Updated: Aug 30, 2018
What is one of the most important skills a leader must have, or must master?
What is the key to a successful relationship, both professionally and personally?
How can you effectively lead your team and business to success?
When it comes to management and productivity, those are some of the most common questions, and they often lead back to the same answer – communication.
Communication is innate within all of us, and is also a skill that can be exercised, trained and moulded.
The way we communicate is shaped by our culture and society, social norms, language, our workplace, music and technology. It’s also affected by our characteristics and our personalities, and is reflected in our communication style.
You may be aware of your communication style, but what about its strengths, its weaknesses and how it may impact the people around you, both in and out of the workplace?
We’ve complied some information on four diverse communication styles. Reflect on which style you relate best too, the style you aspire to practice or whether you can improve on specific elements.
An analytical communicator bases their knowledge sharing and dialogue on data and patterns, using specific and diplomatic language to avoid emotional anchors. Your logical unwrapping of issues allows you to remain objective, regardless of the situation or people before you, and you often exercise your expertise when giving directions or guidance. You may find it challenging to pick up on body language, your team may not approach you with personal manners and you may struggle to develop rapport with stakeholders.
A communicator that is driven by an overall vision and uses intuition to both listen and talk to people may be known as an Explorer. You focus, and remind others to focus, on the bigger picture, so you encourage others to be open and follow their instinct. You may guide others and complete tasks based on how the ‘means justify the ends’, so your approach to others is flexible and you think outside the box. However you may lack patience – whether it’s with processes, details or even people.
Inspectors are functional communicators, who are very detail oriented and believe repetition, in dialogue, guidance or providing instructions, leads to ultimate understanding. Thus, your approach to communication is to listen first and take action when needed, observing people before you approach or interact with them. You are sought after to facilitate situations or implement solutions, however, you may find it challenging to engage creatively or innovatively with others.
If you utilise emotional language, rely heavily on your connection with others, and act on both their body language and the meaning behind their words, your communication style is the Connector. This enables you to build and maintain relationships regardless of the situation or challenges faced in the workplace, and building rapport with stakeholders is one of your strengths. As you are driven by how people feel, you may engage in bias behaviours or make irrational decisions.
There are many communication styles, and is imperative to acknowledge that some cross over, or we may cross over some of them, depending on the situation or context. Also, no style is particularly better than the other, but some styles maybe more effective based on your audience and intentions.
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