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Six Degrees of Separation

Optimize Blog - February 3, 2012 - 0 comments

Firstly thanks to all our readers for being patient with us as we took a break for the Christmas and New Year period. Anyway – we’re back!
Around eighty years ago a Hungarian author named Frigyes Karinthy wrote a short story called “Chain Links” in which he proposed that the idea that any two individuals in the world are connected by, at the most, five acquaintances. This thesis has been revived a number of times since then and is usually described as “Six Degrees of Separation”.
Of course, it is an unproven theory but there is a dynamic at work that links us to others around the world particularly with the proliferation and reach of social media.
On that basis it remains then a mystery why within the same building, office space or even room, we fail to communicate effectively. So here are some top tips to improve communication around your workspace:
1. Face to face works best. People relate to one another better when they can meet in person and read each other’s body language, so they can feel the energy the connection creates. If personal contact is not possible, the next best way to connect is by talking on the telephone. Email is not communication!!
2. No one achieves success alone so make an effort to get to know people in different departments within your company.
3. Always be courteous in your communications with others. Courtesy lets people know that you care.
4. Be consistent and clear. Consistency builds trust.
5. Compromise decreases the tension associated with conflict.
6. You cannot hold a person’s interest if you have nothing interesting to say.
7. Listen to what others are saying and show interest in the conversation. Listening demonstrates respect. Make your conversation like a game of tennis and keep the ball going back and forth.
Like all life skills you need to practice and be intentional about making it work. Communication does not happen by accident and it’s a two way street. So next time when you feel that six degrees of separation seems a little optimistic, take time to review how much effort you are putting into practicing and applying good communication skills.
Have a great 2012 and we look forward to being part of your successful journey……..

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