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Effective Conversations: A list of reminders to communicate like a leader

Recruiters have made it clear that communication skills are essential in any field of work. Besides that, if you think about it, there are so many other valuable soft skills that require you to be a strong communicator, such as: persuasion, public speaking, negotiation, storytelling, etc.

Additionally, it has been proven that good communicators are better listeners than most! It’s safe to say these are essential skills for any team to be successful.

“But what if I’m not a people person?” That ‘s okay! No one’s born knowing everything. Thankfully, communication skills can and should be practiced, even if you think yours can’t get any better.

Check these 5 reminders that’ll help you communicate more effectively.

Showing emotion isn’t unprofessional

Everyone wants to “look good”. More often than not, the fear of showing an over-the-top reaction will get in the way of our listening and speaking. Keep in mind that it’s deflating to be around someone who is impossible to impress. Be excited for a co-worker’s achievements and congratulate your team on their success, you’re not being “soft”, you’re being kind.

Not a competition

Another way of killing the joy in any conversation. If someone is talking to you about how excited they are for their next trip to France, telling them “I’ve gone there 4 times and it’s not that great” is not the right thing to say, try to recommend places to visit instead. Making others feel inferior will lead to a failed conversation.

It’s ok to be wrong

The need to be right may emerge from a fear of being disrespected. Or it can come from the fear of being seen as we truly are – imperfect human beings who are flawed and full of inconsistencies and contradictions. Being right does not make you better than anyone else and insisting on it will show off your insecurities.

Let others speak

Interrupting people is one of the most common mistakes to make in conversations and yet, it’s the most overlooked. Be self aware enough to recognize if you do this often in order to “catch yourself” in future conversations.

Don’t assume bad intent

If someone disagrees with you in a conversation that doesn’t mean they’re attacking you and your perspective. Unless they’re disrespectful towards you, avoid being defensive over your argument, it’ll make you seem less secure in your answers and point of view.

 

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Ask AIESECers: Communication and community during a pandemic

It’s been an atypical year for all of us. COVID-19 forced us to distance ourselves from everyone and everything we were used to. If there’s anything that we’ve all shared during this time is the constant feeling of uneasiness and uncertainty. So, we had no option but to adapt.

Some might be afraid of it, but throughout this journey we discovered many benefits that came from change: different ways of socialization have been normalized and new work methods have been popularized. In fact, companies like Facebook, Twitter and Slack plan to make remote work the new normal.

In this article, we try to understand how being a part of the largest youth-led organization in the world may have affected these AIESECers’ experience during the pandemic. Here are their answers:

 

Tringa Demiri – B2C team member in LC Graz

“I joined AIESEC very blindly and at first it was hard to meet everyone and feel fully integrated. Little did I know I couldn’t have joined at a better time. Our team meetings were the perfect opportunity to share our feelings about everything that was happening in the world and it’s as if the people I work with gave me a blueprint to bettering myself. The biggest lesson I learned during the pandemic was to be grateful for everything I have and try to see the positive side of things as much as I can.”

 

 

Marinela Dimitrova – B2C team member in LC Vienna UV

“AIESEC allowed me to develop my communication skills, both in english and german, with none of them being my first language. Besides that, it was great to be able to connect with my team regularly, we’ve become friends and very supportive of each other. During this time I’ve also learned my level of productivity depends only on myself and my work in the organization has motivated me to procrastinate less.”

 

 

Hanna Gsell – Social Media Team Leader in National Support Team

“Personally, as someone who enjoys travelling a lot, I learned to appreciate my family and my surroundings a lot more. Even though working from home allowed me to have a more flexible schedule, after a while I really missed human interaction. Therefore, the social dimension of AIESEC was an important part of my life during quarantine, the organization’s atmosphere is very supportive and it was good to be able to get close to people, even though it was harder to communicate.”

 

If these stories have something in common, is how helpful the social aspect of AIESEC has been during isolation. In a time when no one knows what the future holds, working with like-minded people towards a similar goal has given our members a sense of security.

You can be part of this community too!! AIESEC is currently recruiting. If you’d like to develop yourself within a supportive circle, you can join here.

Why I joined AIESEC at Vienna University of Technology

I am Behzard Parvin, an International Student from Iran studying Master of Electrical Engineering at Vienna University of Technology. I joined AIESEC after attending info evening held at Vienna University of Technology. The reason I decided to become a member of this organization was to improve my leadership skills and find new friends along the way, as I was new in the city. Another important driver was that I really wanted to improve my communication skills, as I realized I would need to be better at it in my future if I want to pitch a project or an idea, present myself to a company or communicate my ideas to a group of people.

After working with AIESEC for a semester, I can clearly see a change – I can say that I have gained practical experience and developed many soft skills needed for my future. That is why I decided to continue with my AIESEC experience and am currently the newly elected Vice President in our office at TU, in charge of bringing people from all around to world to an internship in Austria, to teach them more about Austrian culture, lifestyle and uniqueness.

taco-momentsBecoming a vice president opens a lot of possibilities – I will be able to lead a team of people, achieve certain goals and strive for success. This will be a great asset to my future and my career as an Engineer, because one day I wish to be in a management position where I will have to lead a team. The skills such as critical thinking, negotiating, interacting with the higher management and many others that I will develop now, will come in handy one day and make my job much easier.

While I was studying in Iran, I have been active in many extra-curricular activities but by joining AIESEC I learned more about how to communicate effectively not just to people from Austria or Europe, but to people of diverse backgrounds. The team in AIESEC is a multicultural one and counts more than 30 different nationalities within 4 local offices in Vienna. Understanding cultural diversity and different mindsets and meeting people from all around the world by attending numerous conferences, was one of the greatest experiences I gained as a member of AIESEC.