In the past 4 years, I have directly worked with 100+ people, sold to 150+ customers, spoken to more than 100 investors and had a (40min+) conversation with a 1000 different people. I have been part of an engineering team, worked with Sales guys, led a marketing team, brainstormed with Product Managers, create processes for Operations, learned the hard way how to work with Designers. I have interacted with lawyers (very tough!), worked with accounting team, negotiated with vendors (that includes our previous chaiwalla) and a hundred other kinds of people.
What surprised me is that there is one thing that cut across all of these functions — Effective Communication.
What is communication?
As you can see there are multiple parts of communication. There is a sender, who has some intent, he/she creates a message, sends it over a medium (which has noise), the receiver receives the message, creates a perception and then gives feedback.
There are 2 components of a message, verbal message (which you know) and the non-verbal message (which is your body language and is equally important).
So, a seemingly innocuous process of 2 people talking is in fact highly complex one. There are multiple points of failures — sender may not send the right message, their body language maybe incorrect, there might be too much noise, the receiver might not be in the right state to receive the message.