Communication: The First Thing We Learn, The Hardest Thing To Carry Out.
Have you ever wondered why it is so hard to communicate sometimes?
Maybe you are like me and think you’ve communicated well, but haven’t. Personally, when that happens, I get frustrated because the outcome was not what I expected. That leads to tension and can have a negative outcome.
Communication takes more than just putting words together. It involves body language, expressing thoughts, eye contact, etc. The part we don’t often consider is the person on the receiving end of our communication. Are they available, ready, and willing to receive our communication? How will their perceptions color our communication once it is received?
While we were at the Young and Beginning producers Conference, Karl from The Customer Insights Team presented on 4 different communication or behavioral styles. After taking the quiz, called the DiSC, to determine which communication style I had, the results described me to a “T”! Daddy O took the quiz as well and it was so interesting to finally realize what made each of us “tick”.
Maybe this will help you too!
Below are the 4 basic communication styles as described by the DiSC.
See if you can figure out which communication style fits you best!
Dominance – People who fit into this category seek to shape their environment by overcoming opposition and challenges to accomplish results.
These folks are interested in getting immediate results. They are accepting of challenges. It is easy for them to take authority and they often question “status quo”.
The environment that they prefer is one of power and authority, direct answers, opportunity for individual accomplishment, and freedom from controls and supervision.
Their strengths include being able to make decisions when no one else wants to, not being afraid to confront trust issues or situations and excepting change as a personal challenge.
Their limitations are that they may come across as unapproachable, insensitive and inpatient. They may try to get the team moving before it is ready.
Influence – These are people who seek to shape their environment by influencing or persuading others.
Influencers tend to make a good impression, be articulate and optimistic. They love entertaining, participating in a group and creating a motivational environment.
Their preferred environment is in a place of popularity, social recognition, freedom of expression, group activities outside of their job, and where freedom from control and detail prevails.
The strengths of an influencer are that they are available for others, giving of his/her time easily. They are good at inspiring others and spreading enthusiasm and positive attitude. They easily give positive feedback to others.
Their limitations include being disorganized, coming across as superficial in his or her approach, and lacking follow through.
Steadiness – These folks seek to “cooperate with others within existing circumstances to carry out their tasks.”
The person with steadiness as their communication style is wonderful at demonstrating patience, developing specialized skills, performing in a consistent manner, being a good listener, and showing loyalty.
Their preferred environment is where “status quo” is maintained, there are predictable routines, minimal work infringement on home life, sincere appreciation, and there is minimal conflict.
Their strengths include being a good team player, showing empathy and sensitivity to the needs of others, and being methodical and good at preparing meeting agendas and minutes. They are a good listeners and easy to get along with.
Their limitations include being indecisive, indirect, and resistance to change.
Conscientious - people with these communication tendencies “seek to work within existing circumstances to ensure quality and accuracy.”
They tend to concentrate on key details, thinking analytically, using systematic approaches to situations, and checking for accuracy. They use indirect approaches for conflict.
Their preferred environment is one where they can control the factors that affect their performance, performance expectations are clearly defined, and values are based on quality and accuracy. They appreciate a reserved business-like atmosphere and recognition for specific skills and accomplishments.
Their strengths are that they are thorough, follow standards accurately, give attention to detail, and are diplomatic and accurate.
The conscientious person's limitations can include being overly concerned with perfection, appearing aloof and hampering the creativity of others with their desire to stick to the rules.
Now you might think, "Well, I don't just fit into one category!"
You are right!
Often, a person's basic communication style is "influenced by life experiences, education, and maturity". You may even be more of one style in specific settings like work, but another at home.
"When you understand your basic communication style you become more effective in working with others. When you understand another person’s communication styles, it can help you understand their priorities."
Do have an idea of what your communication style might be? What about your spouse? Co-worker? Sister? Best Friend?
My communication style is “Influencer”, with a bit of “Steadiness”. I’m all about encouraging people and seeing them grow. I love motivating others and creating a supportive environment! If you have spent time on The Rural Sisterhood page or are part of The Wholehearted Rural Sister’s Community, you probably aren’t surprised! I will admit I am not the most organized person. In fact, focusing on the details “squelches” my enthusiasm, so I try to stay as far away as possible. ? Not totally, but kind of, if I’m being honest. Once I make a decision, I want it to happen “yesterday”. “Let’s just do it and not worry about hashing out the details.” ?
Daddy O’s style is a “Conscientious Communicator”. He is all about analyzing the details. He thinks through his decisions and plans of action before doing them. He is organized in the way he approaches decision making and then acting upon the decision.
These differences in communication styles are why we drive each other crazy at times, but can complement each other quite well too!
I’m sure you’ve seen a quote similar to this before:
Working cows as a couple can be an enlightening experience. For us, it is a good example of our communication styles. Daddy O has had more experience than I have, for one thing, but he sees the goal and the details of how to get the animals to that goal. Me? I don’t see the details like he does, so I usually need more detailed instructions. I’m focused on getting the girls involved, feeling like I’m am a valued participant, and how we can move the animals with as little stress to them and ourselves as possible.
Knowing what I now know about my communication style and Daddy O’s communication style, I can explain myself and my reasoning more effectively. I can also understand his point of view on matters we are discussing and understand his priorities around them.
I hope this post has helped you in some way. Understanding the differences in communication style made so much sense to me, that I just had to share it with you too!
What do you think is your communication style? Have you seen it change across time?
Have you ever taken a quiz about communication? What did you learn?
I'd love to hear your experience and insight! Feel free to comment below! I love hearing from each one of you!
To read all about our experience going to the Young and Beginning Producers Conference, click here!