As most in management know, one of the most\n\ncritical elements to succeed in business today is to communicate\n\neffectively, both inside and outside the organization. While many\n\nsenior executives and managers pride themselves on their self-perceived\n\ncommunication skills, it is also no secret that many recipients of\n\nthose communications do not feel the same way.\n\nJust as there are many forms of communication, there also are\n\nvarious tones that can go along with the messages. Sometimes what is\n\nultimately communicated has nothing to do with the actual words used.\n\nIt could be a look, a perception or a statement not made that tells more than the words used. In short, the tone of what is communicated can be as critical as the message.\n\n\n\n\n\nSo here is a shorthand look at some of the various tones of\n\ncommunication that executives and managers may be sending between the\n\nlines of the real message they intend to deliver. Just the facts. There is nothing flowery in this\n\ndata\/information-based kind of communication, where only facts are\n\nstated without context. The recipient gets the data, but not\n\nnecessarily the relative importance. Each recipient gets to create his\n\nor her interpretation of the meaning and import.\n\nAngry eyes. The listener can tell by looking at your eyes\n\nthat this message matters big time. However, it is too easy to\n\nmisinterpret that the speaker is angry about not getting that promotion\n\nwhile delivering a totally unrelated message to someone else.\n\nBetween the lines. We hear what was said but know deep down\n\nthat the speaker doesn\u2019t really mean that. Everyone knows the real\n\nmeaning of an announcement that a "valued" member of the team is\n\nleaving the company to "pursue other interests." Translation? Fired.\n\nCurt. Maybe the boss doesn\u2019t buy in to this communication and\n\nis just following orders. A curt tone leaves the listener guessing.\n\nGeneric. This tone describes the way the boss generally\n\ncommunicates. These messages usually contain nothing of note. They can\n\nbe ignored like all the rest.\n\nThe big one. This is the memo that talks about all you\u2019ve\n\nbeen through together and the tough times coming during the next year.\n\nTranslation? Dust off the resume; a hit list is being made.\n\nThe joker. Some messages contain so many genuinely funny\n\ncomments that it\u2019s difficult to tell when the person is really not\n\nkidding.\n\nPals\u2019 talk. When messages always treat subordinates like\n\nbuddies rather than subordinates, the communications don\u2019t always carry\n\nthe necessary weight. It can be a shocking surprise when the really\n\ntough message has to be delivered. Suddenly, the pal is no longer a\n\nfriend.\n\nNo matter what message an executive or manager is attempting\n\nto communicate, it is important that the method of delivery be taken\n\ninto consideration. And after the communication, it is just as\n\nimportant to doulbe-check with the recipients about what it is they\n\nheard, as opposed to what was said.