Here’s Your Sign! – Creating Clear Communication

While not everyone may be aware of the magic that is comedian Bill Engvall, one part of his act is dedicated to all those moments when someone feels the need to state the obvious. On the other side of the communication spectrum, is the moment when you realize you are the only one in the room who understands what you are saying and where you just went with the point.

Over at Essential Communications (unfortunately not a linkable blog), Tom Henschel describes a couple of examples where people in leadership positions try to process feedback that says, in essence “I am having trouble following your train of thought”.

Tom describes the use of “frameworks“, which is a sort of mental signpost you drop into place in order to ensure the listener can follow you. Besides ensuring that your listener stays engaged with you, it slows you down and forces you to think clearly about what comes next. For example, “Stick with me – this is a whole series of thoughts linked together.”

Staying on track is critical for anyone but even more so for the leader. As you present, ask yourself, “Does everyone here know where I am going?” and “What is my topic?”.