The power of communication is a fantastic thing. Reflect upon a recent conversation with someone that went great. The one whereas you walked away you felt like you had a clear image or purpose from what was discussed. The chances are that person was a great communicator. Maybe they told a great story or painted a crystal clear picture. There’s a variety of ways to be a great communicator.
Great communicators tend to exhibit most of the following traits when communicating.
- State facts: Inaccurate information leads to all sorts of issues, none of them good. Great communicators can state known facts so that everyone understands.
- Get personal: Let’s be honest. Most of us don’t listen very well unless we can relate to what someone is saying. It has to hit us personally on some level. T’s like how a good recruiter can relate commonalities with the potential candidates they speak with.
- Listen: A lot of people don’t think about this, but communication is a two-way street. Great communicators are also great listeners. When you actively listen to someone, it shows you actually care about what they are saying, and you can respond appropriately. People love to feel understood.
- Ask for clarity: To go along with listening it’s important to get clarification on things that aren’t clear. Don’t be afraid to ask someone to explain something further if you don’t understand it.
- Question: Good communicators always ask questions. It helps them understand things better. It also allows them to understand their audience. After I explain what my company does I almost always ask “Does that make sense?” I want people to understand the business.
- Get specific: Strong communicators can get to the heart of the matter quickly. Just because you like to talk doesn’t mean everyone else wants to listen. Get to the essential information clearly and quickly.
- Watch body language: Being aware of someone’s body language is critical to being a good communicator. Non-verbal clues can tell you as much if not more than verbal clues.
How Being a Great Communicator Helps Your Recruiting
Managers: First of all, think about those intake sessions. You know, the ones where the hiring manager gives you a ten-word summary of what they are looking for. Being a good communicator can help you pull more information out of managers. Let them know that you’re working on their behalf to find the right candidate. The more they can share with you (ask questions, clarify, listen) the better equipped you will be to find the right folks.
Strong communication skills will help you navigate the interview gauntlet as well. If your company doesn’t have much of a process, your strong communication can help show them how a process helps. I don’t know about you, but I get feedback from managers sometimes that is “not a fit.” Guess what? That doesn’t help me OR you. Let’s talk about why someone wasn’t a fit. This way I’m better prepared to give the candidate feedback and adjust my search accordingly.
Candidates: There are so many areas where great communication with candidates helps everyone. To start with your ability to articulate what your company does. Drilling down another level where you show the candidate that this role makes an impact at the company. Listening and paying attention to what is essential to the candidate in their next role is hugely beneficial.
As the candidate moves or doesn’t move, through the interview process, clear communication is critical. It’s been said a million times – a candidate would much rather hear a “No, and here’s why” than crickets if they don’t get selected. Letting them know status updates on a regular basis is the sign of a great recruiter and communicator. I have had hiring managers that somehow enjoy agonizing over every little detail about a candidate. This process moves super slowly, and knowing this, I prepare a candidate when I first speak with them.
Your team: Whether you work with 25 other recruiters or 2 others in the HR department, team communication is essential for great teamwork. Being able to connect, share facts and updates, ask questions and listen helps everyone work better together. It helps to create the sense of team. Plus it’s worth mentioning the power of listening in communication again. Everyone wants to be heard and understood.
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Having strong communication skills helps you in many areas of your life. There’s no doubt communicating clearly and effectively pays huge dividends as a recruiter. The benefits are not only to you but also to your candidates, hiring managers, and team.