Being able to communicate effectively is a fundamental component of being understood.
However, quite often, your communication is only partially successful because this did not occur. This can be rooted in many factors, some your responsibility and some your listeners.
The following 7 strategies will help you to ensure that other people better understand the thoughts and intentions you are trying to convey:
1. Intentionally incorporate more non-verbal communication
Non-verbal communication reinforces your words and gives them depth by helping them to convey emotions, attitudes, and feelings.
Start being more intentional in the use of non-verbal tools like tone, facial expressions, gestures, and physical space to enhance your message.
2. Use more precise words
Improving your vocabulary will provide you with the verbal dictionary to select more appropriate words enabling you to be more precise in describing what you are saying.
This is especially helpful during phone calls where much of the nuance of non-verbal communication disappears.
3. Embrace the habit of regularly writing
As the process of writing well requires you to develop the ability to organize your thoughts, simplify your words, and clarify your thinking - embracing the habit of regularly writing will train your brain to become more effective at structuring messages that are easier for others to process and understand whether you're writing or speaking.
4. Ask your counterpart to paraphrase
From time to time, ask your counterpart to paraphrase what you have conveyed as they understood it.
This enables you to offer immediate clarification if necessary, then move on to the next point knowing you are building a solid foundation of comprehension.
5. Incorporate more pictures and diagrams
As our brains think in images, this approach is a great way to convey much more information and context than can be done solely using words.
Do this by incorporating more graphs, pictures, and charts into your communication to bridge the gap between complex ideas and understanding.
6. Use simple language that is easy to process
Always remember that the primary goal of communication is to be understood.
As such, the simpler you keep your language, the easier it will be for the other person to process and comprehend what you are trying to say.
7. Use ChatGPT to get feedback
An efficient way to get immediate feedback on whether or not your messaging will be easily understood is to put it into ChatGPT and ask for feedback on its quality and complexity.
This is akin to having a tutor regularly helping you to enhance your ability to shape your messages.
Miscommunication can lead to frustration, confusion, and inefficiency. By being intentional and applying strategies like these you will ensure that you are understood by the people you are communicating with.