3 lessons on getting better at verbal communication at work:
(1) There is no end to learning to communicate better. It is like playing a great video game with an infinite number of levels. So, if you’ve felt disheartened about your progress recently, know that it is expected. Perennial dissatisfaction is a pre-requisite to continue playing the game. And, the obstacle is definitely the way. :-)
(2) While there is no secret formula to becoming good, there are 3 things that help – (a) curiosity about the audience/listener(s), (b) improving our clarity of thought (typically by writing more and better – even for things we want to say), and c) a willingness to experiment with different styles to figure out what works for us in a particular context.
(3) There are no “naturals” among great communicators. The idea – “If you want to look good in front of thousands, you have to outwork thousands in front of nobody”* – is 100% applicable to communication.
PS: I always chuckle when I hear communication described as a “soft skill.” It would probably make the top 3 of any list of the most crucial skills in our careers and lives.
(*H/T: Damian Lillard)