Successful leaders understand that continued success means continually striving for self-improvement and ways to be better communicators, regardless of their industry. The three primary forms of communication in this day and age include verbal, written, and visual. Becoming the best leader starts by having a good communication plan in place.

Verbal Communication

Verbal communication includes any form of oral speaking in front of another person or a group of people. The most important tip is to plan every speech ahead of time. Some people are good at improvising when public speaking, but it helps to provide an outline of every main point that needs to be covered. This comes in very handy if you lose your place or find yourself getting distracted.

Written Communication

Leaders need to master all communication forms, which include articulating their messages in typed or printed format. Written communication consists of the use of emails, letters, memos, text messages, and direct mail materials. Some leaders communicate more through writing emails than by meeting people in person, so knowing how to compose and respond to emails is especially important. Being prompt when responding to emails is just as important as writing in a professional and considerate tone.

Virtual Communication

Due to the ongoing pandemic, more professionals are working on virtual platforms, such as videoconferences, live chats, and email messages. Because of this, the new trend nowadays is to improve virtual communication skills at all levels. Modern-day leaders have to know how to use essential video conferencing software tools and provide stable Internet connections. This is an entirely different method of communicating online, so new etiquette guidelines must be followed. When hosting a virtual meeting, the host should prepare ahead of time. Since time lags may occur with several software programs running simultaneously, patience is required. In addition, it’s harder to control a group of people when each person is in a different location and being distracted by his or her surroundings, so enforce the rules set in place to make sure that every person is paying attention.

Communication is the foundation of all forms of effective leadership. Without it, a leader cannot get his or her message across to help people understand, admire and follow.