Communication In The Workplace: Why It Matters
One thing that I keep an eye out for candidates during interviews is their ability to carry themselves well. For me, as the first line interviewer, “soft” skills, especially in communication, is just as important as the technical knowledge of the trade, mainly because I perceive it as an essential skill that is not only important for work, but also for collaboration and harmony at the workplace. Besides, scientific research shows that companies increase their productivity and retention levels when bringing a focus to hiring, training and developing employees with their soft skills.
A common misconception about communication is that for a person to be an effective communicator, you must have an overpowering voice, with the loudest opinion, and a sense of command that towers over everyone. Well…not necessarily.
The art and science of communication is not purely speaking. Whilst it is important to be confident in presenting yourself and be clear in the idea or message that you want to relay, there are other equally important aspects that make one a great communicator, such as, empathetic and attentive listening, ethical and sound writing, and even mindful non-verbal cues (body language, facial cues, etc.).
As a leader, we must keep an eye out for these soft skills from the beginning. For example, you might need an excellent web developer, but if they can’t collaborate and empathise with other members, then they’re probably not the perfect fit for your team.
It is challenging enough to showcase your communication skills face-to-face, even more so in virtual work environments where there are limited opportunities to hone your interpersonal craft, nowadays. Here at SUMO, we make a concerted effort to conduct soft skills training that will not only help our team to become more holistic professionals but also be better people altogether.
Finding the balance between talent and soft skills requires a lot of time, patience, and gut instinct, but it is an integral part to the long-term success of the business.