Monday, April 4, 2011

The lost art of COMMUNICATION

I just saw this article on Communication and social media. I think it is really interesting how the avenues of human contact is changing and how the "basic" conversation "still works"

LOL and BRB might be key communication elements in a texting, emailing, social-media-obsessed world, but they don't make for high quality communication or conversation. Sometimes you might not even know what your communicating counterpart is even saying to you. With communication becoming more and more diluted by technology an essential element in building strong, mutually beneficial, and even profitable relationships.
"Conversations are the building blocks of relationships," Without it, we form relationships that are devoid of substance. Unfortunately, we live in a world where the modern MO seems to be less talking and more texting. People either think they don't have the time or don't think it's necessary to take the time to have real conversations with each other. But for anyone who wants to create truly beneficial relationships, you have to stop texting, walk away from the computer, and connect with someone one-on-one through a great conversation.
The goal of any conversation should be to build a mutually beneficial relationship with that other person! By having a conversation with someone, you're committing to connecting with him or her for the next 10, 15, 30 minutes or more. Follow that conversation to its conclusion, and you never know what you will find out. The point is you have to be willing to have it in the first place, and that is something that too few of us value these days.
Today, you can find out almost anything you'd ever want to know in seconds. You can rattle off a text faster than you can dial someone's number. You can send an email out to multiple contacts in a couple of minutes. But with this speed of communication,, you often sacrifice quality; and, ultimately, this sacrifice leaves you with paper-thin relationships.
Texting, IMing, and emailing provide great ways to communicate, but there is a one-sidedness to the kind of communication they allow. There is a delay in the actual exchange of ideas that doesn't exist when you are speaking with someone. With these methods, the chances are also higher that you will be misunderstood or you will misunderstand the other person because there's no way to capture tone and feeling in a way that ensures it won't be confused. To truly express yourself and allow others to express themselves, conversation provides the highest quality of communication.

It's an opportunity-making skill. Being a great conversationalist can lead to great opportunities, both in your professional and social lives. For example, to get your dream job, you'll have to back up your meticulously written resume with a great interview. The most comfortable interviews are those that feel like normal conversations--a give and take between two (or more) people who genuinely want to learn about one another. Once you get the job, your conversations with your new colleagues will help you gain their trust and build a rapport that helps you (and them) succeed.
In your social life, if you want to ask someone on a date or even just make a new friend, you're going to have to be able to talk to that person. These are all situations where technology is only going to get you so far. Life's opportunities are sealed with conversation, not texting or emailing. As it is impersonal. And if it is easier because some one is so shy, maybe a good life coach or therapist would be a better answer and "friending" people by a click of a button....
It's a great way to invest in others. The act of listening--the other half of a great conversation and I think this is what most of us lack--shows people you care. When you speak with someone and listen to what he or she has to say, you are showing that person you value him or her and the wonderful thing is that in the flow of a great conversation, he or she is giving that courtesy right back to you.
I truly believe in communication that is done by a personal touch. I like to listen to the voice and tone as the email does not give any clues of the person's state of mind or mood. Words are not just words, at least not in my book.

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