How to be Direct
We are constantly afraid of overstepping our bounds or offending the wrong person, which sometimes leads us to sidestep and maneuver around what are we really trying to say. Being direct in one’s conversations, emails, or memos opens a whole new door to effective communication.
In her article “Five Ways to Become the Direct Person You’ve Always Wanted to Become at Work” Jane Burnett describes how to be direct while keeping other people’s thoughts and emotions in mind. She recommends, above all else, putting yourself in the other person’s shoes and understanding their point of view– what is important to them? What will they take away from the conversation? These questions will better allow you to communicate effectively and directly.
Additionally, Burnett notes the importance of clearly, concisely stating what it is you’re trying to say. Sidestepping or dancing around the issue at hand doesn’t do you any favors, and will actually further bury the message you’re trying to give. There is never any need to be rudely blunt, but taking away the fluff we so often add to our conversations will make us better communicators.
At the end of the day it boils down to simply being present, conscientious, and aware when having a conversation. No cover-up or sidestepping required.