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6 Ways SIP Trunking Eases Up Your Business Communication

6 Ways SIP Trunking Eases Up Your Business Communication

SIP Trunking is an innovative phone system that allows businesses to replace traditional and fixed PSTN lines with PSTN connectivity that utilizes an online SIP Trunking service provider. SIP Trunking can provide numerous benefits to businesses, including cost-effective long distance calling and a major reduction in monthly service fees. While the cost savings and improved economy enjoyed by this system is certainly something to celebrate, SIP Trunking can also make phone systems easier to use.

1. Business Transparency

SIP Trunking allows businesses to run more transparently than with traditional phone systems. Businesses can be conducted from anywhere, regardless of time zone or location, making it a great solution for companies with remote workers. This allows customers to have maximum access to staff, and employees will be able to access corporate resources from anywhere in the world in order to save the business money. SIP Trunking also allows multiple devices to be registered using the same address, so one number can reach the employee at multiple locations.

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2. Easier Maintenance

SIP Trunks are virtual instead of physical systems, so maintenance is much easier than with traditional lines. Old trunks require expensive circuit and termination point installation, but a SIP trunk can be adjusted easily with a simple software configuration. This can lead to significant cost savings in terms of maintenance, but businesses will also save time, as there will be no need to have extensive conversations with technicians each time that a new phone line needs to be installed.

3. Improved Networking and External Calls

SIP Trunking offers several unique benefits that can work to improve business phone systems. SIP Trunking acts more like a network than simply a telephone-based technology. It works as a packet switched network line, similar to what you would use to connect two separate business locations. Sip Trunking can directly support converged data and voice networks, and you can run SIP trunks between multiple business locations in order to expand the geographic coverage of your data and voice network.

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Additionally, SIP Trunking can be used for external calling, as SIP trunks can connect a PBX phone system to your telephone provider. Depending on the coding scheme, bandwidth, and CODEC you use, you could handle as many as 23 external lines with SIP Trunk. If you utilize an Ethernet connection with your telephone service provider, you could support dozens of different phone lines depending on your available bandwidth.

4. Rich Communication

SIP Trunking has become a standard protocol for the use of VoIP, but it was originally designed to initiate all real-time communication types via the Internet, and not just voice. These types of communication include:

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  • Application collaboration and sharing on a single document
  • File transfers
  • Instant messaging and texting in real-time
  • Machine-to-machine communication in real-time
  • Presence, in order to see who is online and available
  • Video conferencing
  • Whiteboarding, drawing, and writing via a common virtual whiteboard

This variety of rich communication opportunities with SIP Trunking allows users to choose the best possible way to exchange ideas in order to work through their immediate situation.

5. Smarter Logistics and Integrated Data

SIP Trunking can support a variety of media formats that surpass just voice, including instant messaging and video. This means that businesses will have their costs streamlined, as they will be paying for one service rather than multiple data and voice plans to have all of their needs met. Businesses will have better data consistency with only using one system, and it will also be easier to train employees to utilize one system rather than to master multiple different technologies in order to do their jobs.

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6. Never Miss a Call

When a business owner misses a call, he or she may be missing out on a major opportunity that they cannot get back. With SIP Trunking, even when employees are working remotely or are on the road, calls can be automatically routed to a mobile device. The same situation is true if a phone line is busy or if the office is closed on a weekend or holiday. Business owners won’t have to worry about losing customers due to missed calls because the systems can be programmed to move a call to the next extension, send them to a mobile phone, or route them to a different location, phone number, or trunk group.

Changing a phone system over to SIP Trunking may be one of the smartest technology moves that a business can make. In addition to the significant cost-savings that companies will enjoy, SIP Trunking can make phone systems easier to use by providing rich communication opportunities, forwarding calls, reducing maintenance, and improving business transparency. While the system should be programmed and set up by an expert, after installation businesses will be prepared to enjoy a wealth of benefits.

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Published on May 18, 2021

How To Improve Listening Skills For Effective Workplace Communication

How To Improve Listening Skills For Effective Workplace Communication

We have two ears and one mouth for a reason—effective communication is dependent on using them in proportion, and this involves having good listening skills.

The workplace of the 21st century may not look the same as it did before COVID-19 spread throughout the world like wildfire, but that doesn’t mean you can relax your standards at work. If anything, Zoom meetings, conference calls, and the continuous time spent behind a screen have created a higher level of expectations for meeting etiquette and communication. And this goes further than simply muting your microphone during a meeting.

Effective workplace communication has been a topic of discussion for decades, yet, it is rarely addressed or implemented due to a lack of awareness and personal ownership by all parties.

Effective communication isn’t just about speaking clearly or finding the appropriate choice of words. It starts with intentional listening and being present. Here’s how to improve your listening skills for effective workplace communication.

Listen to Understand, Not to Speak

There are stark differences between listening and hearing. Listening involves intention, focused effort, and concentration, whereas hearing simply involves low-level awareness that someone else is speaking. Listening is a voluntary activity that allows one to be present and in the moment while hearing is passive and effortless.[1]

Which one would you prefer your colleagues to implement during your company-wide presentation? It’s a no-brainer.

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Listening can be one of the most powerful tools in your communication arsenal because one must listen to understand the message being told to them. As a result of this deeper understanding, communication can be streamlined because there is a higher level of comprehension that will facilitate practical follow-up questions, conversations, and problem-solving. And just because you heard something doesn’t mean you actually understood it.

We take this for granted daily, but that doesn’t mean we can use that as an excuse.

Your brain is constantly scanning your environment for threats, opportunities, and situations to advance your ability to promote your survival. And yet, while we are long past the days of worrying about being eaten by wildlife, the neurocircuitry responsible for these mechanisms is still hard-wired into our psychology and neural processing.

