How to use and improve your abilities

Interpersonal skills form an integral part of your professional toolbox. From collaborating on a project with a colleague to liaising with an important external stakeholder, you need the confidence, empathy and communication skills to make the most of every interaction.

Strong interpersonal skills will help you gain allies and simultaneously demonstrate to your supervisor that you’re capable of bringing out the best in others. And that’s a key aspect of career advancement.

Follow these nine tips to improve your interpersonal skills in the workplace:

1. Cultivate a positive outlook. Teach yourself to be positive by reminding yourself every day of the good things about your life and your job. If you’re upset about a personal matter, set those feelings aside until after work. If you’re stressed about a work issue, look for the positive in the situation and try to build on that.

2. Control your emotions. Work isn’t the place to be overly emotional. Whether you’re extremely irritated, severely depressed or ecstatically happy, take a deep breath and tone your emotions down. Always express yourself in a calm, patient manner.

3. Acknowledge others’ expertise. One of the best ways to build trust at work is to let your co-workers know you appreciate their expertise. Ask for their help on projects and give credit where credit is due.

4. Show a real interest in your colleagues. You work side-by-side with your colleagues for eight hours every day; it’s only logical that you’ll learn something about their lives. Make a point of getting to know what’s important to your co-workers. It will help solidify your relationships with them.

5. Find one good trait in every co-worker. Not all of us like every single person we work with but you can’t let personal preference get in the way of peak performance. If a colleague’s personality clashes completely with your own, the best way to handle the situation is by finding at least one good trait in that person—preferably something professional.

6. Practice active listening. In the allBusiness article “Ten Ways to Improve Your Interpersonal Skills,” the editors advise practicing active listening. You can do this by maintaining eye contact with the speaker, nodding your head, and repeating what he or she says in your own words. The speaker will feel respected and you’re likely to be able to recall the conversation more easily afterwards.

7. Be assertive. According to the HelpGuide.org article “Effective Communication: Improving Communication Skills in Your Work and Personal Relationships,” it’s important to be assertive. Be confident in your ability and opinions, and don’t be afraid to express your needs, as well as your limits.

8. Practice empathy. Gain a well-rounded view of things by putting yourself in other people’s shoes. This will help you develop empathy for others, which in turn goes a long way in finding solutions that work for all involved.

9. Maintain your relationships. Connect with college friends and former colleagues on social media or through email; try to set up face-to-face meetings now and then. This shows your connections that you still value the relationship—and that can go a long way in helping you advance your career.

Many people struggle with writing in English and it can seem like a real challenge to improve. Don’t worry, though. Here are some simple steps that you can take to improve your written English and impress people with your writing skills.

1. Expand your vocabulary

To express yourself clearly, you need a good active vocabulary. That’s not just being able to recognise lots of words – it means actually being able to use them correctly. Do this by learning new words with example sentences, not just word lists.

Tip: When you learn a new word, try learn all the forms of that word and the prepositions that are usually used with it. (For example, rather than just the word ‘depend’, make a note of: to depend on, to be dependent on, a dependant.)

2. Master English spelling

You must know how to spell those words correctly. Incorrect spelling changes the meaning of your sentence. For example: ‘bare’ and ‘bear’ sound the same but ‘bare’ means naked and ‘bear’ is a large animal. Additionally, incorrect spelling makes it difficult for the reader to understand what you’ve written.

Tip: Practice your spelling using flash cards and test yourself whenever you have some spare time.

3. Read regularly

People often say that we learn to write best by reading. Reading in English is useful in many ways. It is a great way to get an idea of the different styles of writing and see how to use words appropriately.

Tip: Choose books or articles with topics that interest you. Learning shouldn’t be boring. Read each text several times to make sure you understand how to use new words and expressions in the text.

4. Improve your grammar

Grammar is very important because it improves the quality of your writing. Always use the appropriate tense and remember to use punctuation. Punctuation is a great way to make your writing clear and fluent.

Tip: Always proof-read your writing twice. The first time, look for general mistakes and the second time look for mistakes with the particular grammar point your are studying at the moment.

