How to communicate effectively for school projects and in the job interview and at work as a professional by using the methodology of communication you will now learn to be influential and persuasive and effective as a communicator.
This is no less important to your professional success than being able to program in Python or write a Mongo database in Json.
By using this methodology of communication you are programming the perceptual systems of your listener to understand and receive the knowledge and information and insights and inferences you are presenting, and to take action on those insights.
Hiring you into the job is an action you want them to take, at the job interview.
Consider, as an analogy to help you visualize the operation of this communication methodology, that when we train artificial intelligence and machine learning models, we use the teacher student method of training our own model which we are building from a large model such as Baby Llama. We inject into our student model the tokens and model weightings of the trainer model. Contemplate this analogy as you consider this communication methodology of claim, specification, impact statement to the listener.
When you want to be influential and persuasive as a business communicator, including at the job interview, you must, just like a machine learning engineer carefully selecting the training data to impart into its model, you must carefully select the tokens, that is the words you will use to create the right insights in your listener’s mind, and the weightings, the connections, between those words which create the semantic meaning to magnetize the consonant messaging in the theatre of the mind of their understanding, for the listener or reader whom you are presenting to.
Here is this communications methodology:
It is called “Claim, Specification, Impact statement to the Listener”.
This methodology is formally taught to managers at large corporations, to create a standardized experience of how to communicate effectively with colleages and to customers and senior management.
The use of this methodology will convey to you the mantle of professionalism This will grant your Goal of Being persuasive and influential. You will be recognized by other business professionals who have received this same training.
Most students have very poor communication, presentation and influence skills because they get their ideas and models on how to present from their instructors and teachers. Professors are generally very poor presenters because they use the academic modality of presentation which centres and focuses the interest of the presentation on the topic. This makes sense when you are teaching Calculus. Not so much when you wish to convince a customer to purchase your company’s services, or the Interviewer to hire you over the other candidates.
In business, we put the interests and concerns of our listeners and people were speaking to at the centre, and we organize everything in concentric circles out from there.
To make this happen, we start by researching, learning about, and thinking about the business domains and business concerns and pain points of the people we are presenting to.
Consider that when preparing for a job interview, you first do deep research and build your knowledge about the company, the job, the industry, and if possible even the person you are going to be speaking to.
Your organizing principle as a business professional is: “What interests our customers, fascinates us”.
So here is the methodology of Claim, Specification, and Impact statement to the listener.
Start by making a statement: that is, a claim, or an assertion which you want them to consider as being important it's what you're here to talk about.
Next, give more specifications, details, references and proof to substantiate, develop, and create the weightings between the tokens of your words.
Finally, and most crucially, this is what you been building up to all this time, fire up the Spot Light of understanding and tell them why this matters to them.
Make the impact statement clear, meaningful, and impelling for them to act on. Let them know why they must take action on these things that you are telling them.
Focus all your emotional and psychic energy on lighting up for them when they must take action on this constellation of concerns you have light up for them.
If you can tell them things that matter to them in their work business profession and industry, you will move up from being in the category of hired help to the valued and vaunted position of being an advisor partner and thought leader who has valuable information that they need which they cannot obtain anywhere else.
Thought leadership is the role and the goal you will attain.
To summarize, in business do not use the academic model of presentation. Use the business methodology of communication which is claim specification an most importantly impact statement to the listener.
Claim: Effective communication is your key to success in the business realm, equally, if not more, significant than your technical prowess.
Specification: Many technical professionals, including developers, data scientists, and architects, spend years honing their craft. They dive deep into languages like Python, construct intricate databases with JSON, and train machine learning models. However, many overlook the most potent tool in their arsenal - the art of influential communication. In our digital age, where technology and business are intricately linked, communicating your ideas, projects, and proposals effectively can determine your career trajectory.
Impact to You: Without this communication acumen, you risk becoming just another face in the crowd, regardless of how technically adept you are. But by mastering it, you become indispensable – an individual who doesn't just understand the intricacies of technology but can also convey them in a way that drives action.
Claim: Traditional academic presentation styles might not suffice in the business environment.
Specification: The academic realm often teaches presentation as a one-way delivery of information, focused on the content. But in business, it's an interactive dance. Here, the audience's interest, needs, and pain points take center stage. The aim isn't just to inform but to influence, persuade, and drive action.
Impact to You: By approaching your presentations with the mindset of a business communicator rather than an academic, you set yourself apart. Your audience, be it a potential employer, a manager, or a client, sees someone who understands their world and can be a valuable asset.
Claim: The 'Claim, Specification, Impact' methodology will transform your communication approach.
