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Effective Communication Skills

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Cynthia Sauer

on 8 September 2015

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Transcript of Effective Communication Skills

Four Types of listening
1. Inactive Listening
2. Selective listening
3. Active listening
4. Reflective listening
Inactive Listening
Simply hearing the words - there is no recognition of the speaker's message or intent
Selective Listening
Hearing only what you want to hear
Active Listening
making a conscious effort to hear and understand the speaker's entire message
reflective listening
an extension of active listening that includes clarification of the speaker's message with an end result of mutual understanding
of active
Listening with participants

1. validate participants
2. recognize deficits in communication
3. different levels of communication
different people have different communication skills
good communication takes practice
better communication is a skill, not something that "just happens"
good communication can be learned
4. practice tips
try to find a connection to or personal interest in other person's topic
avoid faking attention
and pretending to listen
listen to the words and try to picture what the speaker is saying
keep an open mind - don't judge
what is being said
pay attention to non-verbal cues
avoid external distractions
avoid power struggles
don't try to jump in and talk
listening does not equal agreement
leave emotion out when working through the challenging behavior
The Pieces of Reflective Listening
Piece One: Listener Orientation
Removing Preconceptions
Ask yourself these questions:
What kind of judgments do I have about this person?
What are the judgments based on?
How can I change these judgments to ensure that I am open-minded and ready for this situation?
Non-Verbal Cues
Make sure to...
Maintain eye contact
Maintain a relaxed body position (no crossed arms)
Maintain a clear path between you and the participant
Piece Two: Learning How to Listen
Signals of Participant's Emotions:
When the participant tells you what he/she is feeling
e.g. "I'm really frustrated with this"
When the participant puts specific emphasis on words
e.g. "What do you think I should do?"
"What do you think I should do?"
Nonverbal Cues
Body language that gives cues about the participant's feelings
e.g. Avoiding eye contact, folding the arms, or fidgeting
Piece Three: The Art of Reflection
Reflective Statements:
"I am hearing that you feel ______ about ______. Is this true?"
"It seems to me that you are ______ about ______. Am I correct?"
"You seem to be ______ because of ______. Would you agree?"
Responses to avoid:
Absolute statements
Downplaying the issue
Suggesting a solution
Taking over the conversation
Ending the Conversation
You are not responsible for solving your participant's problems. You are merely a tool for helping the participant clarify his/her emotions and understand what he/she is feeling and why.
Effective Listening
Effective Oral

What is Oral Communication?
At its most basic level, oral communication is the spoken interaction between two or more people.
However, what we intend to teach you is that the interaction is far more complex than it seems.
Toolkit with participants

Eye Contact
simplest thing you can do to establish a relationship
establishes you are listening
indicates receptiveness
basic expressive form
you can learn a lot from your participant by just reading what the eyes are saying
Body Language
messages you send through your body language affect how your participant perceives you
you want your body language to establish interest and sincerity toward your participant
Style and Register
your tone and pace of speech affect how your participant responds to you
match tone to participant
sound confident so that you do not lose credibility with your participant
give your participant time to take in what you have just said, or you risk losing your participant's attention
Understand Your participant
knowing your participant allows you to tailor your content
your participants will have differing levels of knowledge and differing expectations
identify speaking environment - public vs private
identify specific participant needs
Adapting to Your participant
determine what level of content and tone are appropriate to your participant
talk directly to the participant
use "people first" language
Active and Reflective Listening
pay particular attention to the environment
always listen to what your participant has to say
you broadcast a variety of verbal and non-verbal cues, and so does the participant
learn how to read and interpret those cues in order to be a successful communicator
effectiveness of your message is affected by how you carry yourself
Learning how to become an effective communicator will be one of the most valuable skills you can learn.
Knowing that you can effectively speak with others will give you the confidence to do well in many spheres of life.
As a direct care provider, you will find that being able to understand and communicate with your participants will make your job much easier and more rewarding.
they need to feel the ability to
communicate their
wants, needs, frustrations,
likes, dislikes, interests...
without rejection
participants we work with have
challenges in communication
however, all of us are emotional beings - bringing our own past experiences and history which can impact the communication
with participants
Full transcript