You just cannot exist without great communication. Regardless of how advanced your business is, how much excellent technology you implement, how great your product is, communication is what gets things done. Whether in business or personal matters, if you are not communicating effectively, there are going to be major roadblocks that hinder your progress and slow you down unnecessarily. So if you are aiming to improve any single aspect of your life, let it be how you communicate. The best type of leadership occurs through effective communication, because in order to make your points clear, and in order to inspire and guide others in a productive manner, you have to be able to communicate effectively. Here are my tips on communication, and why it is such an essential skill to running a business, and guiding a team in any industry.

Authenticity: Authenticity builds respect, and if you can follow up what you do with what you say, you will be building trust. When your actions follow your words, you set an example of leadership on your behavior alone. There is no better way to have solid reputation that represents who you are than by being authentic.

Simplify: A great leader can take an elaborate situation and break it down plainly, quickly, and easily for their employees, and this is essential when handling complicated scenarios. Complex ideas can be simplified and unnecessarily technical business jargon can be reduced to plain language; a leader who can zero-in to where their employees need clear communication the most will have the greatest results in procuring the best possible outcomes.

Interact: Be a physical, human presence in the work environment. Technology allows us to communicate without being/ having a physical presence, but communication gets lost when overdone. Hiding behind a computer or other piece of technology will not give you or your employees that personal connection that inspires connection. It’s not about being overly warm and cozy; it’s about connecting over the need to accomplish a task as a team.

Listen Well: Listening is about hearing what the other person is saying, not just with their words, but their intonation, their gestures, their eyes, and their attitude. Pay attention and ask appropriate questions. What are they really trying to convey with all of these different aspects of their verbal and nonverbal cues? Of course you want to be heard, acknowledged, and respected, but others demand and deserve the same. Communication goes both ways, and truly listening to what is going on both sides will enhance your ability to read between the lines.

Communication is a necessity for any relationship, and in the business sphere, it’s a tremendous skill that divides mediocre leadership from excellent leadership. Communicate better for better results, and a more functional team.