Few things are more important for the efficiency, effectiveness and health of an organisation than harmonious relationships among colleagues and between superiors and subordinates.

A major building block of excellent relationships is sincere respect for others; and one of the most important ways in which you can show that respect is to make every effort to communicate clearly.

Why is clear communication so important?

Lynne Truss, author of Eats, Shoots and Leaves, an exceptionally well written and useful book on punctuation, says that writing correctly is the courteous thing to do. It's just polite, she says, to save your readers the trouble of having to do a lot of hard work that you should have done.

Kathy Kleidermacher, writing in Copywriter's Words & Phrases, says she doesn't want to have to "clean up after" people who haven't bothered to clean up their own documents.

What both ladies are saying is that the greater the effort you put into communicating clearly with someone, the more you are saying, in effect, to that person, "You are important enough for me to want to get my message across to you as clearly as possible, instead of expecting you to expend extra effort in trying to understand me."

Respect. Courtesy. Thoughtfulness. Regard for the other. These things enhance relationships.

This is true whatever the medium of communication: whether verbal, written or physical.

And it is as true in personal relationships as it is in the workplace.

Develop and nurture these attitudes and attributes; they make a difference. And if you live by them, so will you.

... And there's even more on this important subject on one of my blogs – click here. You'll also enjoy the other instructive articles on that page.

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