The Art of Good Communication - It's All About The Wrapping
There are many forms of communication. Both verbal and physical communication play a big part on how we send information and how we receive information. I am not going to talk to much on verbal and physical communication, but I am going to talk about identifying communication as a receiver and a sender.
Regardless of whether a person is sending an email, text, or message verbally - the message is only as good as the person receiving it, well.. interpretes it. Interpretation relies heavily on how well you know and understand the person sending the message. As people become more comfortable with each other and depending on the circumstance, senders and receivers relax. Interpretation is not as fierce or negatively received when you are relaxed with another individual.
To facilitate an awareness of your staff that communicate with each other regularly, I recommend doing some fun activities. The first activity is a personality test to identify each person's personality and characteristics of their personality. Although these aren't perfect they do reflect to other individuals traits of a personality that need to be fostered.
Tip: The art of communication is learning how to adapt your communication to the person receiving your message. Not getting others to adapt to you.
There are many personality tests available online, just pick one and go with it. Once the results are in, have each person share amongst the team their results. By doing this, others will have a light bulb moment and communication styles will begin to click. If Mary's results show she is more introverted and prefers to short discussion that are on point, others will learn that this may be the better way of communicating with Mary. If Jamal's results show that he is more social and requires more praise, Mary will learn that when she communicates with Jamal - she needs to put in more effort, and Jamal knows that when he communicates with Mary - he can tone it down.
The Sender is responsible for creating a message and wrapping it in a manner that the receiver will interpret it as intended.
The Receiver is responsible for accepting the message and unwrapping it in a manner that the sender intended it to be received.
As the sender and receiver switch roles during a conversation, visualize the well wrapped message being passed back and forth. Mentally note how the person unwraps the message and interprets the message. The reaction will tell you how to proceed and change the wrapping on the next message.
Tip: A great way to take this to a new level for your organization is to identify the personality traits of all your employees. You will likely find that you have a majority personality type. Utilize the personality test when seeking new employees by having them test when completing their applications. This way you will have a better sense of how well the individual would fit in to a group, department, etc.
Sending an email or text requires more wrapping. Don't go overboard with words or exclamations, but be more cautious of the wrapping - especially if you do not know the person well. The highest incidents of misinterpretation are caused from email and text communication because the receiver cannot see your physical wrapping to help interpret the message. Therefore, make it easier for the receiver to unwrap your message as if you were standing right in front of them.
April Salsbury, MBA is a strategist, an analyst, an operational guru, a recognized leader and C-suite global healthcare executive with drive and focus for competitive markets. Co-host of The Business Forum Show and regular contributor to various business journals, she possess multi-functional and multi-national competencies with more than 15 years experience in business and healthcare. Her expertise is in invigorating revenue growth and infusing value of lean practices in growing companies through improvements to cash flow and operations management.
Fueling revenue, growth and profit, Salsbury & Co. is a consultancy firm focused on helping businesses and healthcare organizations achieve excellency. Our specialists have executive experience combined with deep functional expertise to provide our clients with services that drive real impact and results.
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