student ministry, youth worker, youth ministry

Communication Is A Skill

By Doug Franklin September 4, 2012

Every great leader develops an effective communication methods.  Some leaders emphasize the written word while others prefer verbal messages.  Some speak with quiet, hushed tones while others give rousing speeches.  There are many different ways to communicate.  The key is to use communication to your advantage. Without effective communication skills you will experience frustration and failure.

Leaders choose their words wisely.
A good communicator uses as few words as possible to deliver a powerful message. Choosing words carefully helps the leader offer sincere encouragement and criticism constructive criticism.  It requires less time, prevents misunderstandings, instills passion and generates more creative ideas.

Leaders sell the mission.
Great leaders sell the mission by igniting the hearts of their team.  They explain the why behind it.  The way the mission is sold determines whether the mission is simple or difficult to accomplish.  In selling the mission the leader turns digging ditches into building walls for a church.  A walk in the woods becomes a journey into relationships.

Leaders use powerful words to motivate and inspire.
Effective leaders understand that the powerful words are needed to convey their message.  Powerful words motivate.  They carry passion and emotion that motivates their team to tackle obstacles that are otherwise defeating.   Powerful words inspire.  People listen to the words of leaders that help them see the value of the mission.  By uniting a team around an inspiring message, the leader builds teamwork and buy-in.

Leaders use communication that leads to action.
Leaders understand that there is a desired outcome to their communication plan.  They never forget that communication has a purpose and that purpose is to lead to action.

Communication is more than words.
Communication is more than passing along a verbal set of commands.  Great leaders understand that they must effective communication is more than talking.  Let’s look at some ways we can communicate beyond just using words.

Leaders communicate with passion.
Leaders who communicate well do so with passion and emotion.  As humans we are naturally inclined to listen to passion.  We are excited by it.  In a public speaking setting you may have noticed when a speaker starts to get emotional; the entire audience is drawn in.

Communication is all about timing.
Knowing when to communicate is as important as understanding how to communicate.  A great communicator is always sensitive to their audience.  Understand where people are and meet them there.  When they need inspiration, be passionate.  When they need comfort, be compassionate.  When they need time to process information, be silent.

Leaders communicate with body language.
Often the strongest messages are sent with no words at all.  You can tell when your parents are pleased with you.  They smile.  They clap for you.  They hug you.  You can also tell when your parents are upset with you.  They frown.  They cry.  They look betrayed.  Nonverbal communication is a powerful tool.

Leaders utilize all their communication resources.
Great leaders understand that there are many ways to make sure their message is received.  People appreciate all types of communication.

About the Author

Doug Franklin

Doug Franklin is the president of LeaderTreks, an innovative leadership development organization focusing on students and youth workers. Doug and his wife, Angie, live in West Chicago, Illinois. They don’t have any kids, but they have 2 dogs that think they are children. Diesel and Penelope are Weimaraners  who never leave their side. Doug grew up in…  Read More