Do you know what type of communicator you are?

Do you know what type of communicator you are?

We all know how we should communicate to get the best from business opportunities whether it be client meetings, networking, those brief encounters at exhibitions or even riding the lift.

Business opportunities are everywhere, but you can win or lose them by using the wrong form of communication. Whether we like it or not, our communication style will typically be one of three;

Passive, aggressive or assertive.

Assertive communication is the happy medium where your communication will open doors for you.

Are you an aggressive or passive communicator?

Answering the question relies heavily on you being self-aware and honest with yourself – have you lost pitches? Do you struggle to get your point across? Do you often find your conversations becoming heated and debate like?

Typically, aggressive communicators will find that they can be misunderstood and even find themselves offending others easily through judgements, strong opinions and arguments.  In contrast passive communicators may be easily offended, often being mistaken for weak people and being undervalued.

An assertive communicator will possess both traits and blend them together to ensure that both parties take something from the conversation.

To be an assertive communicator, try some of the following;

  • Be present
    • Give your full attention. Whether your distraction is your phone, or colleagues – if you’re distracted, your communication becomes hesitant, unclear and you will not be listening properly. If something has happened prior to distract you, take a moment to re centre your thoughts and return to it afterwards so that you are focusing on the task in hand
  • Don’t be a “people pleaser”
    • This doesn’t mean just saying ‘no’, instead politely decline and explain why. Backing up your negative response with reasoning helps others to understand why you said ‘no’
  • Negotiate
    • A passive communicator will accept a negative response and walk away. Avoid doing this, try to explore other options instead, and using clear, concise communication meet a solution that works for you
  • Body language
    • Be aware of your body language, keep it open, maintain eye contact and try mirroring behaviour to receive a positive reaction
  • Tone
    • Keep your tone relaxed, watch the speed at which you talk – a conversation is neither  a sprint or a marathon. Keep it flowing back and forth without hurrying or hesitating.

Will it make a difference?

Assertive communication will lead to situations being less stressful. By communicating aggressively you can appear threatening in your behaviours, and passive communicators will often feel uncomfortable. Removing the negativity will lead to positive exchanges, results and attitudes. People do business with those that they trust, passive communicators will often not appear solid enough to get the job done, it’s important to be mindful of this if you wish your interactions to be successful.

We communicate every moment of every day, but with more and more communication becoming electronic we risk losing the art of face to face conversation. So take your time to practice your new techniques ahead of the next time that you really need your communication skills to seal a deal.

We’re sure that through listening, using open body language, being mindful of yourself and being present whether it’s a meeting, networking event or even social occasions you’ll get improved results from your communication.

For information on upcoming networking events, where communication is key call Avanti on (08000) 388 799