About the Author
Effective communication is critical for a successful and productive work environment. Not only does it improve relationships, productivity, and decision making, but it also minimizes misunderstandings and conflicts.
To explore this concept a bit more, we talked with our own Lisa Armstrong, Senior Director of Global Learning and Development at ECI. Lisa not only has more than 25 years of experience in sales, sales leadership, and leadership and development, but is also a small business owner herself! Her approach to leadership and training continues to inspire us, especially when it comes to adapting the way we communicate as managers and peers.
So, let’s get into it…
Lisa Armstrong (LA): There are two mistakes that I often see people making when it comes to communication:
LA: The DISC style basically tells you which of the 4 communication styles you are. It does not measure values and beliefs; it simply helps you assess people’s natural behavioral tendencies. Each letter stands for a different style:
Most of us are a blend of 2. It is best to look at one’s natural tendencies to determine DISC style. If you are curious what your style is, here is a helpful link for you to take the DISC Assessment Test.
LA: It is all about identifying where people are and trying to adapt our style. It is best to not make assumptions, but instead watch for patterns. For example, it is dangerous to assume one’s DISC style based on the job they do. Instead, look for patterns in their communication. Are they quick to make decisions or slower? Do they need more details or prefer to keep it big picture? Does this person talk about people and feelings more or process and facts? When we pay attention to these things, we can adapt our style to meet the needs of others.
LA: The best thing to do is start with 1 or 2 key relationships you have whether it is as a manager or a peer. Pay attention to how the person communicates.
Picking up on these things can help us communicate more effectively with others. Start small and just pay attention. It is easy to adapt to someone else when you are really paying attention to their communication tendencies.
LA: We train all our salespeople and our company leaders on DISC. We also talk a lot about the importance of non-verbal communication and watching your tone. Between non-verbal, body language and our tone of voice, that accounts for 93% of how people receive our communication (only 7% are the words we choose). Being present with our non-verbal communication is a great way to demonstrate respect and to be a better listener. When we are looking around, glancing at our watch, etc., people will assume that they are not important.
LA: While I have been in my current Global Learning and Development role at ECI for five years, I’ve been teaching these types of concepts for 20 years.
I absolutely love helping people be a better version of themselves. I truly believe in the concepts I teach around effective communication skills, emotional intelligence, building trust, and so much more. I have always tried to stretch myself to grow and get better and that is what I am inspired to do for others.
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About the Author