English: The Demon in your Office
How often have you have hesitated when talking to your co-workers, or your managers, or worse, with your clients, in English? Over the last few weeks, we at LearnEd have constantly been talking of how knowledge of English can give you an edge over others when it comes to gaining and nurturing employment. Conversely, not having an able hand at communicating in English can often put you out of sight with recruiters and bosses alike, and may even lead you to feel under-confident about your other skills.
With this post, we aim to delineate the areas at work wherein confident, correct usage of English is often expected, and will help you reach a desired outcome more easily. When working on improving your language ability and communication skills, keep these in mind, and they will act as your personal training guide!
Expression of Ideas: At any office, you will be expected to be an active part of brainstorming sessions, one-on-one discussions and even casual conversations about how to move your company, product or service forward in a pre-planned direction, both analytically and creatively. This requires you to have good ideas and questions, but that talent will lay in the back-burner, unless you know how to convey it. This is even more important when you are making presentations. Language ability will help you put forth your ideas in a clear and succinct manner. Good communication strategy will help you pick up on what is the kind of person that you are speaking to, and how to lay your points across in a way that it will make the most impact on that particular personality, whether they are your seniors, colleagues or juniors.
Telephonic Conversations: This one is a tricky spot. For a lot of us, not physically being in the same space as the person we are conversing with, in a language that we aren’t comfortable with, is a good thing. It helps that we can prepare in advance. I had an uncle who would even write down how to greet the person he was calling, on a sheet of paper before he actually called, to give him more clarity on his conversations. Phone calls can help you reduce the nervousness of face-to-face conversations that might lead to mistakes for you. However, the flip side is that phone calls also mean less of an emotional connection, hence you will need to employ just the right words and emotions to get your task done. Thus language ability and strategy can take you ahead by leaps and bounds in this case.
Feedback: At any level of work, you are going to need to give clear instructions, and receive them too. Only then can you carry out what is expected of you or expect someone else to carry out what you wish to be done. Over the course of time, your work will be measured not just in its outcome, but also in the way you record and talk about it. The outcome itself too, in fields such as marketing, sales, hospitality etc will depend on your communication. Performance reviews are often communication-based too. This is true for both Indian and international clients.
These are just the broad categories underneath which communication at your workplace can be categorised. If you felt the pinch while reading any or all of us, know that you are not alone. Know that you are not as badly off as you think, and know that you are already on a learning curve. Get to the top of that curve now, and contact LearnEd to combat all your communication fears, today!