Good inter-personal communication is the exchange of information between two or more people. It is the process of sharing messages clearly and concisely to achieve mutual understanding. Good communication is about understanding instructions, acquiring new skills, making requests, asking questions and relaying information with ease. Communication is not a one way process. It is a two-way process. The sender is as important as the receiver and the receiver is as important as the sender. To achieve mutual understanding, both parties have to be involved.

Inter-personal communication

Most people struggle with good inter-personal communication because they do not consider the other party. They are only interested in passing the message across without making sure the other party understands. A lot of people don’t have good inter-personal communication skills. It is harder for those who also lack inter-personal relationship skills (introverts and anti- social people) but that doesn’t mean extroverts have better communication skills.

Inter-personal relationship covers written messages, verbal messages, including body language. For written messages, your messages must be clear, concise, coherent, complete, and correct. You do not want to confuse the recipient of the message (the reader).

Verbal message, you have to be mindful of your tone and language. You might be saying something that is totally harmless but because of the manner in which you raised your voice, the wrong message might be conveyed to the person you are speaking to.

Your body language is also very important during inter-personal communication. Your gestures and facial expressions say as much as your words. Avoid restless behaviors. Relax and maintain eye contact.

Good inter-personal communication is very important. It fosters great relationship between people. It reduces friction and conflicts. It enhances productivity (in the workplace).  It helps to build strong connections. It can boost one’s credibility. You become more open and transparent to others if you communicate well. Read more.

In every conversation, each party involved already has their opinions and prejudice that makes it harder for them to communicate effectively. Here is a few ways to communicate better;

Good inter-personal communication: 3 ways to communicate better

  1. Listen- It is said that most people listen to reply, they do not listen to understand. Listening is paying close attention to details of a particular information or message to understand the intent of the sender and the meaning of the information. Listening in communication is basically paying attention to absorb information. To communicate better, you have to calm down to pay adequate attention to the other party. Do not filter pieces of the information that you are interested in. Listen to the message as a whole. When you do not listen, you will easily misunderstand the messages being conveyed. Without listening, there will be communication breakdown.

2. Explain- It is very important to explain during inter-personal communication. You have to understand the other party cannot read your mind or your intent. If you do not explain, they will not understand. Do not assume the other person is on the same page as you and they ought to understand without you explaining. Always explain unless the other person makes it clear to you that they truly understand the information you are trying to pass across. Explaining just makes it easier to absorb information and establish clarity.

3. Understand perspective- This is similar to the collaboration approach in conflict resolution. Everyone cannot have the same stance, opinion or view on topics or issues. Never try to show superiority or show the need to be right in a conversation. Taking a look at the other person’s perspective to understand their view makes communication easier. Your perspectives might be different but that doesn’t mean one party’s right or better and vice-versa. The best way to achieve mutual understanding is to respect and accept the perspective of the other party.