Effective Communication Skills for Developers for a Good Work Environment
Do you feel that there is a lack of communication at your workplace?
If the answer is no, you may need to investigate further. According to a recent study conducted by the Queen’s University of Charlotte.
- Only approximately 27% of employees receive any form of communication training.
- Similarly, 27% are confident in their function as a communicator at work.
- Nearly 3 out of 4 employers consider teamwork and collaboration to be “very important.”
- However, 39% of the employees polled felt their company does not collaborate sufficiently.
Communication skills are just as vital as technical abilities. I’ll even go so far as to suggest that software team failures are more commonly caused by communication gaps and misinterpretations rather than by technical flaws.
Working in a team, I feel, is one of the most difficult aspects of being a software developer, and I believe that many of us can grow in this area.
You’re probably one of a group of people that work from home these days.
As there is a less face-to-face connection, it is even more important to ensure that you and your team have efficient and effective communication methods.
Especially when you are communicating virtually, a lot of other soft skills has to be taken into consideration.
- You will have to be Assertive:
Assertiveness can assist you in effectively expressing yourself and standing up for your opinions while also respecting the rights and beliefs of others. Being Assertive with your communication can also help you improve your self-esteem and get respect from others.
- Be Clear and Concise:
Communicating with the team virtually and putting forward all your concerns and your Inputs is never the less challenging experience when you are working on a critical task.
During such scenarios, your communication should be short, clear and concise to avoid confusion and communication gaps. You should just say enough, and what is necessary, else it would not be the mistake of the listeners to interpret your inputs according to their experiences.
- Build Relationships:
You don’t have to be strangers just because you’re working remotely!
Establishing social relationships that make everyone feel like they’re a part of something unique is one of the most difficult problems for virtual teams.
A close-knit team cares more about each other’s success, which fosters a sense of camaraderie that makes the team more effective.
Though the above mentioned three aspects are considered to be the most critical points to ponder in the Work From Home culture, there are ten other essential communication skills every employee and boss needs to hone.
Excellent education, emotional intelligence abilities, and experience can help you secure a job, but EQ is the most important factor that will determine your success and advancement within the company.
- Showing Respect
It’s critical to respect other people’s space and time, especially if you need to discuss a sensitive topic.
While we may not consider respect to be a communication skill, it is, because respect is based on how we speak and listen to others.
Avoid speaking down to others; this does not promote a positive work environment. Always respect the other person’s feelings, strengths, and viewpoint.
2. Active Listening
It’s mutual gameplay when it comes to communication. The receiver of the message must participate in the process or it to be effective.
So, let’s begin with the easy but frequently challenging art of listening.
It doesn’t matter if you have the best Bluetooth headsets if the ear on the other end isn’t involved.
Active listening entails attempting to comprehend what the other person is saying. Staying engaged with the speaker throughout the message they’re attempting to deliver is a big part of it.
Self-awareness is required to execute this properly. You must be thinking to yourself, “I’m listening to so and so.” I want to make certain that I fully comprehend them.
3. Understanding the Email Etiquette
In an email, email etiquette refers to the use of suitable language, standards, and decorum. Using proper email etiquette demonstrates to the email recipient that you respect your relationship with them, your professionalism, and your ability to represent the firm for which you work.
The average employee spends nearly a quarter of their workweek sifting through the hundreds of emails we all send and receive each day.
Despite our fixation on our reply buttons, career consultant Barbara Pachter claims that many professionals still don’t understand how to utilise email effectively.
Indeed, the sheer number of communications we read and write each day may make us more prone to embarrassing mistakes—mistakes that can have major professional ramifications.
Hence, communicating through Emails is just as crucial as your verbal communications.
4. Remaining Open-Minded
According to The People Development Magazine, being open-minded makes you more adaptive to a unique work environment and task, as well as other employees.
Employers frequently seek to hire someone that they can mould into the type of employee who would fit in nicely with their company’s culture.
Open-minded employees are more likely to cope with tasks and co-workers that are different from what they are used to. As workplaces become more diverse in the early twenty-first century, this is especially crucial.
Accepting people of many cultures, genders, races, ethnicities, and ages makes it easier for fostering a positive collaboration and compatibility between the Team
5. Showing Empathy
Empathy is the act of considering and comprehending another person’s point of view. When you show empathy, you picture what it would be like to be in their shoes and the emotions you could be experiencing.