Claim: Begin with a clear, concise statement or assertion. This grabs attention and sets the stage for what's to come. Specification: Bolster your claim. Dive into details, share references, provide evidence, and develop your idea. This is where your technical expertise shines, but remember, it's not about complexity but clarity. Impact Statement: The culmination of your communication. Highlight why your audience should care, why this matters to their business, industry, or challenges. Make your call to action clear and compelling.
Impact to You: Using this structure, not only will you present your ideas effectively, but you'll also resonate with your audience's needs and concerns. When you walk into that job interview or present a project proposal, you won't just be another candidate or team member; you'll be a thought leader, a partner, someone with insights that are invaluable.
Claim: Effective communication is not just about speaking but also about extensive research and understanding.
Specification: Just as a developer wouldn't begin coding without understanding the project's requirements, a business communicator doesn't begin speaking without understanding the audience. Deep-dive research into the company, industry, and even the individual you're communicating with ensures your message aligns with their concerns and interests.
Impact to You: This understanding establishes a connection. You become more than a speaker; you become an advisor. Your words carry weight, not because they're eloquent, but because they're relevant.
In conclusion, as we forge ahead in our lessons, remember this: Your technical skills open doors, but your communication skills decide how far you walk through them. Embrace the 'Claim, Specification, Impact' methodology, and you'll be not only heard but also heeded.
Note to Students: Notice the structure of this lecture? Each section was carefully curated using the methodology we just discussed. Emulate it, practice it, and make it your own. Your success in the business realm depends on it.
As further reference and study material, watch this video on applying the principles of Emotional Smarts to your professional acumen skills:
Amplify your Effective Communication Game by learning to read and speak to the kinds of Personas people operate in.
Amplify your Effective Communication Game
Learning to Read and Speak to the Personalities People Operate In
To truly master effective communication, one needs to understand the different personas individuals operate within. By understanding these, we can fine-tune our messages to resonate most effectively with the receiver.
"The art of communication is the language of leadership." - James Humes
The Four Quadrant Personality Model
Imagine a circle, divided by two intersecting lines into four quadrants. Each quadrant represents a distinct personality type:
1. Driver Managers - The Outcome-Oriented Leaders
Not focused on others' feelings. Intensely driven by outcomes. Often prioritize schedule, deliverables, and goals over relationships. Typical Roles: Entrepreneurs, high-tech startup founders, and project managers. Under Pressure: They respond with anger and frustration. They value delivery and commitment over relationships. You can talk them down by enthusiastically affirming your emotional committment to delivering the team’s Mission.
"Effective leadership is not about making speeches or being liked; leadership is defined by results not attributes." - Peter Drucker
2. Influencer Expressives - The Motivating Mentors
Highly people and relationship-focused. Concerned about outcomes, but in a way that maintains and fosters positive relationships. Typical Roles: College professors, wedding planners, motivational speakers. Under Pressure: They internalize stress and offer guidance, aiming to keep things moving smoothly. As a leader, make sure you affirm to your Influencer Expressives how much you appreciate their efforts. This will fuel them to keep going.
"People don't care how much you know until they know how much you care." - Theodore Roosevelt
3. Social Amiables - The Harmonizing Diplomats
Prioritize relationships and want to be liked. Less concerned about outcomes, more focused on process, etiquette, and proper behavior. Typical Roles: HR professionals, customer service reps, therapists. Under Pressure: They work to ease tensions, mediate conflicts, and ensure everyone feels valued. As a leader, make sure you affirm to your Influencer Expressives how much you appreciate their efforts. This will fuel them to keep going.
"In the middle of difficulty lies opportunity." - Albert Einstein
4. Analytic Conscientious - The Detailed Experts
Value processes and proper execution. Less relationship-focused, more centered on delivering precise results. Typical Roles: Accountants, surgeons, programmers, engineers. Under Pressure: They stick to their methodologies, emphasizing the right way of doing things. They may lash out by stating that they are not being given the right inputs, data, or resources. You can bring them back into the Focus Zone by rolling up your sleeves and sitting with them to formulate the right data and resource planning to assure them that their concerns for doing the job in the Right Way is being heard and values.
"It's not about being right; it's about getting it right." - Brian K. Reaves
Balancing a team with a mix of these personas is crucial. Each persona brings unique strengths and understanding them ensures effective communication and collaboration.
"Coming together is a beginning, staying together is progress, and working together is a success." - Henry Ford
By understanding and applying knowledge about these personas, we can navigate complex communication landscapes more effectively and build stronger, more understanding relationships both in the professional world and outside it.
