The manager’s no. 1 job skill is communicating clearly — which entails way more than just talking. Test your communication quotient with this quick true/false quiz.
Answer true or false to the following statements.
In my business dealings, I…
1. Interact with others in a friendly, welcoming and open manner.
2. Listen more than I talk, using “active listening” techniques such as paraphrasing and acknowledging others’ feelings.
3. Describe what I’m thinking, feeling and wanting so that colleagues develop a full picture of my needs.
4. Meet with people, whenever possible, face to face in an appropriate venue devoid of distractions, such ringing telephones.
5. Manage my own emotions during difficult conversations.
6. Address interpersonal conflict promptly rather than letting problems fester.
7. Focus on being non-judgmental and improving for the future rather than assigning blame or defending past mistakes.
8. Listen for the concerns of others rather than for information concerning my own actions, interests and positions.
9. Follow up discussions by distributing a summary that ensures the message heard is the message intended.
10. Facilitate communication up and down the corporate ladder with weekly meetings and annual retreats led by a pro facilitator.
Count one point for each “true” response. The higher your score, the better a communicator you are — and the healthier your firm should be.