5 Tips to Master Communication in the Workplace6 min read

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Let me take a moment and wish everyone a Happy Valentine’s Day. With that in mind, what’s one thing we can do to improve our relationships, whether it be at home or in business? The one thing we could do is to improve our communication. A breakdown in communication is usually what takes couples or an entire organization down. On the flipside mastering, your communication can take relationships and organizations to the next level.

I’m going to share five ways to master your communication. Number one, especially in business, is we need to understand behaviors. We need to use behavioral assessments. The one I use is the DISC. Understand that there are four behaviors. Each behavior is different. They want to be communicated to in their style, not ours.  

Let’s begin with the D. D’s are very direct people. They’re task-oriented. They don’t want to fluff around with stories. They want to get to the point. So, when we’re talking to a D, we need to be brief and get to the point in our communication.  

I’s are influencing. They’re more friendly as they’re people persons. They want to establish rapport. We really need to be complementary to a high I and be friendly in addition to sharing our views while respecting there’s.

S’s are reserved. They’re steady. They like structure. They don’t like confrontation. We immediately need to slow down our speed and tonality when we talk to a high S. And C’s are extremely analytical. Think of a CPA as they’re all about numbers, statistics, data, structure, perfection. You need to be prepared for a C to be analytical in asking questions in the conversation. You need to be prepared to be on your A-game to answer those questions.  

Once you get familiar with how to adjust your behavior, your speaking, and your communication to those four different styles, you’ll be much better off in creating a win-win engagement for everybody.

Number two, you need to understand the VAK, visual, auditory, kinesthetic. Visual, what you see. Auditory, what you hear. Kinesthetic, what you feel. There’s one important factor we need to understand in the communication of this, which is the auditory component. Only 20% of people are auditory, which means if you’re you’re conducting a meeting with 10 people on a Monday, and you tell all 10 of them what you need by Friday. However, you don’t ask them to repeat it back. You don’t ask them to write it down. You don’t ask them, “Okay, what exactly are we going to have on Friday when we sit down again?” If you don’t, on Friday, if only 20% are auditory, which means only 20% are truly listening. How many going to have that item completed on Friday? The answer is only two of the 10.

By not knowing this statistic, how much frustration and misunderstanding does that create in an organization? You, as a leader, ask people for something, and they don’t deliver. You’re thinking, do they not have ownership? Do they not take accountability? Are they not listening? Do they even care? Understanding, that eight out of 10 people are not auditory, and they’re actually not listening, forces you to change your approach.  

What’s a better way? You could ask them to repeat it back. “What action steps are we going to take? Please repeat back exactly what we’re going to have done by Friday. Perfect. Thank you. Have a great week.”

Number three, be present. Yes, be present. Very simple. How many conversations have you had that you were thinking about what you had to do next? We’ve all done it. If you’re a leader of an organization and you’re giving instructions to somebody on your team, however, you’re in a rush and you’re thinking about something else, what you have to do next, and where you just came from, they’re not going to get the proper information, because you actually weren’t present in the conversation. We spend so much time going back again and again and again, telling people the same things, because we just weren’t present in the conversation the first time. This is killing productivity in the workplace.

Number four, remember that it’s just a conversation. So many people get wrapped up in speaking to different people about certain things. They actually already have a story in their head of how they might react or what’s going to happen. Unfortunately, we create sabotage before we even start the conversation. As I said, it’s just a conversation. It’s two people sitting down, having a conversation.  

How do we take number four and take it to the next level? By implementing number five, ask permission. Is it okay if I speak freely? Is it okay if I ask you a question? Always ask for permission when you’re in a conversation, and by asking permission and getting them to say, “Yes,” it takes their guard down. It opens up the conversation. They’re now open to receiving what you have to say.

There are five ways to increase your communication because, in business, this is something we need to master, because if we don’t, it’s going to cost us stress, time, energy, and money, and that’s something we all can’t afford. So, I encourage you, to master your behavioral assessments, understand different behaviors, and shift accordingly. Understand that eight out of 10 people really aren’t listening, because they’re not auditory. Number three, be present in the conversation you’re having. Number four, understand it’s just a conversation. And number five, always ask permission to speak freely.

I trust this has been valuable. Hope this helps you with your communication. If you need any assistance, please reach out to me. I’ll be happy to come into your organization and take you and your team to a whole new level of education and communication.  

COACH MICHAEL DILL is an Award-Winning Certified Business Coach, global speaker, and published author. He is a proud Action Coach Franchise partner as well as the President of Power & Ice Wealth Creation a strategic leadership company that works with business owners, leaders, teams, and entrepreneurs to both develop a systematized and structured organization while accelerating their mindset, efficiencies, and effectiveness to grow both personally and professionally to achieve extraordinary results. He brings more than 40 years of business and entrepreneurial experience in his leadership, team training, and mentoring practice. Businesscoachmichaeldill.com