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Tuesday, April 12, 2005

Communicating with Discretion and Tact

How are your project communications? How do others perceive you? How do you perceive yourself as a communicator?

Let us review some rules of communication that will help us better manage our projects.

When making presentations know your:

OBJECTIVE – Goal, Purpose, Destination

LISTENER – Know facts about the group, the group expectations, the key people

APPROACH – Premise, Strategy, Theme, Pay-off for the Listener

When speaking with others one-on-one, use statements that show you are concerned about them. Remember the three “A”s when communicating.

APPRECIATING – Show appreciation for the other person’s problem or situation

Examples: “I appreciate you bringing this to my attention”
“Thank you for letting me know that”

ACKNOWLEDGING – This lets the other person know that you hear them

Example: "I can understand…”
“I sorry to hear that..."

ASSURING – Lets the other person know that you will help

Example: “This will be taken care of…”
“I will see to that personally.”

Some thoughts to ponder…

Project Managers that do not communicate effectively at the right times are destined to fail.

Poor communication skills have derailed many a career.

More than likely you will never be told that your communications skills are lacking.

Every project needs to have a written communication plan.

In closing, there are many good resources available to help us all improve our communication skills. A couple of books you might consider are: “The Four Agreements” and the “Seven Survival Skills for a Reengineered World”.

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