Communication is key—regardless of what your position is within a company. From the top down and from one team to another, if the information isn’t properly conveyed, tasks can quickly fall behind, and frustration can set in. To avoid miscommunication, leaders and managers need to be aware of people’s different communication styles.
Not everyone processes information in the same way, so it’s up to you as a leader to learn what works best for your team. This article will discuss tips for mastering communication at work—read on to learn more!
What Are Communication Styles?
Communication styles are the different ways that people use to process information. According to Psychologist and communication expert Albert Mehrabian, there are three main channels of communication:
Mehrabian’s research found that the majority of communication is nonverbal, which means that what you say only accounts for about
- Verbal channel: words (spoken or written)
- Vocal channel: tone of voice
- Visual channel: facial expressions and body language
Of these three channels, the nonverbal ones are usually the most important. This is because they provide context for the spoken words and can reveal much about what someone is thinking or feeling.
Why Is It Important to Understand Communication Styles?
As a leader, it’s important to understand communication styles to manage your team better. If you’re unaware of the different ways people communicate, you may inadvertently create tension or conflict.
For example, let’s say that you have a team of workers who are very analytical and like to process information logically. However, as their leader, if you were to give them a task and then immediately start asking for updates, they would likely feel overwhelmed. This is because they need time to process the information and develop a plan before giving you an update.
On the other hand, if you have a more creative and spontaneous team, they may become frustrated if you try to micromanage them. This is because they need the freedom to explore different ideas and solutions before they can give you a final product.
The bottom line is that understanding communication styles can help you to manage your team more effectively. It can also help to build trust and respect, as well as improve communication overall.
Main Types of Communication Styles
To effectively convey a message in a way the receiver will understand, it’s important to know the different communication styles. Adapting your language to these styles will ensure that your message will land and be received as you intended.
There are four main communication styles:
Passive communicators are people who don’t seek attention. Instead, it’s the opposite—they need to be tended to. As a result, these people usually struggle to express their needs and often end up feeling resentful. When communicating with a passive individual, it’s important to be direct and clear. Otherwise, they might misunderstand what you’re trying to say.
Aggressive communicators tend to be very direct and to the point. They often steamroll over others to get their point across. This can be off-putting to some people, so it’s important to be aware of how you’re coming across when you’re communicating with an aggressive individual. Be calm and assertive while maintaining professionalism throughout the entire conversation.
Passive-aggressive communicators are emotional and usually use sarcasm to express their true feelings. These individuals may seem agreeable, but their underlying message is often negative. For example, they may say one thing but mean another.
If you’re trying to communicate with a passive-aggressive individual, the key is to ensure your directions are clear. Also, jump on negative behavior before it has a chance to escalate.
Assertive communicators like to take control of the situation. They can make other people feel comfortable even when they’re disagreeing. This type of communication is usually the most effective, as it allows for open and honest dialogue. Assertive communicators are confident and usually have no problem speaking their minds.
If you’re talking to an assertive person, you’re likely already aware of how to communicate effectively with them and vice versa. However, it’s important to remember that everyone has a different communication style, so it’s important to adapt your style accordingly.
How Can You Master Communication at Work?
Now that we’ve discussed the different communication styles let’s talk about how you can master communication at work.
Here are a few tips:
- Be aware of your own style of communication and how others might perceive it.
- Pay attention to the communication styles of those around you and adjust accordingly.
- When in doubt, always err on the side of being assertive.
- Be clear, concise, and direct when communicating with others.
- Listen more than you talk.
- Seek out feedback and learn from your mistakes.
Use DATAMYTE to Promote Effective Communication at Work
If you want to enforce effective communication at work, consider using DATAMYTE. Our Digital Clipboard software allows you to create workflows and checklists to help you reinforce and implement best communication practices with your team.
You can also use the DataMyte Digital Clipboard to create audits and inspections to help identify areas of improvement. With our easy-to-use drag-and-drop interface, you can easily promote and enforce communication best practices in your organization.
Get started today—our team will show you how effectively the DataMyte Digital Clipboard promotes better communication in your organization.
By following these tips, you’ll be on your way to mastering communication at work in no time. Always remember that communication is a two-way street and that it’s important to be aware of the communication styles of those around you. With a little practice, you’ll be an effective communicator in no time.