"One can lack any of the qualities of an organizer— with one exception— and still be effective and successful. That exception is the art of communication."You can lack curiosity, irreverence, imagination, and indeed, organization and still be an effective and successful organizer.
"People only understand things in terms of their experience, which means that you must get within their experience. Further, communication is a two-way process. If you try to get your ideas across to others without paying attention to what they have to say to you, you can forget about the whole thing."Aristotle and Bandler back Alinsky up. Rhetoric has a great breakdown on tailoring your message to specific audiences, where The Structure of Magic & Frogs Into Princes have great models for checking your experiences against those of your target/audience/partner.
In other words, part of being a great persuader is being a great listener. To be a miserable, useless persuader, either ignore what other people are saying or swallow it uncritically. Great listeners don't just pay attention to what people are saying, but to what they're omitting, when they're bullshiting, etc.
Communication occurs when it impacts the other party. Note that this can also be negative responses; 'his eyes light up and he responds, 'you racist, sexist, son of a bitch, I hope you get raped to death by cats.' This is part of being a good listener - you're able to confirm that you got the desired response.
"I know that I have communicated with the other party when his eyes light up and he responds, “I know exactly what you mean. I had something just like that happen to me once. Let me tell you about it!” Then I know that there has been communication."
We'll look at more Communication strategies after the jump.