Communication is important both personally and professionally. Communicating effectively is essential for a productive work environment but can often be difficult and therefore takes practice.
Interns may feel intimidated about expressing themselves to their manager and coworker. Here are 5 ways to keep the lines of communication open and show your intern that you are listening.
- Eliminate distractions
Give your undivided attention – no cell phone, email, or walking during the conversation.
- Pay attention to body language
Look interns in the eye. Uncross your arms. Sit at a comfortable distance. Don’t overlook their nonverbals.
- Reframe or Repeat
Show that you are both listening and understanding by reframing or repeating what is being said to you.
- Ask Clarifying Questions
It is better to be completely sure than to assume or misunderstand. Asking questions also shows that you engaged.
- Don’t Interrupt
Let your intern speak openly and express complete thoughts without interruption.
Nicki Sanders, The Packaged For Success Coach, is an Adjunct Professor with an extensive background in developing and managing internship programs. She is a skilled program manager, coach, trainer, and group facilitator who has packaged her Masters of Social Work degree and 20 years of work experience into Packaged For Success, a full service training and professional development company.
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