In order to make successful interaction happen in life, there are a set of attributes needed to implement in your daily life. Communication isn’t just what happens as people open their mouths and let a bunch of spontaneously chosen words fly out, it’s much more than that – hence why becoming an expert isn’t for everyone. Although, it should be because creating successful interaction can change a whole life, get you closer to achieving your goals and make great things happen. In this series, we’ll take you along a nice little trip into the world of awesome communication – are you ready?
Chatting is fun, right? Hanging out with people you like, adding a coffee to that and some sunshine? Simply relaxing. How come it’s so fun at the right circumstances, however in those regular Friday meetings, it isn’t that giving at all? Why is it that some people (famously referred to as entrepreneurs) are landing all sorts of deals, whereas other business representatives don’t? Could it possibly have anything to do with understanding the importance of communicating well? The entrepreneur has got it all prepared, s/he knows that reaching out to someone isn’t just reaching out, it goes much deeper than that and includes a broader set of tools used at one single interaction.
That coffee with friends is awesome because the deal is already set – you like each other, you like coffee and you’re out on a sunny day to talk about fun things. These requirements aren’t even reflected upon much further than that, and most people who go for a coffee (that is, friends) tend to have a good time. Now, this notion of what a good time is all depends on expectations and the goals that everyone has with this coffee. Although not being anything friends are even thinking about that much during their interaction, that’s what happens and the same thing could happen in those other interactions, but those require awareness.
Think about it, have you had the experience of meeting someone that you didn’t click with at all? Maybe that’s a recurring pattern? This is what most professionals experience and it all has to do with the basic goals not really being set out before the meeting happens. Imagine you’re preparing for a meeting and you haven’t slept well. There will be three other people attending it and you will go through how things have worked out the past week. You already know what they are going to say, and it pisses you off quite badly to have to have another useless weekly meeting. You know that one guy who is selfish and hasn’t done much this week, because he doesn’t do much at all, any week. You know the bitch will be there too, she just has to speak a lot but without having much value to add. And finally, you know the geek will be there and it’s an art form to pull any information from this guy.
OK, those are stereotypes, yes – but let’s just say you’re working with a bunch of stereotypes for the sake of this example (you probably do IRL too, but let’s try being politically correct for once). Now, what just happened? You have already made up your mind about the whole meeting, you know how it’s going to go and you’re fed up with even thinking about it. Yet, you’re still thinking about it. In any interaction, the person who is analytical and then uses what s/he sees in directing a conversation in the right, constructive direction – is the one truly understanding the power of communication. As the meeting’s done, you’ll only confirm that it was useless once again just as you expected.
What could have happened instead?
You could have realized that these people do have their strengths and weaknesses and then acted from that information along with the idea of making the meeting successful. Simple, yes, but it requires a total removal of all of the values attached to someone having certain attributes and certain events happening in a specific way. You have to create new ones, and you do so in real-time during the meeting, although you’ve got a short preparation phase before it all. As some of you don’t attend these more formal meetings, you do attend all sorts of interactions. Do you shop, go to the bank, talk to people, coffee, cinema, theaters, museums, concerts, festivals, any other event? Do you hang out with people, family, friends, fellow artists, entrepreneurs, professors, MDs? You probably do, and in each of these events you’ve got choices to make. Whether conscious or not, you’re making them.
Why is it important to know how to communicate well? Well, if your goal is to have a good time and you end up being angry because of something, then you weren’t being analytical enough about the whole situation. If you had been paying attention, you wouldn’t be angry and instead found yourself in a situation where you could turn things around to be fun instead. In a meeting with someone potentially important, the same rules apply. In any meeting, you’ve got a reason for being there. If you know this, and you know why the other participants are there, you’ve got a great basis from which to maximize whatever goal you’ve got for being there.
If you’re not only good with communicating, but great, you’ll be able to see how the other people could benefit a lot from this interaction as well, creating an even better atmosphere and outcome. Is there even one reason for why this wouldn’t be absolutely awesome? Think about the possibilities if everyone on this planet realized the importance and potential of great communication, we could make awesome things happen! We all know what the alternative to that potential is – the many ways in which conflicts are created, encouraged and maintained. This is correct on all levels, between individual, societies, organizations and so on. It’s what happens anytime communication is used for meeting only one party’s demands.
Everyone will win if you stay alert, analyze the moments in which you interact with people and make sure to direct the conversation in a good, happy direction whenever needed. Go ahead, pick a moment to do just that today and see how you turn a situation around completely. It’s simple, and practicing is the way to become great at it. Would you like to know some situations in which these things can be of massive benefit to you and people around you? Stay tuned, the next article will be about just that.
Now, go practice!