A reader writes:

Not to take away from the frustrations people experience either from layoffs or wrongful termination, I echo your point about the importance of ever improving communication skills. In this I include both written and verbal. Ironically, few resume’s exclude the phrase “strong communication skills,” yet the typical resume reflects exactly the opposite.

So, what exactly are good communication skills? In my mind we need to work on several areas to enhance them:

  • Organization of ideas
  • Building compelling arguments
  • Careful word selection to convey precise meaning
  • Concise delivery

Whether speaking or writing, the above list are 4 core areas that can be worked on separately. One of my favorite techniques is to respond to radio news stories as if I were being asked to respond to the question being posed.

I cannot tell you the number of times I personally have been granted “expert” status in a conversation, simply because I have become an above average communicator. The lesson for your audience is that often the credibility of your personal credentials, experience, and knowledge are largely dependent on your ability to communicate effectively.