Somewhere deep in the blue of the Pacific Ocean dwells the world’s loneliest creature, a whale colloquially known to researchers as ‘52’. No humans have ever knowingly laid eyes upon 52 and it is not known what species of whale 52 is: some experts think he is a Blue Whale and some think he is a Fin Whale. What we do know about 52 is his song. Whale song is famously heard over a huge geographical range and in these species, it is sung at subsonic levels which is not usually audible to human ears – usually between 10 and 25 Hz.  This makes whales superior remote communication experts!

However, the reason for 52’s name is because although he sings at 52 Hz – higher than any of the other creatures he shares the sea with- he is heard but he is not listened to. How does this relate to business?

Academic, Herbert Marshall McLuhan first conceived the term “global village”- meaning that the world has shrunk due to modern communications. However, like 52, just because we can communicate remotely does not mean that we are communicating effectively. Below are our top 3 tips to ensure that you not only heard, but are listened to:

It is not what you say but how you say it

Ensure you use a professional and calm tone in communications, whether over email, Skype or Facetime. This will help to avoid being misconstrued in anything that you are trying to say.

What are you trying to say?

Efficiency and effectiveness are keywords at every level in business. 64% of people choose to open an email based on the subject line alone so always use a relevant title. The body of your opening email should always explain why you are writing to your recipient in a concise and clear manner.

Who are you talking to?

When communicating to others, the difference between being heard and being listened to can be attributed to one major consideration; your audience. For example, a more formal tone may need to be used to remind a late payer of his invoice. A more relaxed tone may be fitting for a friend that you have known in industry for many years. Know your audience and tailor your messages to suit.

By taking the above points into account, you will be able to communicate more effectively and efficiently. This should only have a positive impact on your business relationships.

Original content written by Michelle Pearce, SmartPA Partner.