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How to Deliver Constructive Criticism

Delivering Constructive Criticism

Constructive criticism is useful when used with the aim of improving circumstances in the place of work, but it can be very challenging to receive or give construction criticism. When emotions are involved, it could become a delicate matter. The goal is to handle constructive criticism in an effective way that employees will benefit from.

Timing

Timing is important when delivering constructive criticism. While some instances can be addressed right away, others can be done on the employee’s next annual review. When it comes too late, the employees might dismiss any help and likewise, if it is done too early, the employees might doubt themselves. Deciding when feedback is given may rely on key situations. Usually the best time to give feedback is directly after an occurrence, addressing the problem right away.  If the problem is allowed to continue, it could affect the employee, as well as co-workers. The value of the feedback decreases as time passes.  Informal or formal feedback can be used.

Preparation

It is commonly easier to deliver constructive criticism when properly prepared. Decide on what situation needs to be addressed and on what information needs to be conveyed. A sense of understanding toward the employee will result in better performance, and a better relationship between employees and management.

Location

The location should allow for the employees to speak in private, away from other co-workers. Other factors can affect what would be the best time, such as if the employee is getting ready to go to lunch or tired. The manager should also consider how they are feeling before setting a time.

Setting Goals

Goal setting goes both ways. Both parties need to know the reason of the goal and what efforts will need to be made to achieve them. You should avoid letting the goal come across like an order or demand. Let the employee know what you want to see in regards to achievements, but also ask them what they want to gain from it. When goals are made as a team they will be more willing to work for it and succeed.

What not to do

Knowing what negative phrases and sensitive topics to avoid can be just as crucial. Try and avoid the following when delivering constructive criticism:

  • Talking Down
  • Attacking or Blaming
  • Becoming Emotional
  • Not giving the other person a chance to speak

Following up

Schedule a follow-up meeting to check on progress and if concerns have risen. Be available to the employee and provide feedback on progress. If goals were met and the employee has improved, congratulate them. If not, go back to the drawing board and see what other actions need to be taken. Do not leave the employee in the dark about their progress or shortcomings.

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The Importance of Interpersonal Skills

The Importance of Interpersonal Skills

Some people are naturally magnetic and energetic and just have a way with others. You may not see yourself as charismatic or having interpersonal skills, but being that memorable individual can be achieved through acquiring communication skills, negotiation techniques and learning how to network.

Words are the tools of communication and your choice of words can influence the attitudes, thoughts, and actions of others. Responding effectively and appropriately can be done by paying attention to the language of other people and listening to what they are really saying.

Questions are excellent means of obtaining information and a good question can make for an appealing dialogue. It can break new grounds, spark interest, and display your own honesty to finding out what others have to say.

These are some keys to communicating effectively:

  • Do not be casual – The use of bad grammar, or slang can be a detraction especially when communicating with employers or potential clients.
  • Remain on point – Stick to what is relevant to the discussion, and getting your message across in the shortest way possible.
  • Know your audience – Keep in mind the attention, readiness, educational level and age of the listeners. This will prevent them from being underwhelmed or overwhelmed.
  • Emphasize key ideas – Accent in communication can include examples, repetition or simply saying that “this is really a point I want to highlight.”
  • Connection – The more others see you as one of them, the better their response will be.

It is not only about verbal communication. Voice intonation and body language also send a message to other people. Practicing your verbal and non-verbal communication skills are equally as important. A change in your tone may change the meaning of statements. It is important to be aware of the way we talk for effective communication to take placeSmall talk is part of conversation and an effective wayto break the ice. An effective and engaging conversation is one that flows. There are techniques available to move a conversation along such as using repetition, asking for examples, asking for clarity and using summary questions.

Influencing others can assist in selling products and ideas and gaining help. We don’t have the power to control other people, but we can try to persuade them. One tool in doing this is by entering their world and looking at the position from another’s viewpoint.  Another tool is bridge building which is the process of enforcing similarity between people. Make the other person feel at ease by recognizing common interests and gaining their trust.

Although emotions can be powerful tools, people are not just made up of emotions. Some circumstances necessitate an application of the mind by using facts.

Some people fade into the background while others stand out. You have to be able to leave a lingering positive impression on the people that you meet. You want to make sure that you create a positive impact on other people.

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Understanding Effective Communication Strategies

Understanding Effective Communication Strategies

Every day we communicate with and to others. It does not matter if you are giving a speech in the boardroom, communicating with your partner, or the look that you give to your pet, it all means something. Understanding the various ways of communicating, will help you to make the most of each of them.

Communication affects these aspects of your life:

  • Relationships
  • Stress levels
  • Productivity
  • Satisfaction level of your life
  • Problem solving ability
  • Capability of achieving your goals

Common Communication Problems

  • Cultural Barriers
  • Language Barriers
  • Difference in Place and Time

Hearing and Listening

Hearing is easy, but listening is far more complex. Listening is the method of looking at the words and the other factors used around those words, such as body language and non-verbal communication. The skill is to interpret the entire message.

