The importance of communication: From interview to promotion
There’s no doubt that communication is vital to the success of your career. Being a good communicator can make a huge difference to how well you progress and navigate through your career, right from an interview, to securing your dream role. Good communicators tend to be the people who progress the fastest which is why as a recruiter, this is one of the first things I assess when speaking to candidates.
How the Interview Process has Changed
Many of us have now had to experience the challenges of interviewing remotely through videocalls in recent years and this has had a huge impact on how the process is carried out. The recruitment process has changed vastly as a whole, often being much swifter, given there’s less focus on aligning availability to meet in person.
During the initial interview stage, recruiters are now selecting a broader range of candidates to interview, focusing often on not only the right skill set, but also transferrable skills, as communication and culture fit are just as important (if not more important) to ensure a good fit between employer and new employee. Being able to convey your abilities and personality through the separation of a screen is crucial to succeeding in an interview.
Communication and the Workplace
The importance of good communication doesn’t stop at the interview. When you join a new company, making connections with your colleagues and external stakeholders will be essential from your very first day.
In a recent blog from Communication Theory*, they list the five ways that communication can help your performance in the workplace:
- Starting a task: From smaller tasks to full-scale projects, your level of communication can determine your success from the very beginning. At the start of a project, contacting all those involved and fostering a positive relationship with them will help your project develop more smoothly and provide a better end result.
- Managing your workload: Throughout your career, no matter your role or level within a business, coordinating with your colleagues will be an everyday necessity in completing and assessing the progress of your workload.
- Influencing your colleagues: Becoming an influential part of your organisation can set you apart and put you on track for a promotion. Good communication tactics, such as being persuasive, assertive, and engaging can help with this.
- Being supportive: Showing empathy and offering advice is also part of being a great communicator and can have a positive effect on those around you. People will always work better together in an environment where they feel heard and understood.
- Reaching your full potential: The better your ability to communicate, the easier it will be for you to express your other skills and accomplishments which can have a tangible effect on the company’s success and your own personal growth.
As recruiters, we’re constantly emphasising the importance of communication. Throughout the recruitment process we will supply you with great feedback and helpful tips, so make sure you put these into practice!
Keep in mind, recruitment companies are speaking to hiring managers day in, day out about what they are looking for and what they want to see in their interviews. This means the advice you receive at the very start will be useful throughout your career with your new employer.
Using Communication to Raise your Profile
Now that we’ve covered how important communication is within the workplace, how exactly do you become an excellent communicator? Below is a list of things you need to remember and practice:*
- Clarity – Being clear and concise will help prevent miscommunication. It is important for you to be clear about your career goals from the start; this shows ambition and determination.
- Confidence – The most successful candidates we see are those that have confidence. Believe in yourself! Confidence doesn’t always come easy to everyone, but by pushing yourself out of your comfort zone you can build on your self-assurance. Be aware of where you’re adding value.
- Consistency – Being reliable and responsive at all times will ensure you are delivering what you set out to and that your work is progressing as it should.
- Curiosity – Asking questions is not only a great way to learn but also shows that you’re invested in your work. Inquisitiveness is vital to building both your knowledge base and relationships.
- Economy – Make sure you’re choosing the most effective form of communication for the task and for the person you’re communicating with. This becomes easier the more you come to know your colleagues. Following up a call with an email summarising action points will help to remind both parties of the subjects that have been raised.
- Active Listening – No one wants to feel like they aren’t being listened to during a conversation. Eye contact is a huge indicator of how much you’re paying attention to those around you. Even when you’re taking notes, make sure you regularly look back at those you’re speaking with to show you’re really absorbing the information they’re providing.
- Feedback – Be open to feedback. Communication should flow both ways and allows you to improve your communication skills as you develop throughout your career. Don’t be afraid to give feedback yourself. By doing so, you’ll find both you and your colleagues will work more efficiently with each other. If you are uncomfortable sharing feedback, then a good rule of thumb can be to keep it factual, avoid opinion.
- Networking – Good communication shouldn’t begin and end with the colleagues within your business, push yourself out of your comfort zone and make positive connections with people beyond your company. You never know who may prove to be a useful contact in the future.
- Preparation – Putting in prep time before interviews and meetings can make a massive difference in your execution of many of the above. You’ll be more clear, confident and concise if you’ve done all the preparation beforehand to be well informed for meetings.
Overall, if you prioritise communication throughout your career, you’ll find that you will move from strength to strength and have a wholly more positive experience, making great connections along the way.
About the Author
Ani Pannell is the Country Director for Oliver James Switzerland, an international recruitment agency with 14 offices around the world. Ani has over 9 years recruitment experience and has worked in a variety of industries, supporting people all over the world with their careers.
The importance of communication: From interview to promotion Description