake, as it is a symbol of confidence.
  • Do not keep your hands folded against your chest as it shows disinterest.
  • Use power poses to reduce stress levels and increase testosterone levels. This will make you feel more confident and powerful.
  • While meeting people avoid keeping hands in pockets.
  • Dress appropriately for the situation. Avoid ill-fitted dresses, as they will make you feel down.
  • You should avoid scratching your neck, nose or eyebrows. Fidgeting is a sign of anxiety and nervousness and shows lack of confidence in us.

[3] 7C’s of effective communication

  • Completeness- Try to provide all the information which is required along with some extra information.
  • Conciseness- The message should be able to convey the thoughts using fewest words with all relevant information.
  • Consideration- Always keep in mind the target group for whom the message is being written.
  • Concreteness- The message should be specific for a particular audience, not general.
  • Clarity- The message should be clear and receiver should be able to understand it easily. Use familiar and easy words for this.
  • Courtesy- We should not only be aware of the perspective of others, but also their feeling. Be polite in your message for it to be effective.
  • Correctness- The message should not contain any grammatical or vocabulary errors. The facts and figures used should be accurate.

[4] Picking the right medium

  • It is important to select the right medium of communicating a message.
  • Serious conversations like layoffs, changes in salary, etc. should be done in person.
  • If you wish to speak to a person who is very busy, you should convey your message through email and take appointment.
  • If making a telephonic call or video call, ensure that there is no disturbance in the connection as well as you do not have any distractions.

[5] Feedback

  • Give feedback to your employees through emails or phone calls on regular basis.
  • Ask for your feedback from your sub-ordinates and colleagues.
  • It will enhance productivity and help in identifying the problems.
  • It will be helpful in creating a healthy environment in the organization along with motivating the employees.

These are a few ways which can help you enhance your communication skills. These tips of effective communication can help us perceive the world and work miracles, and change our lives.

Filed under: Communication Skills

Team Building Basics – Magical Equation for “Building a Team”

Teamwork is the ability to work together toward a common vision. It is the ability to direct individual accomplishments toward organizational objectives. It is the fuel that allows common people to attain uncommon results. – Andrew Carnegie

Filed under: Team Building

This Is How Corporate Training Providers In Bangalore Can Assist You!

Among many things, corporate training providers in Bangalore can teach you, the most important is business acumen.

Filed under: Training Service Providers

Choosing The Best Leadership Training Workshops

Filed under: LeadershipTagged with: , , ,