Finding the right balance between Communication techniques to persuade and influence in the creative industries is key to both presenting ideas and winning projects. It is also crucial to avoid communication pitfalls when you can in order to keep the work place environment running smoothly and a space that encourages the best in the creatives that work there. Here are some examples of Communication Techniques, Communication Difficulties and techniques used to influence and persuade in the Creative Industries.
1.1 Communication Techniques
Humans are a species that stand our because of our verbal communication skills, there are theories that our Neanderthal rivals weren’t as successful as Homo-Saipans because they weren’t able to communicate with each other as efficiently.
Verbal communication includes presentations where you present your ideas to groups, telephone or conference calls and simply telling people about your idea with spoken words. Language choice is important to communicate ideas effectively and can be altered to suit the audience and increase your chance of persuading your clients to back your ideas and pitch.
However the power of words can only go so far and a great deal of your communication power actually comes from non-verbal sources such as your body language, tone of voice and visual presentation. Non-Verbal communication can be anything from the way you dress and present yourself to the way you dress and present your ideas. Using ethusiastic body language (but don’t go too over the top) and infusing your language with the appropriate emotion can help you communicate your ideas and persuade your audience effectively.
Communication is everywhere in the modern world so it makes sense that a lot of Communication Techniques are now online as well as face to face. Skype, Conference Calls and Video Presentations are examples of how to use online tools to communicate your ideas. They are all excellent resources but are dependant on internet connection and technology being on your side.
A picture paints 1000 words, but words are still a valuable way to communicate your ideas with others, especially if you are not able to present in person. Examples of using written words to persuade include letters, reports and white papers which can influence a decision from your audience or perspective client.
1.2 Techniques Used to Persuade and Influence Others
Within the above communication techniques there are also ways to persuade and influence others to go with your ideas and work with you (and not all of them are negative!).
Positive encouragement with reassuring language can be used to make a client or employee feel empowered so they feel more capable to achieve the task set.
People can also be persuaded to work with you because of your reputation which can be shown through case studies and previous client testimonies.
Building a sense of trust with your audience through an engaging and collaborative presentation can also be effective to influence and persuade others as it helps them feel like they have shared ownership of the idea and therefore feel more invested.
Finally, the visual style and nature of your pitch and communication can help you persuade and influence others by inspiring them to get on board with your idea which is of course, the best idea they will have been presented with.
1.3 Communication Difficulties
Of course, smooth communication isn’t always plain sailing, in fact if it was World Peace would be a lot more likely.
Within the Creative Industries communication difficulties can occur for a number of reasons. Technical Jargon (language specific to an industry but fairly useless elsewhere) can often alienate an audience and leave then looking up definitions rather than getting enthusiastic about your ideas. Even worse there is a chance you could be using the wrong words in the wrong scenarios which doesn’t help your reputation or your ideas.
Technology can also play its part in making communication difficult as software bugs, internet connection, time zones and general gremlins in the work can always scupper an international presentation via Skype.
Then there are the personal aspects of how people like to communicate. If one member of your team is particularly introvert they may not respond well to daily meetings and presentations in front of the CEO. Likewise, extrovert employees and clients may not respond well to never being able to discus ideas face to face or on the phone.
Finally, there is the risk of assumed knowledge where it is presumed, often wrongly, that everyone is on the same page with an idea or project. This is easily rectified with clear communication between team member but can verge on patronising or procrastinating if overdone.