5. Just do it!

Writing can be daunting. However, the best way to improve is get a pen and paper or sit in front of your computer and actually write. Be prepared to write several versions of each text because even for professional writers, the first draft is never perfect. Remember, practice makes perfect, so now is the best time to sit down and get started with our free English quizzes!

Believe it or not, writing, apart from the spoken word, is one of the world’s oldest forms of communication that still exists today. Think about it; while we may no longer invest time in sending letters to one another, our daily communication is always accompanied by some form of writing, be it in text messages, daily emails, or posts you make on your social media accounts.

In the university space, academic writing is a whole other ball game and often takes on a very different form to other types of writing out there, but the simple fact is that you cannot achieve a high level of college writing if you don’t know how to improve your basic writing skills!

One of the earliest known examples of writing dates back to 3500-3000 BCE, to the ancient Sumerians of Mesopotamia. This form of writing is known now as “Cuneiform”, which involved the engraving of various pictorial figures into stone as a means by which to communicate with others, record numbers, among other functions.

Even if your chosen career path doesn’t necessarily involve writing as a form of income, being able to communicate effectively is incredibly important to ensure success in today’s competitive international job market. Think about email-writing; it hardly looks professional if you send an email to your boss or colleague that isn’t well thought-out and contains many errors.
Here are 6 simple tips to improve your writing skills!

1. Make Writing a Daily Exercise

Practice really does make perfect! If you compare writing to a skill like cooking, or even playing a sport, you cannot expect to improve if you don’t practice – it’s like expecting to become a pro football player after one practice with your team.

Try to set yourself daily writing exercises – they need not be long-winded and time-consuming, even just committing yourself to writing a paragraph a day is enough! You can even partner up with someone else who also wants to improve their writing skills and read each other’s paragraphs to see where changes need to be made.

2. Read, Read, and Read Some More!

We learn best by example, and gaining writing skills is no exception to this rule. When we read, we learn how other people write to convey their messages in the best way possible, and we start to adapt our writing styles to those that we resonate most with.

Incorporate daily reading into your writing exercises; maybe even make your practice paragraph a review or summary of what you read that day, taking different elements of the author’s writing style to develop your own voice.

3. Be Succinct

Try not to use any complicated, long words in your writing. They often confuse the reader and make them disinterested in what you have to say. Keep your sentences short. Never over-use filler words like “very”, “really”, “just”, etc.

They tend to make sentences long and unnecessarily take up your reader’s cognitive space.

4. Never Underestimate the Importance of a Thorough Editing Session

Editing is a part of the writing process that is completely underrated and that is frequently overlooked. Errors in your writing are likely to take attention away from the message you are trying to convey and decrease your reader’s trust in your viability as a writer.

The human brain often overlooks certain small errors during the proofreading process, so using an online editing tool, like Grammarly, comes highly recommended.

5. Develop a Clear Message

There is nothing more frustrating than a piece of writing that doesn’t get straight to the point. Think about what you want to say, what message you want your reader to take away with them, and make sure that that you make this message clear from the very beginning.

It is also important to think about your audience; what do they want to hear, and how would they like it to be conveyed? Do you need to take on a formal, or a more informal tone? Would using humour help develop your message, or should you get straight to the point in a more businesslike fashion?

These are important considerations that need to be taken into account before you even begin the writing process.

6. Sit Down and Write!

Sometimes the most difficult step in the writing process is the act of actually sitting down and getting the writing done. By this point, you should have a clear plan of what you want to say, and a general idea of how you want to say it.

It may seem daunting, but remember that the hard work is now done! All you need to do is convince yourself that you are capable (which you are), sit down in front of your n0tebook or computer, and execute your communication!

Soft skills are non-technical skills that relate to how you work. They include how you interact with colleagues, how you solve problems, and how you manage your work.

Learn what soft skills are, types and examples of soft skills, and ways to develop soft skills.

What Are Soft Skills?

Soft skills relate to how you work. Soft skills include interpersonal (people) skills, communication skills, listening skills, time management, and empathy, among others. They are among the top skills employers seek in the candidates they hire, because soft skills are important for just about every job.

Hiring managers typically look for job candidates with soft skills because they make someone more successful in the workplace. Someone can be excellent with technical, job-specific skills, but if they can’t manage their time or work within a team, they may not be successful in the workplace.

