Effective communication skills are critical for the functioning of both private and public organizations. In many cases, the exchange of information is vital for decision-making in businesses and their adaptation to the change in external environment. This paper is aimed at showing that the management of stress is the most vital skill of effective business communicators who can interact with people with various backgrounds and values.
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So, this issue is of great importance to employees, managers, and leaders who may have to resolve a great number of conflicts in the workplace. This argument is based on two premises. First of all, stress significantly impairs individual and organizational performance (Ongori & Agolla, 2008, p. 125).
To some extent, it undermines the interactions among employees, their attitude toward their duties, and the goals that are set by the management. This is one of the main issues that should be taken into account.
This is why it is critical for employees to know how stress can be managed or at least alleviated. Secondly, this goal can be achieved with the help of different communicative techniques such clear goal-setting, humor, or empathy. These are the main questions that should be analyzed more closely.
It should be kept in mind that stress is one of the main factors that significantly impairs the performance of various organizations. This problem can lead to such difficulties as absenteeism, decreased productivity, increasing rates of turnover, unwillingness of people to help one another, and growing number of sick leaves (Ongori & Agolla, 2008, p. 125).
These are some of main impacts that scholars identify while examining the challenges that different companies can encounter. Apart from that, employees, who have to cope with stress, are not committed to the long-term goals that the management sets (Ongori & Agolla, 2008, p. 125). They are more interested in following specific instructions set by the executives.
However, they do not want to take any initiates. As a result, the performance of a business can become stagnant in the long term. Additionally, such people are more likely to enter into conflicts with others. They usually become very irritable and their responses cannot be accurately predicted.
Moreover, these individuals often have to struggle with emotional and physical burnout. This is one of the reasons why ability to manage stress is critical for managers or leaders who are responsible for ensuring the development of businesses or public organizations.
On the whole, a person, who is able to manage stress, is better able to adjust to new workplace environment. As a rule, such individuals can better accomplish the objectives that differ from their daily routine. Apart from that, they can better avoid conflicts with their colleagues. This is why it is critical to remember about the methods that can reduce the level of stress.
This task is of great relevance to managers and leaders because this problem is directly related to productivity of businesses, decision-making, and even its overall sustainability.
This is the main reason why this issue requires close attention of HR professionals and leaders who should make sure that workers remain committed to the goals of the organization. Therefore, managing stress can be important for the sustainability of businesses that operate in a very changing environment.
One can argue that managing stress can also be related to the domain of communication skills. People, who want to become effective communicators, should know to attain this goal. For example, a mere encouragement given by a leader can reassure an employee and make this person more motivated (McLean, 2010).
Additionally, in this way, it is possible to raise the self-esteem of this individual. More importantly, this individual can become more resistant to stress because he/she can feel the support of other people. Therefore, the empowerment of people is vital for managing stress and reducing the risk of conflicts. Similarly, in many cases, a joke can alleviate the tension that can be experienced by employees.
In other words, humor can play an important role for reducing the tension (McLean, 2010). Additionally, researchers believe that managers should focus on such an issue as goal setting (Lee & Schuler, 1980). The problem is that many workers can experience stress if managers cannot properly formulate the requirements that employees should meet.
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Therefore, effective communicators should know how to avoid ambiguity (Lee & Schuler, 1980). Furthermore, employees and managers should bear in mind that stress can result from the inability or unwillingness of people to put themselves in the position of others (McNaughton, 2008). This issue is particularly typical of those individual who do not have developed listening skills.
As a rule, they pay little attention to the emotions of others. Such behavior can increase the likelihood of stressful situation in the workplace. Therefore, it is important to focus on the development of active listening skills.
These examples are important because they suggest that an individual can resolve stress by adopting effective communication strategies. This is one of the main arguments that can be put forward. This issue is of great concern to people who guide and coordinate the efforts of many employees.
Admittedly, stress cannot be attributed only to the lack of communication skills. Such an assumption cannot be fully justified. It should be taken into account that some individuals are more likely to feel tension at the time when they have to work under challenging circumstances. Sometimes, they may require psychological assistance. This aspect is also vital for understanding the origins of stress.
Furthermore, there are some external factors which can make an individual less resistant to stress. For example, one can speak about such factors as lack of clear instructions, insufficient support of the management, rigid timelines that are set by the management, inadequate compensation system or bulling (Brough & Williams, 2007, p. 560). Therefore, one cannot reduce the problem of stress only to communication.
Nevertheless, in most cases, this problem can be effectively resolved provided that an individual can effectively interact with others. This point should also be taken into consideration by managers.
Overall, this discussion indicates that the ability to manage stress is critical for effective communication in any workplace. Admittedly, there are other qualities that should not be overlooked. For instance, one can mention the ability to inspire other people or motivate them.
However, the examples discussed in this paper suggest that stress is one of the key problems that should be addressed. One should not forget that it can adversely influence the attitudes of employees and their performance. In turn, the adoption of effective communication strategies can reduce the level of stress.
Brough, P., & Williams, J. (2007). Managing Occupational Stress in a High-Risk Industry: Measuring the Job Demands of Correctional Officers. Criminal Justice and Behavior, 34(4), 555-567.
Lee, C., & Schuler, R. (1980). Goal Specificity and Difficulty and Leader Initiating Structure as Strategies For Managing Role Stress. Journal of Management (6)2, 177-187.
McLean, S. (2010). Business Communication for Success. New York, NY: Flat World Knowledge.
McNaughton, D. (2008). Learning to Listen: Teaching an Active Listening Strategy to Preservice Education Professionals. Topics in Early Childhood Special Education 27 (4), 223-231.
Ongori, H., & Agolla, J. (2008). Occupational Stress in Organizations and Its Effects on Organizational Performance. Journal Of Management Research, 8(3), 123-135.