Appreciative Inquiry

Communication traditionally focuses on what is wrong and how we can fix it. Think about your last visit to the doctor, performance review, or your last disagreement with someone. Appreciative inquiry is the opposite of that. It focuses on the positive and on ways to improve. Many businesses have found it to be a refreshing and uplifting approach to problems, and revitalizing their employees.

Establishing Common Ground

Another powerful communication tool is finding common links that draw us together.  A stranger may turn out not to be a stranger to you. Someone that might have grown up in the same town that you did, or someone who enjoys a hobby as much as you do.  Whether it is a problem-solving session, a team meeting or a basic conversation, try to find a common ground whenever you are communicating. Positive connections will assist you in communicating better and building stronger relationships.

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Advance Your Company With The Correct Business Etiquette

Advance Your Company With The Correct Business Etiquette

Success in any business depends on relations, whether with customers, employees, investors, suppliers or investors. When you are thoughtful and courteous in working with others, you create productive, appealing, and lasting business contacts. It is essential to learn, not only the practical side of business, but also how to conduct yourself in the company of others. This is what business etiquette is.

Business Etiquette can help your company advance these areas:

  • Customer Care: The best way to show clients that their support is appreciated is to take care of them with consideration and respect. This will inspire a positive reaction and loyalty.
  • Branding: By being professional, you convey the message that your business is responsible and reliable. Everything you do reflects on your company and products. Personalized care is your edge against the competition.
  • Team Synergy: Etiquette establishes a good working relationship within a team, which contributes to better efficiency and productivity.
  • Employee Engagement: Good etiquette improves drive and assurance between team members and employees.

Networking

It is essential to make the most of the first meeting when it comes to networking.

  • Make an effective introduction
  • Memorize names.
  • Reduce nerves
  • Create a good impression
  • Use business cards effectively

The Meet and Greet

  • A handshake is a part of many social interactions. It’s a way to introduce one’s self, offer congratulations and even a way to conclude a business deal. A handshake is a gesture of goodwill.
  • The art of discussion is not only to say the right thing at the right time, but to leave unsaid the wrong thing at a tempting moment. It requires sensitivity at this stage of a relationship, the context of the conversation and the comfort level of the person you are talking to depend on it.

Business Email

Email is an effectual and convenient way to carry out business communications. While online mediums of communication have their own vocabulary, it’s best to remember to use business emails in the same format as any business letter.

Phone Etiquette

Develop an appropriate greeting, and be capable in dealing with cell phones and voicemail.

Written Letters

Even in written communication, fitting tone, format and content must be followed.  It shows professionalism, courtesy and procedure awareness. Casual business letters are a straightforward and shorter version of a formal letter. Conventional rules of spelling and grammar still applies, but with certain flexibilities.

Dress

An important element of business etiquette is appropriate presentation, not only how you wish to convey your appearance, but also the consideration you have for the persons in your company. Dress codes frequently depend on the business or company where you are employed, and also in the kind of occupation that you are in.

International Etiquette

Etiquette is greatly inclined by traditions and every nation or country has their own system for courteous behavior. When conducting business in a foreign country or dealing with international clients, it is paramount to be conscious of local etiquette procedures as good manners in one country may not be considered the same in another. Most businesses these days are operational with an international approach.

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The Benefits of Group Drumming Activities

The Benefits of Group Drumming Activities

Have you ever considered Group Drumming as a team building option for your team but you are unsure of the benefits of this activity? To help you make your decision, we have put together the following list of benefits of Drumming as a team building activity.

Group Drumming Includes Everybody

Group Drumming incorporates everybody regardless of gender, age, race or nationality. Participants do not need any special talents or abilities. Drumming is universal and transcends cultural and language barriers. It is interesting to not that most cultures have some form of drumming tradition.

Group Drumming Helps to Reduce Stress

Studies have shown that drumming activities produce feelings of well-being and create a sense of deep relaxation. Group Drumming helps to reduce stress in participants and is known to lower the blood pressures of the individual drummers.

Group Drumming Helps the Team Connect with Each Other

Group Drumming activities create a sense of community among the participants. It is a very successful team building tool that teaches groups to work together and encourage communication.

Group Drumming Improves Morale

Group Drumming improves morale and motivates participants. Employees that are motivated get along better and absenteeism decrease. Studies have shown that participants of drumming activities also undergo significant mood improvement

Group Drumming Encourages Creativity

The drumming participants are encouraged to stop rational thinking and start feeling the rhythm. Both left and right brain thinking is stimulated, promoting creative thinking.

Group Drumming Improves Communication

Drums were used as one of the earliest forms of communication over long distances. Group drumming activities improve group communication amongst the participants. During the activities the participants experience a sense of connectedness as they work towards a common purpose. Drumming highlights the importance of non-verbal communication and participants are also tested on their ability to follow instructions correctly.

Group Drumming is Fun

Drumming activities release endorphins in the brain, which is the cause of feelings of happiness and euphoria. Even the most reserved members of your team will not be able to resist joining in the fun of beating away on their drums. Drumming is a fun activity that brings the whole team together.

Group Drumming Encourages Cooperation

In Group Drumming, every member of the team is encouraged to participate. It is important that all the participants work together in harmony, making the role of each individual indispensable. Drumming creates a sense of connectedness among the team members.

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