  • Alternate names: Interpersonal skills, essential skills, noncognitive skills

How Soft Skills Work

Soft skills are also important to the success of most employers. After all, nearly every job requires employees to engage with others in some way.

Another reason hiring managers and employers look for applicants with soft skills is that soft skills are transferable skills that can be used regardless of the person’s job. This makes job candidates with soft skills very adaptable and flexible employees.

Soft skills are particularly important in customer-based jobs. These employees are in direct contact with customers. It takes several soft skills to be able to listen to a customer and provide that customer with helpful and polite service.

Even if you're not in a client-facing role, you need to be able to get along with coworkers, managers, vendors, and other people you interact with at work.

Types of Soft Skills

Soft skills include the personal attributes, personality traits, and communication abilities needed for success on the job. Soft skills characterize how a person interacts in his or her relationships with others.

Soft skills include:

More Soft Skills: List of the top soft skills employers value.

How to Get Soft Skills

Unlike hard skills that are learned, soft skills are similar to emotions or insights that allow people to “read” others. These are much harder to learn, at least in a traditional classroom. They are also much harder to measure and evaluate.

That said, some job training programs do cover soft skills. They may discuss soft skills so job seekers know what they are and the importance of highlighting them on their resume. There are also free online courses that can help you improve your soft skills.

If you've been working for a while, chances are you've already developed some soft skills. For example, if you've worked in retail, you've worked in a team environment. If you've helped unhappy customers find a resolution, you've used conflict resolution and problem-solving skills.

If you're new to work, think of other activities you've done, either through school or on a volunteer basis. Chances are you've had to communicate, adapt to changes, and solve problems.

You can also reflect on soft skills you need to develop. For example, instead of just discussing problems with your manager, suggest solutions to those problems. If you see a colleague struggling, offer to pitch in. If there's a process that could improve your workplace, suggest it.

Employers typically don't directly ask if you have soft skills. Instead, they present situations and ask what you would do to assess whether you have soft skills.

How to Highlight Your Soft Skills

When you're applying for a new job, highlight your soft skills as well as your job-specific ones. First, make a list of the soft skills you have that are relevant to the job you want. Compare your list of soft skills with the job listing.

Include some of these soft skills in your resume. You can add them to a skills section.

You can also mention these soft skills in your cover letter. Pick one or two soft skills you have that appear to be the most important for the job you’d like. In your cover letter, provide evidence that shows you have those particular skills.

Finally, you can highlight these soft skills in your interviews. You can demonstrate your soft skills during the interview by being friendly and approachable. If you pay close attention while the interviewer is talking, you will show your listening skills.

How to use and improve your abilities

If English isn’t your first language, you might find you need to take an English language proficiency exam such as the IELTS or the TOEFL as part of your application to study abroad. These tests may seem straightforward, but learning to write and speak in a sophisticated and eloquent manner in a new language doesn’t come easily. In order to succeed, you’ll need to put a lot of continuous effort into learning a new language, but there are some quick fixes that can help to boost your test performance at short notice.

If the exam is just a few weeks away, here are some ways to quickly improve your English language skills.

Watch movies in English

Watching series on Netflix might not exactly improve your debating skills or formal register, but it helps you to understand the language better, get used to colloquial, conversational forms of English and implicitly get a feeling for the language. Also, you could try to pick out words that sound highly informal and look up their more scholarly counterparts. Of course, there is also a plethora of documentaries (try anything by David Attenborough to start you off) to be found online as well. Being exposed to a language for the length of a movie might help you to actually start thinking in English.

Immerse yourself in English language news

Try to sample a broad range of English language newspapers, including broadsheets as well as magazines and tabloids. As well as helping you keep up to date with current affairs, this range of news sources will also expand your vocabulary. Another advantage is that you will also become more comfortable with how words are spelt and the contexts in which they are used.

Start a vocabulary book of useful words

Either in a notebook or on your computer, start making a list of useful words and phrases. Every time you hear or see a word you’re not familiar with, note it down. Don’t only focus on the word itself, but search for synonyms and phrases in which it’s used. After all, you might understand what words such as “precedence” or “tantalizing” mean, but do you know how to use them accurately?

