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Communication Skills
The Process
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Communication: process of sending and
receiving messages between people
Verbal communication: sending messages
w/ words
Nonverbal communication: sending
messages w/o words through use of facial
expressions and gestures
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Communication is a two-way street
Messages aren’t transmitted or interpreted
as intended and confusion results
Making an effort to improve
communication skills can help you avoid
misunderstandings
Question:
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Describe a time when a failure to
communicate appropriately resulted in a
misunderstanding, conflict, etc.
Barriers to Communication
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Unclear messages
Misunderstandings
Poor listening skills
Language
Culture
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Name other barriers to communication.
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The Messages You Send
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To express yourself clearly, you need to be
aware of what you say and how you say it
“I” Messages
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Say how you feel and what you think
rather than criticizing someone else
Three parts:
“I feel…” (name an emotion)
“when you…”(what behavior bothers you)
“because…” (explain why it bothers you)
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Less likely to cause negative feelings
Keep conversation reasonable
Enable both people to stay focused on the
underlying problem and to solve it together
“You” messages can result in
defensiveness and lead to an argument.
Question
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With a partner, come up with a situation
that could cause an argument between
teens.
Write an angry message about the
situation and then translate the statement
into an “I” message.
Using the Right Tone
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Send messages with tone of voice
Be aware of how your words sound
Sympathy—use gentle tone
Help—polite
Body Language
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Body language—person’s posture, facial
expressions, gestures, and way of moving
Affects how others see you and how they
react to verbal message
Eye contact—direct visual contact w/
another person’s eyes
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Interest, confidence, friendliness, sincere
Managing Image Portrayed
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Controlling body language
Attending to your appearance
Good grooming
Avoiding Mixed Messages
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Mixed message—when your words and
body language don’t communicate the
same thing
Cause confusion
People won’t know whether to believe
what you say or what they see
Make sure your body language matching
your words
Question:
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Why might the nonverbal message be
stronger than the verbal one when a
message is mixed?
How can people become more conscious
of what their nonverbal messages
communicate?
Choosing Time and Place
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Be sure the other person is willing and
able to listen
Avoid times when emotions will hinder the
message…consider listener’s emotions
too
Make sure the other person isn’t distracted
Communication Styles
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Assertive—you express your ideas and
opinions firmly and with confidence
Aggressive—overly forceful and pushy
Passive—keep opinions to themselves
and give in to influence of others
Active Listening
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Hearing—receiving sound waves
Active listening—concentrating on what is
said so that you understand an remember
the message
Helps strengthen relationship b/c
promotes real understanding
Techniques for Active Listening
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Keep an open mind
Eliminate distractions
Listen with a purpose
Make eye contact
Focus your attention
Control negative emotions
Don’t cut the speaker off
Feedback
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Feedback—when a listener lets a speaker
know that he or she is trying to understand
the message being delivered.
Interject when speaker pauses
Ask questions
Restate
Show empathy when person is upset
Dealing with Criticism
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Remember, criticism is often well meant
Keep an open mind
Consider comments that seem intended to
help you
Criticism that is spiteful or inaccurate:
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Ignore
Don’t dwell on personal attacks
Communicating by Phone
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Have to make more effort to express self
more clearly
Find convenient time
Find convenient place
Avoid disturbing others
Leave clear messages
Communicating in Writing
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Good writing and reading skills help you
communicate with friends and family
Essential for workplace
Organize thoughts before you start
Pay attention to the tone you use
Keep it simple
Check that you have made all your points
Proofread
Assignment
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Choose a particular communication skill
and write a paragraph explaining it.
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Be prepared to share with class.