The 4 C’s of effective communication

leadership Jun 08, 2016

I often think about how important communication is in shaping our future. Our work is only as good as how well we can communicate it. We focus so much on the content, the ‘what’ and the ‘how’, and much less time on the ‘who’ and the ‘why’. Over the years I have communicated complex concepts to various audiences. I have recently distilled the framework that I believe sits behind the conversations that were the most effective.


This represents the energy you bring to your conversations. It is your passion which is fed from your belief in what you are talking about.


Clarity is like a fine wine. It takes time to mature and as it does it becomes refined. Your communication should be crafted with the intention of making it as simple as possible with a very clear intention and context.


For people to want to be involved in working with you they need to feel personally connected with you and your vision. A personal connection can only be formed in the presence of empathy, compassion and love. I can hear the cringe. Love is not a word often used in business, though the deliberate cultivation of love for those people you are in service with, and for, is a galvanising force.


Knowing who you are, your purpose and what your values are, feeds your conscience so that when/if you deviate from that intention, you can’t bear but get back on track. It’s not your head, but your heart that corrects your path.

So when you are listening to somebody, completely, attentively, then you are listening not only to the words, but also to the feeling of what is being conveyed, to the whole of it, not part of it.—Jiddu Krishnamurti

It is so important to remember that you are a person speaking with another person. You are not an entrepreneur speaking with an investor, they are the roles you step in and out of. The decisions are still being made by a person who happens to have the knowledge and experience of an investor but has the beliefs and motivations of a human. And you also need to speak to a person’s beliefs and motivations, rather than just their knowledge and experience. The ‘what’ and ‘how’ speaks to their role, the ‘why’ speaks to their person.  

Featured image credit Justin Lynham  Image Licence Creative Commons 

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