Have conversations in English

As helpful as listening and reading tasks may be, you also need to use English interactively and practice your own speaking skills. If you’re lucky, you’ll be friends with a few native speakers who can help you out, but if not then try to meet up with someone else studying English. Another option is to talk to yourself in the mirror or record yourself. Listening to the sound of your own voice might be a little bit awkward at first, but you will be able to hear mistakes of which you weren’t previously aware.

Practice, practice, practice

Let’s face it, academic phrases won’t just fall from heaven and straight into your brain. Even if your English is already quite good, don’t be complacent and underestimate stressful factors such as the time pressure in an exam. You still have to practice, no matter how much time you have left before your big day. Try coming up with a word of the day, and then try to employ it as often as possible. If you do this, don’t waste time on extremely specific words you will never actually use. Instead, focus on conversational English which is likely to be relevant in the exam.

Curiosity doesn’t always kill the cat

In order to improve rapidly, you should ask a lot of questions and resolve them. Don’t just read phrases. Ask why they are used in a particular way, whether other constructions are possible as well and don’t trust everything you read online. Of course, it is tempting to be content with the first answer that pops up on Google, but you’ll find more rewards if you show a bit of curiosity.

Don’t forget to have fun while you learn

If studying the English language only feels like a burden, it will seem tedious and you won’t perform as well. This is why it’s important to stay motivated and enjoy the experience of learning a new language. Find ways to add entertainment into your studies, such as playing word games with friends that will boost your critical thinking skills.

Obviously, learning a new language is a long-term project and you can’t start from zero and write an academic paper a week later. But, when building on a decent foundation, you can achieve great results quickly if you devote yourself intensely. Especially for exams like the IELTS, you should really know what questions will be asked, what the formats look like and how to deal with the respective tasks. Try to stay focused and improve certain parts, rather than frantically trying to catch up with everything at once.

Laura Kabelka works in Communication and Marketing at StudentJob AT.

This article was originally published in January 2018 . It was last updated in April 2022

How to use and improve your abilities

Everyone has natural abilities in certain areas. You develop your skills through training and experience that improve your ability to do tasks. Being able to identify and describe your skills allows you to answer key questions at job interviews such as:

  • What can you do for my organization?
  • What problems can you solve?

In the workplace, there are two kinds of skills:

  • Technical skills
  • Soft skills.

Both types of skills are essential for success.

Technical skills

Your ability to do specific work well like cooking, computer programming or teaching, requires technical skills. They relate to a particular occupation. You may have learned technical skills from past work experience, school or training. You can improve your skills with practice, education and training. These skills are often included in job listings to describe the primary responsibilities of a position. Examples are:

  • Build a cabinet
  • Operate equipment
  • Write computer code
  • Investigate a scientific question
  • Sell products to customers
  • Write an article

Soft skills

Your ability to work well with others and help your organization be more productive requires soft skills. These skills are so valuable that soft skills are often the reason employers decide whether to hire or promote an employee. Some soft skills can be taught in school. But most soft skills you learn in everyday life and can improve at any time if you focus on them.

  • Participate as a team member
  • Motivate yourself to reach goals
  • Communicate well
  • Think critically
  • Learn quickly
  • Think positively
  • Be on time

Measuring Skills

It is often easier to determine a person’s level of achievement of technical skills than it is to determine a person’s mastery of soft skills. For example, it is easy to determine if a cabinet is square and level because that is objective information; but harder to know whether a person is truly a good communicator, because judging communication skills can be subjective.

Повысьте свой уровень владения английским языком. Write and speak more professionally in English to increase your business success.

How to use and improve your abilities

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Специализация: общие сведения

Опыт не требуется.

Опыт не требуется.

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О специализации

Пройти курсы

Специализация Coursera — это серия курсов, помогающих в совершенстве овладеть определенным навыком. Можно сразу записаться на специализацию или просмотреть курсы, из которых она состоит и выбрать тот, с которого вы хотите начать. Подписываясь на курс, который входит в специализацию, вы автоматически подписываетесь на всю специализацию. Можно завершить всего один курс, а потом сделать паузу в обучении или в любой момент отменить подписку. Отслеживайте свои курсы и прогресс на панели управления учащегося.

