Effective Communication Skills are the Mark of an Achiever.
Have you ever blown a deal, a job interview, a promotion, or a relationship, because of your communication skills? Maybe you just couldn’t think of the right words to say. Has your tongue ever seemed disconnected from your brain? You can easily overcome anxiety, expand your abilities, and empower yourself for success by using these tips.

1. Stop talking and listen. Think of your conversation as a tennis match, with each person taking turns serving and receiving. If you are trying to sell something, communication skills are vital. Remember that if you are thinking about what you will say next, you will miss vital information that could help you close the sale.

2. Know what you want to say -- Get to the point quickly. Then the listener can remember what you said. If you think before you talk, you'll know what outcome you want from your conversation. Successful networking relies on good communication skills. It begins with knowing what you want to accomplish.

3. Ask questions -- To gain the most from any interaction, find out what your listener wants. Ask open-ended questions that cannot be answered with "yes" or "no." You'll be amazed at the valuable information you get. To make sure you glean as much as possible from each conversation, rephrase what the other individual says, asking a question to make sure you understand.

4. Screen out distraction -- Nothing you do will make others feel more important than giving them your full attention. If you are engaged in network marketing, this is just as important with someone you sponsor as with a prospect. Turn off electronic devices and ignore the telephone. Pay no attention to other conversations taking place in the same room. Focus on the person or persons in your conversation.

5. Notice the tone of voice you use -- Voice tone gives the listeners evidence of your emotions. Be genuinely excited if you want to win people over. Use a soft tone to hold attention. Guard against unwittingly revealing negative emotions such as impatience, anger or rejection by using a stern or harsh tone.

6. Handle disagreements with tact -- It is unrealistic to think that everyone will always go along with whatever you request. What do you do when someone disagrees? Tact begins with listening which is a key communication activity. Be sure you clearly understand the issue and ask questions. Stay calm and think of disagreement as a difference in opinion, not personal rejection. Everyone has a right to an opinion.

7. Be receptive to new ideas -- It is easy to miss vital input. Listen attentively, and consider how new ideas may apply to things you already know. Don't be afraid to yield control -- this can add to your knowledge, encourage you to study further, or even change your mind!

8. Take notes -- Always have something available on which to write a note or a reminder. When you first meet someone, take a moment and jot down key information about the person and the conversation. Spell their name phonetically so you will remember how to pronounce it. Also spell it correctly. A person’s name is very important to him so make every effort to pronounce it correctly. If you are uncertain, ask him or her to pronounce it for you. They generally appreciate you making the effort. Never laugh at a person’s name. I have seen that happen to the embarrassment of others in the conversation.

9. Respect the other person's point of view. -- Building relationships requires us to learn what we agree upon. Try to understand why people think the way they do and find where compromise is possible. No one is ALWAYS right or wrong. You can understand another point of view without agreeing with it if you try. Leave the door open to approach the topic another day rather than getting into an argument.

10. Eliminate audible pauses -- Verbal fluff ("ah," "er," "um") obscures your message and reduces your credibility. Think about what you want to say before you begin to speak so you won’t have to rely on verbal fluff to carry you through. If you hear yourself adding these distractions to your message, stop, think in silence, then talk.

Relationship building is a matter of intention, words and feelings. Effective communication skills will smooth the path ahead and hasten career advancement. Set yourself up for success.

Why not take a few minutes for a free, private, checkup on your communication skills at
http://www.goalminds.com/quiz/RateYou.htm

Author's Bio: 

Jo Condrill has impacted the lives of hundreds of thousands of people around the world as a leader in the Toastmasters International organization and through her live speeches, seminars, podcasts, and tele-seminars, audio programs and best-selling books like “101 Ways to Improve Your Communication Skills Instantly” and “Take Charge of Your Life: Dare to Pursue Your Dreams.” She received the “Ford Tribute to Business Women Leaders” and was featured as a “Wise Woman” in Real Simple magazine. Her company, GoalMinds, Inc., received an Export Achievement Certificate from the U.S. Department of Commerce, U.S. Commercial Service, for Accomplishments in the Global Marketplace. Call 1 800 775-9293 for a free recorded message.
The book “101 Ways to Improve Your Communication Skills Instantly” is available on Amazon.com http://snipurl.com/23ms58y and Kindle eBook http://snipurl.com/23ms5xy