As a leader, manager, or someone to aspires to Leadership, train your senses and perceptions to observe the structural dynamics of your Organization, team, or unit. If you have a dysfunctional or non performing team, it is very likely because you do not have a proper balance of all four personality personas contributing to the delivery of your product or mission. If as a junior team member, you learn to assist other team members in the appropriate way, you will be valued, appreciated, and promoted.
Conclusion: Start Now to Reach the Pinnacle Later
Aspiring for Leadership from Day One
It's a common misconception that leadership and management roles are for the future. However, true professionals recognize that leadership begins on the very first day of your job, regardless of your title.
"To handle yourself, use your head; to handle others, use your heart." - Eleanor Roosevelt
Own Your Role, No Matter How Small
Every role in an organization is a stepping stone to the next level. It's not just about executing tasks; it's about:
Extreme Ownership: Take complete responsibility for your tasks. If it's your job, it's your responsibility. Innovation: Always seek ways to enhance, streamline, and improve the task at hand. Whether it's server backups or client interactions, there's always room for improvement. Consistency: A task done well once is commendable. A task done well consistently is a sign of a true professional.
"Don't find fault, find a remedy." - Henry Ford
Dress for the Role You Want
A timeless principle in professional growth is to not just settle for the expectations of your current role. Instead:
Envision the Future: Where do you see yourself in 5 or 10 years? Let that vision guide your actions. Behave Proactively: Don't wait for opportunities; create them. Let your actions, attire, and attitude reflect your aspirations. Seek Feedback: Always be in the loop about how you're perceived, and be open to feedback. It's the only way to truly grow.
"Act as if what you do makes a difference. It does." - William James
Recognition from Senior Leadership
By adopting these behaviors:
Senior management, who've often been trained in the same principles, will quickly recognize your value. They'll see patterns of leadership, ownership, and innovation in your work. This recognition isn't just about promotions; it's about respect, trust, and being seen as a valuable asset to the team.
"Leadership and learning are indispensable to each other." - John F. Kennedy
The Success Zone
All of these principles converge to one focal point - the Success Zone. It's the sweet spot where:
You're recognized by peers and superiors alike for your worth. Opportunities aren't given but created by your actions. Professional growth is not an aspiration, but a daily reality.
By consistently applying these principles and skills, not only will you be prepped for success, but you'll also be positioned as a leading figure in your domain, irrespective of the title on your business card.
"Success usually comes to those who are too busy to be looking for it." - Henry David Thoreau
Dress, Act, and Conduct yourself for the Job you want, not the job you are currently doing.
Effective Communication & Leadership Skills: A Student's Checklist - "Journey to Mastery: A Blueprint for Purposeful Achievement" Checklist
"Don't set goals for the things you want to have. Set Goals for daily practice and execution of the things you need to do to get the things you want to have."
Effective communication combined with understanding diverse personality personas lays the foundation for aspiring professionals to thrive in leadership roles. Here's a comprehensive checklist for students to follow, ensuring they embody the principles discussed:
1. Communication Skills Mastery
Claim, Specification, Impact Methodology
Claim: Begin your communication by making a statement or assertion. Specification: Provide details, references, and evidence to substantiate your claim. Impact: Clearly convey why the information matters to your listener. Evoke a need for action.
2. Recognizing and Engaging with Personality Personas
Driver Managers (Quadrant 1)
Recognize when someone prioritizes outcomes and disregards personal feelings. Communicate with clear, direct messages focusing on objectives.
Influencer Expressives (Quadrant 2)
Identify individuals who combine people-focused sentiments with outcome concerns. Engage with positivity, acknowledgment, and shared goals.
Social Amiables (Quadrant 3)
Detect those who value interpersonal relationships and proper etiquette. Engage with warmth, recognition, and mutual respect.
Analytic Conscientious (Quadrant 4)
Recognize professionals who emphasize processes without much weight on interpersonal interactions. Communicate with precision, clarity, and a focus on technical accuracy.
3. Embody Leadership & Ownership from Day One
Take Extreme Ownership of your tasks, from inception to completion. Constantly innovate and look for ways to enhance the efficiency and efficacy of your tasks. Exhibit proactive behavior, seeking feedback, and aligning actions with future leadership roles. Display behavior that goes beyond your current role – dress and act for the position you aspire to.
4. Foster Growth & Recognition
Engage in continuous learning, attending workshops, courses, or self-study to refine your skills. Develop a keen sense of understanding and empathy, recognizing varied personality types and their nuances. Consistently reflect on feedback, using it constructively to refine your approach and actions. Actively network with peers, mentors, and senior management to gain insights and foster growth opportunities.
Remember: Regularly review this checklist and self-assess. These principles are not just to be understood but embodied and lived daily. Leadership is not a position but a daily practice, and communication is its bedrock.