How to Improve Your Communication Skills

Learn how to improve your communication skills and get more of what you want by following these steps.

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Up next in How to Improve Your Communication Skills (68 videos)

Whether you're dealing with friends, family, a lover, or co-workers, you'll benefit from the communication skills taught in this Howcast video series. Among the advice included: how to tell someone off; how to deliver an ultimatum; how to complain; how to solve creative differences; how to give a compliment; how to take criticism; how to apologize; how to read social cues; how to learn to say no; and much more.

 
 

You Will Need

  • Clear speaking
  • Key phrases
  • Vocal skills
  • Eye contact
  • Hand gestures
  • Listening skills
  • Large vocabulary
  • Open-ended questions
  • Empathy
  • Memory (optional)
  • Anger management (optional)

Steps

  1. Step 1

    Enunciate clearly

    Enunciate clearly and speak slowly enough to be understood. Get it right the first time.

  2. Step 2

    Listen actively

    Listen actively, reinforcing their message with statements such as, "Yes, I see." Restate their points with instant feedback like, "What I hear you saying is..." so they know they have been heard.

  3. Step 3

    Animate your conversations

    Animate your conversations by avoiding a monotone -- modulate your pitch. Deepen your voice by speaking from your diaphragm.

  4. Step 4

    Establish eye contact

    Establish eye contact, or you risk being perceived as insecure and incompetent. Use hand gestures to emphasize points.

  5. Remembering names is a sign of respect.

  6. Step 5

    Expand your vocabulary

    Study and use an ever-expanding vocabulary to gain attention and respect for what you have to say.

  7. Step 6

    Use open-ended questions

    Use open-ended questions starting with "what," "where," "why," and "when" to ensure a balanced give and take.

  8. Manage your anger or you will undermine trust.

  9. Step 7

    Show empathy

    Remain positive and show empathy. Refrain from making assumptions about others or weighing the conversation down with antagonism.

  10. Patients of doctors trained in communication are more likely to follow prescribed treatment.

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