Have you noticed at work the communication climate or culture can change day to day? When things are going well, people are warm and friendly. When things are going poorly, people are cold and distance. Somedays you really believe you could cut the tension with a knife. It is a good idea to have some sure-fire strategies for maintaining a positive work culture and communication climate.

Here are some suggestions. Be descriptive and talk about what you see, rather than about what you think might be behind what you see through evaluation, directly or implied.

Approach conversation with a sense of equality, viewing the other person in the relationship on the same level, worthy and deserving of respect, rather than superiority, by verbally attacking someone’s abilities, talents, and self-esteem or nonverbal attacking others by rolling your eyes or making faces.

Demonstrate problem orientation and look at the value of the idea, regardless of the source, rather than control, communicating to another how they ought to behave, think, or feel.

Demonstrate spontaneity, by being honest in your reactions and communicating openness and trust, rather than strategy, demonstrated by giving out dishonest or distorted messages, withholding information, or making up stories.

Demonstrate empathy, and try to understand the other person’s point of view and identify with their emotional state with genuine concern, rather than neutrality, that’s an impersonal approach of detachment, noninvolvement, or indifference.

Demonstrate provisionalism, a willingness to wait and hear all sides of an argument with open-mindedness, rather than certainty, always being certain about your opinions, ideas, tastes, suggestions, demands, and allowing little room for alternatives.

When it comes to building a supportive communication climate, it’s what you say, how you say it, and probably what you look like when you say it, too. If you are conscious of, and conscientious with, your comments, the climate should be comfortable. Think of the communication climate at work just like the weather: warm and sunny, cold and dreary. The good news is that you control the thermostat. Everyday can be warm and friendly.

If you and your coworkers could benefit from an engaging presentation on emotional intelligence, contact me at kit@welchlin.com, and I will provide an interactive presentation that will refine your emotional intelligence.

If you need to find a keynote speaker, plenary speaker, breakout speaker, concurrent session speaker, seminar leader, or workshop facilitator who can deliver in-person, virtually, or via prerecorded session, Kit Welchlin, M.A., CSP, CVP, is a nationally recognized professional motivational speaker and author and can be found at www.welchlin.com or www.SeminarsOnStress.com.