Практический проект

В каждой специализации есть практический проект, который нужно успешно выполнить, чтобы завершить специализацию и получить сертификат. Если для практического проекта в специализации предусмотрен отдельный курс, прежде чем начать его, необходимо завершить все остальные курсы.

Получите сертификат

Когда вы пройдете все курсы и завершите практический проект, вы получите сертификат, которым можно поделиться с потенциальными работодателями и коллегами.

How to use and improve your abilities

Специализация включает несколько курсов: 4

Курс 1

Write Professional Emails in English

This is a course to help you write effective business emails in English. This course is unique because each module will provide tips on writing more professional emails as well as lessons to improve your overall English writing skills. Therefore, you will improve your grammar and vocabulary skills for email writing and also improve your cross cultural knowledge to make you more powerful and successful in your business communication. You will look at different email formats to analyze tone, formality levels, and various organizational styles. You will be able to improve your emails of introduction, announcements, requests and emails that apologize or revise a request. In this course you will write and revise 4–5 emails, complete several comprehension quizzes and review the emails of other participants.

By the end of this course, you will be able to • Improve your overall written English skills • See differences and similarities among the different email formats • Write more effective subject lines and email text • Apply various key language to different types of emails • Correct common errors such as punctuation and capitalization • Study tone and level of formality in emails • Understand how culture affects what is appropriate in a business emails • Write powerful business emails for professional needs

Курс 2

Speak English Professionally: In Person, Online & On the Phone

Half Faded Star

Do you want to speak better English? This course will help you reach that goal. Speak English Professionally: In person, Online and On the Phone will boost your English speaking skills. In this 5 week course, you will learn how to identify and make a strong personal introduction. You will develop and demonstrate the speaking skills for group discussions: how to agree or disagree, how to clarify, restate and summarize. You will review and practice how to give information and respond to requests on the phone. You will study and role play effective interviewing. You will prepare and give a sales “pitch”, introducing a product or service. Throughout the course, you will adjust how you speak English and you will become more fluent and accurate when you speak. You will demonstrate culturally appropriate body language and tone. As you work through the course, you will complete self- and peer-evaluations. Through a combination of lectures, comprehension and vocabulary quizzes, practice and performance, you’ll gain the skills and confidence to communicate well in English, anywhere in the world.

By the end of this course you will: • Change how you speak English • Improve your pronunciation and fluency • Increase your English vocabulary • Identify how culture influences your speech • Use culture to help you speak correctly • Demonstrate the best body language for different cultural settings • Know statements, questions and responses for different settings and situations

Курс 3

Build Your Professional ePortfolio in English

Half Faded Star

Roughly half of the world’s population is already online and so setting yourself apart from the crowd is more important than ever before. One of the best ways to do that is by creating your own ePortfolio. An ePortfolio is a site that showcases or shows your background, your resume, and samples of your work. In this course, you will learn step by step how to build the site and you’ll learn the grammar, vocabulary and writing skills needed to create it. You will learn how to apply information from your ePortfolio to other online tools like LinkedIn, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube in order to network with others so that you get a job or connect with other professionals. For each step in that process, you will listen to lectures, take comprehension quizzes, and learn how to use English appropriately to each part of your site. You will also complete self and peer assessments and gain the needed skills to make your ePortfolio a reality and establish yourself online.

By the end of this course, you will be able to • Write a proper headline or title for your ePortfolio • Describe your work in 1 sentence and in longer forms • Identify how to use hashtags effectively • Write an effective summary about yourself and your work • Apply appropriate vocabulary to write your education and professional experience for your resume • Understand how to write a tweet to get a job • Discover how to write specific comments and network work with others • Apply what you have on your portfolio to other tools like Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn or YouTube.

Be it in a personal or a professional context, you can never deny the significance and the necessity of good decision making.

Critical thinking helps us to find any flaw, if it exists, in our decision making process and helps us to reach a better outcome by eliminating those flaws. In short, no matter what you are doing, you need to have that set of decision making skills; and for that, you need to be able to think critically and act quickly.