If a co-worker has recently suffered a loss, for example, you may be saddened by their condition. You may not be experiencing the same amount of sadness as they are, but you may understand how they are feeling and respond in a way that is sympathetic to what they are going through.
On the job, empathy can demonstrate profound respect for co-workers and demonstrate that you care, rather than simply following rules and regulations.
Empathic leadership may make everyone feel like they’re part of a team, boosting productivity, morale, and loyalty. Empathy is a valuable leadership tool in the hands of a well-liked and respected executive.
6. Asking Open-Ended Questions
An open-ended question cannot be answered with a simple yes or no or a fixed answer. Consider starting a query with the words “why,” “how,” “when,” or “what.”
If someone can say yes or no to a question that starts with those questions, they probably didn’t understand it!
When a developer submits a pull request, the teammate must refrain from asking queries like “can you make this more efficient?” or “can you tweak this?”
When problems are asked why, how, when, or what, they are solved far more successfully. Make it a habit of asking such elaboratively answered questions to get the most out of the problem for an enhanced solution or understanding.
7. Giving Constructive Feedbacks
Giving feedback is essential for informing your staff about how they’re doing and what’s expected of them, as well as aiding their learning and development. This feedback must occur on a frequent, continuous basis, rather than only at performance reviews.
The finest form of constructive critique, in the end, focuses on behaviour or situations rather than persons and personalities. It’s delivered in a supportive and respectful tone and setting.
Constructive feedback enables employees to identify, interpret, and avoid mistakes while also motivating them to reach their full potential.
Finally, remember that we all thrive on positive reinforcement. Providing ongoing feedback to employees, whether good or negative, is one of the most significant and potent employee development tools at your disposal.
8. Displaying Positive Body Language
In the workplace, body language can convey a range of meanings. Both in private and in public, you communicate through your body language. You almost definitely use body language every time you have a conversation with a co-worker, attend a meeting, or introduce yourself to a customer.
You have someone’s entire attention if they make eye contact with you, nod as you speak, or lean toward you while you’re talking. Someone may be bored or preoccupied if they are leaning back in their chair, gazing away from you, or fumbling their fingers. If you need to measure how a person or a team responds to your ideas or proposals, observing and interpreting these messages might help.
Body language in the workplace has an impact on the entire team’s productivity and relationships. If you can properly interpret body language, you will improve your skills as a professional communicator.
As you seek to improve your understanding of body language in the workplace, it’s critical to recall some basic realities.
We’ve all heard the word ‘stress,’ and it’s become a trendy idea in recent years. Physical tension is caused by mental stress that goes unnoticed. The majority of people are unable to effectively manage or cope with their stress.
Doctors, scientists, and psychologists agree that a large majority of diseases have a psychosomatic cause; these diseases are triggered by tensions, stresses, or a bad attitude toward life, which affect the body and mind, eventually leading to a medical disorder.
Furthermore, a stressed mind loses ethical values such as humaneness, respect, compassion, and concern for others. As a result, stress is a very high-risk element that we deal with daily. It’s critical to comprehend the source of stress and discover efficient strategies for turning stress into eustress rather than anguish.
When we begin to live with a high degree of stress, it influences both our mental and physical health. We obstruct our ability to live a healthy lifestyle, and even a high degree of stress reduces our productivity.
The ultimate goal of our lives is to have a good mix of work, relationships, relaxation, and enjoyment. As a result, effective stress management is necessary to effectively regulate our stress levels when they arise, so that we can think clearly, execute our professional roles effectively, and live a healthy life.
10. Emotional Intelligence
EQ helps control stress and develop teamwork and cooperation since it aids in the acquisition of knowledge in relationships. Our ability to function in a team is influenced by our emotions; as a result, we require the ability to connect, integrate, and self-soothe in workplace interactions.
At work, EQ is most commonly manifested as:
- Not being able to hear severely critical remarks and blaming others on the team
- Communication can be passive, aggressive, or a combination of the two.
- Leaders who aren’t used to listening and who lose touch with their teams
- A vast range of viewpoints is either unwelcoming or undervalued.
As a result, businesses must seek out new personnel with higher EQ, as well as company leaders or managers that can act rapidly and intelligently to meet the needs of their employees.
It’s important to pay attention to the emotional requirements of employees at work. Employees who work for companies that invest in the notion of EQ are significantly more engaged and dedicated.
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Author: Sravani Kinjarapu