Personal Narrative: Improving Communication Skills


I believe that there are several ways in which all of us, including myself, could improve on our communication skills. However, in this paper I want to focus mainly on my ability to work in a team. I can work fairly well in a team, as I actively try to participate and help out. My only problem is I can tend to be really shy when it comes to presenting my ideas. I have a fear that no one will like the idea and it will be rejected and I will become embarrassed. Due to this fear, I can tend to hold back some of the time when it comes to presenting a new concept to the group. Another thing, is I am afraid of constructively criticizing others because I’m afraid I will hurt their feelings or cause resentment. I believe that I can fix this
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and Elmhorst, J. (2011). Communicating at Work: SLCC Custom Edition. New York: McGraw Hill.
Canvas pages to accompany COMM 1010: Elements of Effective Communication. (20xx). Salt Lake Community College, Salt Lake City, UT. Available at

These two resources are great tools to help you improve your communication over many areas, including the problems that I presented earlier. They have diagnostics and suggestions for specific communication issues that can aid you in many different situations throughout various relationships. This way, you can use them to see what is wrong, and how to fix it.

While attempting to improve your communication skills, there is likely to be one or more constraints that will impede your progress. When it comes to the fear of giving and receiving criticism, one constraint that you could run in to is a particularly difficult team member, such as, even if said criticism is delivered in an appropriate and respectful way, they still take it personal and begin to start problems with you in your working environment. Another thing that could cause an issue is overbearing language. If a critical message is delivered in a non-delicate manner, whether it’s on purpose or not, it will very likely cause
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While criticism has a sort of fault-finding nature to it, it doesn’t necessarily have to trigger a defensive response. The way we deliver our critical messages makes a huge difference between our comments being accepted as constructive or being accepted as offensive. The best way to maximize your chances of your message being accepted as constructive is to strategically choose the best sender of the message, and paying attention to your delivery (Alder, Elmhorst, & Lucas p.117. Depending on who delivers the criticism can make a difference in how the feedback is taken by the receiver. Choose the most plausible candidate for delivering the message, because sometimes people are more comfortable receiving critique from one person compared to another. Also, make sure whoever delivers it has business in delivering it, and it’s appropriate to that person’s role in the team or organization, or whatever sort of group you’re in. Aside from who bears the criticism, you need to decide the best way to dress the message up. Limit your criticism to one thing at a time. If you bring up more than one thing that the person might be doing wrong, they are likely to feel overwhelmed and attacked, and will become defensive. Also, make sure whatever you are criticizing is an accurate critique. If you don’t have the facts straight, the other person will

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