If you are still in doubt about your critical thinking ability or wondering what you should do in order to improve critical thinking, here is a list of steps that you should follow:

1. Know exactly what you want

Knowing exactly what you want is the first step of critical thinking.

We have to think critically to solve problems so that they meets their objectives. Every decision we make has an objective or purpose attached to it and identifying exactly what that is, what we actually want out of it, gives us a starting point to work with.

So ask yourself: What do I want? What do I expect to get out of this? Until you know the answer to these questions you’re not going to know what the right decision is.

2. Deal with your biases

We often think from only our own perspective to deal with problems. However, it helps with critical thinking and decision making if you try thinking from someone else’s point of view.

Furthermore, it gives you a clearer picture of the overall situation. Let’s say you’re looking to solve a problem at work. Think of how your best friend might approach it, or how your partner or a sibling might. Now think of how your boss might approach it.

By allowing yourself to consider different perspectives you might find yourself hitting upon solutions you hadn’t previously considered.

3. Consider the consequences of your options

Every option we choose has consequences for ourselves, or maybe others involved in the problem.

You need to weigh up the possible consequences which may arise from each of your options and go for the one that benefits you most whilst limiting the negative effects on others involved.

A good way to do this is by writing a list of pros and cons. By asking yourself to think of every possible positive outcome alongside every possible negative outcome, you can make a much more informed decison.

How to use and improve your abilities

4. Do your research

I’m sure you’ve heard that knowledge is power. However, many of us tend to rely a lot on what we already know and are reluctant to let go of our own beliefs.

Critical thinking requires you to let go of your beliefs sometimes to solve problems. Reluctance to learn, research or acquire new beliefs will only hold you back and certainly won’t help you with critical thinking.

By taking time to do your research and focus on learning you’ll find that over time you will evolve and adapt to overcome new situations and improve your critical thinking.

5. Accept the fact that you’re not always right

This one can be harder than it sounds.

It’s okay to make mistakes and no matter who we are, we all make them.

However, most of us don’t accept this fact which holds us back from thinking critically. If you are doing something wrong and repeatedly keep doing it because you have already assumed that you can never go wrong, then this needs to change for your own good.

Always double check solutions to problems, consider new options and view your mistakes as an opportunity to learn.

5. Break it down

Being able to see the big picture is great but it’s even better if you can break things down into smaller sections.

The reason being that smaller sections are easier to mentally digest and work with.

Working with numerous small things is an easier task than trying to solve the bigger picture which can become too much to handle.

So try and think about it in terms of steps: what is the first thing I need to do? Make a list and try and put it in terms of priority, or chronology. By taking a big problem and breaking it into several pieces you allow yourself to start looking at the solutions, rather than spending half your time being overwhelmed by the problem.

6. Don’t overcomplicate things

Overcomplicating things is something a lot of us have in common. It’s a necessity to think things through but it only makes things difficult if you begin overthinking. You have to discover the fine line between positive thinking and overthinking.

There are a number of occasions where simplicity gets the job done.

If you are still in doubt about your critical thinking ability, just know that you are not alone.

Critical thinking is not something that comes easy. It sometimes needs you to let go of what you believe and work with new ideas. It can be challenging at times but if you do it right, it will be all worth it!

Boost your critical thinking skills

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Learning a variety of tricks to improve writing skills isn’t as difficult as you may think. We’ve put together a list of steps to help you make dramatic improvements to the quality of your writing in short order.

Becoming a better writer takes practice, and you’re already practicing. No, seriously—you write a lot. Even if you don’t think of yourself as a writer, you put thoughts into text more often than you realize. At the very least, you write emails—a lot of emails—post on social media, make updates to your résumé and LinkedIn profile, and message your friends. If your job requires it, you also create things like reports, presentations, newsletters . . . it’s a long list.

So, you’re already writing. Now, to improve writing is just a matter of becoming conscious of the things you can do to give your text more structure and make your copy crisp and readable with a conversational style.

Give Your Writing Structure

It’s fine to rattle off a stream of consciousness when you’re writing in your journal, but if you actually want to communicate with others you’ll need to bring some order to those rambling thoughts. Here are some tips.