A classic example of this is the formation of memories. Case in point: where were you on June 3rd, 2014? For most of you reading this article, your mind will go completely blank, which isn’t necessarily bad.

The brain is far too efficient to retain every detail about every event that happens in your life, mainly because many events that occur aren’t always that important. The brain doesn’t—and shouldn’t—care what you ate for lunch three weeks ago or what color shirt you wore golfing last month. But for those of you who remember where you were on June 3rd, 2014, this date probably holds some sort of significance to you. Maybe it was a birthday or an anniversary. Perhaps it was the day your child was born. It could have even been a day where you lost someone special in your life.

Regardless of the circumstance, the brain is highly stimulated through emotion and engagement, which is why memories are usually stored in these situations. When the brain’s emotional centers become activated, the brain is far more likely to remember an event.[2] And this is also true when intention and focus are applied to listening to a conversation.

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Utilizing these hard-wired primitive pathways of survival to optimize your communication in the workplace is a no-brainer—literally and figuratively.

Intentional focus and concentrated efforts will pay off in the long run because you will retain more information and have an easier time recalling it down the road, making you look like a superstar in front of your colleagues and co-workers. Time to kiss those note-taking days away!

Effective Communication Isn’t Always Through Words

While we typically associate communication with words and verbal affirmations, communication can come in all shapes and forms. In the Zoom meeting era we live in, it has become far more challenging to utilize and understand these other forms of language. And this is because they are typically easier to see when we are sitting face to face with the person we speak to.[3]

Body language can play a significant role in how our words and communication are interpreted, especially when there is a disconnection involved.[4] When someone tells you one thing, yet their body language screams something completely different, it’s challenging to let that go. Our brain immediately starts to search for more information and inevitably prompts us to follow up with questions that will provide greater clarity to the situation at hand. And in all reality, not saying something might be just as important as actually saying something.

These commonly overlooked non-verbal communication choices can provide a plethora of information about the intentions, emotions, and motivations. We do this unconsciously, and it happens with every confrontation, conversation, and interaction we engage in. The magic lies in the utilization and active interpretation of these signals to improve your listening skills and your communication skills.

Our brains were designed for interpreting our world, which is why we are so good at recognizing subtle nuances and underlying disconnect within our casual encounters. So, when we begin to notice conflicting messages between verbal and non-verbal communication, our brain takes us down a path of troubleshooting.

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Which messages are consistent with this theme over time? Which statements aren’t aligning with what they’re really trying to tell me? How should I interpret their words and body language?

Suppose we want to break things down even further. In that case, one must understand that body language is usually a subconscious event, meaning that we rarely think about our body language. This happens because our brain’s primary focus is to string together words and phrases for verbal communication, which usually requires a higher level of processing. This doesn’t mean that body language will always tell the truth, but it does provide clues to help us weigh information, which can be pretty beneficial in the long run.

Actively interpreting body language can provide you with an edge in your communication skills. It can also be used as a tool to connect with the individual you are speaking to. This process is deeply ingrained into our human fabric and utilizes similar methods babies use while learning new skills from their parents’ traits during the early years of development.

Mirroring a person’s posture or stance can create a subtle bond, facilitating a sense of feeling like one another. This process is triggered via the activation of specific brain regions through the stimulation of specialized neurons called mirror neurons.[5] These particular neurons become activated while watching an individual engage in an activity or task, facilitating learning, queuing, and understanding. They also allow the person watching an action to become more efficient at physically executing the action, creating changes in the brain, and altering the overall structure of the brain to enhance output for that chosen activity.

Listening with intention can make you understand your colleague, and when paired together with mirroring body language, you can make your colleague feel like you two are alike. This simple trick can facilitate a greater bond of understanding and communication within all aspects of the conversation.

Eliminate All Distractions, Once and for All

As Jim Rohn says, “What is easy to do is also easy not to do.” And this is an underlying principle that will carry through in all aspects of communication. Distractions are a surefire way to ensure a lack of understanding or interpretation of a conversation, which in turn, will create inefficiencies and a poor foundation for communication.

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This should come as no surprise, especially in this day in age where people are constantly distracted by social media, text messaging, and endlessly checking their emails. We’re stuck in a cultural norm that has hijacked our love for the addictive dopamine rush and altered our ability to truly focus our efforts on the task at hand. And these distractions aren’t just distractions for the time they’re being used. They use up coveted brainpower and central processes that secondarily delay our ability to get back on track.

Gloria Mark, a researcher at UC Irvine, discovered that it takes an average of 23 minutes and 15 seconds for our brains to reach their peak state of focus after an interruption.[6] Yes, you read that correctly—distractions are costly, error-prone, and yield little to no benefit outside of a bump to the ego when receiving a new like on your social media profile.

Meetings should implement a no-phone policy, video conference calls should be set on their own browser with no other tabs open, and all updates, notifications, and email prompt should be immediately turned off, if possible, to eliminate all distractions during a meeting.

These are just a few examples of how we can optimize our environment to facilitate the highest levels of communication within the workplace.

Actions Speak Louder Than Words

Effective communication in the workplace doesn’t have to be challenging, but it does have to be intentional. Knowledge can only take us so far, but once again, knowing something is very different than putting it into action.

Just like riding a bike, the more often you do it, the easier it becomes. Master communicators are phenomenal listeners, which allows them to be effective communicators in the workplace and in life. If you genuinely want to own your communication, you must implement this information today and learn how to improve your listening skills.

Choose your words carefully, listen intently, and most of all, be present in the moment—because that’s what master communicators do, and you can do it, too!

More Tips Improving Listening Skills

Featured photo credit: Mailchimp via unsplash.com

Reference

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