WATCH: Are You Using The Right Style Of Communication?

This video is the next in the series about ‘Engagement from the Inside Out’.  And, today I want to talk about  ‘Communication Expectations’. So, this data is based on the research by Dr. Dan Harrison using the Harrison Assessments tool. And it’s really fascinating how communication can often go so wrong. And, this data can really help managers and people communicate with their colleagues. By looking at, what are the ‘Communication Expectations’? What are your expectations? And what are the expectations of the people you work most closely with?

“Wants Frankness”

Because, what this tool does is it looks at how much ‘Frankness’ do you want. And, how much ‘Diplomacy’ do you want. Compared to how much Frankness you have. And, how much Diplomacy you have. So, for example, this was a very interesting case, where a person, and it’s not unusual to have this, have a very high ‘Wants Frankness’ score. They want people to be direct with them. Straight to the point, straightforward, say what they say, say what you mean, just get to the point. And they’ve got a very high need for that. But, actually themselves, they’re not that Frank. They’re actually in fact, quite Diplomatic. They say things very tactfully. So, from as far as their behaviour is concerned, you’d see them as being very tactful. You might not expect them to ‘Want Frankness’, and their ‘Wants Diplomacy’ is actually very low. Not very low, sort of three-four. 

“Wants Diplomacy”

So really, for them, ‘Diplomacy’ isn’t important. But getting ‘Frankness’ is really important. And this is really fascinating because when I coached this manager, we were able to discuss how he needs to communicate with a lot of the people he works closely with, for them to be more frank with him. 

Because they see him as very diplomatic, and go, “Oh, you’re very diplomatic”. “You probably want people to be diplomatic with you”. And, that’s simply not the case. So, you need to think what is it that people need? And, if in doubt, ask them! Or else, do this report, and then find out what their communication styles are. What their communication expectations are. Because what we regularly find, is that a lot of staff often want more frankness than they’re actually being given by their manager. And yet a lot of managers are really concerned about being too frank with their people. But what’s happening is, they’re often not communicating effectively.  Because if we’re too diplomatic and not frank enough. We’ll come across as evasive. We’ll say a bunch of stuff, but they won’t understand exactly what it is that we mean.  

So, when it comes to Communicating Expectations.  

Stay Curious! 



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With best regards,

David Klaasen 

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©David Klaasen – 2014