1 Make sure you’re clear on the concepts you’re writing about.

Albert Einstein said, “If you can’t explain it to a six-year-old, you don’t understand it yourself.” Before you start writing, take a moment to mentally explain the concept to the six-year-old who lives inside your head. (We all have one, don’t we?) If your writing goal is to achieve a specific result, ask yourself what that result should be. Before you dive into writing, have a clear purpose. Then stick to it.

2 If the message is complex, outline it.

It doesn’t take much thought-organizing to compose the average text message, but if you’re writing something more complex, with multiple angles, questions, or requests, get all that stuff sorted before you sit down to write. Making an outline, or even just some quick notes about the topics you want to cover, can save you time answering clarifying questions later. And speaking of questions . . .

3 Anticipate your readers’ questions.

Improving writing involves putting yourself in your readers’ shoes. Do they have enough context to understand what you’ve written for them? If not, fill in the blanks. But . . .

4 Don’t over-explain everything.

If you’ve taken the time to organize your thoughts in advance, you should be able to keep things simple. The idea is to give readers just enough to understand what you’re communicating without overwhelming them with trivial details. If you find yourself getting in the weeds with more details than you need, look at each piece of information and ask whether it’s essential to help your reader understand your message. If not, get rid of it.

How to use and improve your abilities

Strong verbal communication skills are important for everyone to master. They are extremely valuable in both your personal and professional life. When speaking clearly, confidently, and with poise, you are much more likely to command the respect of others and build rapport. This is particularly important in business interactions.

The following 7 tips will help you improve your verbal communication skills, whether in person or over the phone so that you can better connect with your audience, earn respect, and build the relationships necessary for successful business interactions:

1. Think before you speak

By organizing your thoughts in advance, you can eliminate many of the awkward pauses that occur when speaking. It will also help you relay your information more concisely. While writing down your thoughts is not always possible in impromptu discussions, it is still effective to take a minute to organize your thoughts in your mind before you begin to speak.

2. Be clear and concise

The most effective way to get your point across is to make it in a clear and concise manner. Avoid using complex, convoluted sentences, and try to state your argument in direct language. Before speaking, ask yourself, “What is the clearest way I can make my point?”

3. Speak with confidence

Speaking in a confident manner will help you build trust and command the respect of your audience. There are several factors which can impact your ability to speak confidently, including your command of the subject matter, your word choice, the tone of your voice, your body language, and your ability to make direct eye contact with your audience.

4. Vary your vocal tone

Speaking in a monotone voice is a surefire way to bore your audience and show you’re disengaged. Instead, use voice inflection to add emphasis to important points, and vary the pitch of your voice to express emotion. This will help keep your audience engaged in your message.

5. Be an active listener

Being a good listener is as important as being a good speaker, and it will improve the quality of your verbal interactions. Keep the 5 stages of active listening in mind:

  1. Receiving
  2. Understanding
  3. Remembering
  4. Evaluating
  5. Responding

It shows the people you are speaking with that you genuinely care about their ideas, and it helps ensure you understand their needs. Summarize what you’ve heard and ask further questions. This will enable you to build trust and rapport much quicker.

6. Be aware of non-verbal communication cues

Your body language significantly impacts the way others interpret what you say and your attitude about the conversation. Pay attention to the gestures you make, your facial expressions, and your body language to ensure they align with the message you are trying to get across.

It’s equally as important to be able to read the body language of the people you’re speaking to. Keep eye contact ( while still blinking) while communicating to be able to pick up on any hesitations or lack of engagment

7. Think about the perspective of your audience

Just because you have a strong command of a topic doesn’t mean the people you are speaking to have the same knowledge as you. Try to think about how someone else will understand what you are trying to communicate, particularly if they lack the technical knowledge about a subject that you possess. The best advice is to simplify your pitch.

Call Recording Services to Help Improve your Employees’ Verbal Communication Skills

CallRail’s call recording can be a valuable training tool to help you improve the way your employees speak with customers over the phone. You can listen back to conversations to learn from what your employees are doing well and identify areas for improvement. Over time, this can help you implement training that will improve the verbal communication skills of your employees, which will ultimately lead to greater success for your business.