It is remarkably creepy to read a story written in 1953 and wanting to be the protagonist today, especially if the protagonist is a murderer.
I have just finished reading a deeply disturbing short story by Ray Bradbury – the murderer. Disturbing mainly because in spite of being an evangelist of modern communication, I so wanted to be the protagonist in the story where he systematically “murders” the technological devices around him as he is fed up with its invasion into human lives.
The story perhaps has more relevance now than when it was originally written. Today we are bombarded with communications from all sides and angles and the noise has become a part of our lives, so much so that we have unconsciously learnt to tune them out.
Why communications matter?
Not because it is a rare art or a difficult science, but because everyone is practicing it, shouting about it and knows how to tune out the noise.
And that is the major challenge for anyone looking into meaningfully communicate in today’s business world. How to get through the noise tuning out filter?
The process to understand this should be ground breaking, a 21st century innovation. Right? Sadly not so. Aristotle, the Greek philosopher had already documented his advice on the elements needed to influence audience in his book called Rhetoric.
So the practice of communication is commonplace, the strategies age old and yet its relevance, importance and popularity has never been so prominent.
Communication matters today as it is not enough to talk, write or shout. It is imperative that we break the noise, reach out to the people, connect with them and make them listen to our view point, satisfactorily.
Effective communication breaks the barriers of mere information, persuasion and argumentation to delve deeper into the realms of self-identity, self-expression and image making a deeper connect with the audience based on trust and conviction.
Consistently ranked as a very important criteria in job selection, communication and its assessment begins much before entering the Organization itself.
Your resume is a written proof of your self-image. The interview shows up your thoughts, wit, intelligence, values and of course expectations. A clarity of thought, succinct language and fluent speech indicates developed communication skills.
So maybe now is the time to ask yourself – How proficient are you in your ability to devise and communicate strategy, write effectively, prepare and deliver oral presentations and participate in meetings and interviews? Can you analyze and synthesize enormous amounts of information to convey your message? How adept are you at interpersonal communication — can you establish the productive relationships with supervisors, customers, colleagues, and other stakeholders that are crucial to organizational success?
Listening is the most important and utmost neglected part of communication. A good listener alone can make a great communicator.
Persuasion is a specialized form of strategic communication. The success or failure of any business is often a matter of persuasion. Convincing a boss, customer, colleague, shareholder or whomever of the value of your idea, product, service, investment or a host of other things can determine whether or not your endeavour succeeds.
The fabric of corporate society is woven from the ongoing communication and exchange between people through interpersonal, informal, cultural aspects. Corporate communications is in equal measure formal and informal. While the formal channels of communication need to be open, transparent and ethical, it is the informal channel often called the grapevine that is a fertile ground for all information and oftentimes the tension.
As an entrepreneur, manager, employee or businessman you need to know how to keep this balanced to ensure employees are happy.
So grab a book, pick a course, join a toastmasters club or get a mentor. Learn the art, succeed in life!