Saturday, September 26, 2015

Communicative Skills Goals

While I am generally speaking confident in my communication abilities, I have some areas that I have been working to improve. From the readings during the past few weeks, I realize that listening is an area that I would like to focus, especially in my chosen field of Public Policy and Advocacy.

The only surprise is how both of my husband/son team and a colleague evaluated and ended with similar results as mine. They really thought that I had great communication skills, and I realize I ought to trust my communication abilities. Having said that, I think I can use more time to reflect on the other party’s communication. As a result, one of my three communication goals for myself is:

1.     I will not engage in competitive or combat listening (Nadig, 2010) because I have frequently engaged in “crossed wires where the two people are not on the same wavelength” (Nadig, 2010). I often have a self-serving agenda to change other people’s minds (Nadig, 2010).

More difficult would be the following two goals:

1.     I will learn to reflect more while communicating. “We often notice when we reflect during a conversation that the meaning we have ascribed to what we’ve heard was not really what the speaker intended to convey” (Williams, n.d.). My listening style is analytical listening which includes “understanding, interpreting, and analyzing messages and which is useful in an exchange of information or ideas” (O'Hair, Friedrich, & Dixon, 2011). 

2.     I will strive to understand and respect other communicators before evaluating and responding to their messages (NCA, n.d.). This is based on NAEYC Code of Ethical Conduct, Principles 4.11 that states “When policies are enacted for purposes that do not benefit children, we have a collective responsibility to work to change these practices” (NAEYC, 2005). There is too many “intentional ignorance.” That means that when they really know something, they would choose to ignore the facts or the truth rather than to adjust their own paradigms about deaf children and their need for a healthy and visual/spatial language.


Nadig, L. A. (2010). Tips on effective listening. Retrieved from
National Association for the Education of Young Children. (2005, April). NAEYC code of ethical conduct and statement of commitment. Retrieved from
National Communication Association. (n.d.). National communication association: Advancing all forms of human communication. Retrieved from
O'Hair, D., Friedrich, G. W., & Dixon, L. D. (2011). Strategic communication in business and the professions. Boston, MA: Allyn & Bacon.
Williams, S. (n.d.). Listening effectively. Retrieved from


  1. Marla,
    I think it wonderful you have set these goals for yourself how do you plan to follow your progression? Is there a colleague you trust to be honest who can help remind you or keep you on track with your goals. In the past, when I know I did not feel comfortable to conduct a conference with a family due to a negative experience my colleague would take the lead. It is great to work in a buddy system it take the pressure off of you thus allowing you to honor the goals you have set for yourself. ck

  2. Marla,
    Beautiful post and very thoughtful processing points. Your self awareness is amazing and I envy you in that department. You seem to be such a peaceful soul to be near.