Frequently Asked Questions
FAQs about T.E.A.M. Communication Styles
How does knowing my Communication Style help me?
One crucial element of communication is understanding how others perceive you. Most of us think of ourselves as competent communicators. We’ve been doing it since we were infants! Yet, unknown to most of us, we have developed a particular style of communication, and many others have different styles. From someone else’s perspective, your communication can look flawed, annoying, or even rude. T.E.A.M. Communication Styles® teaches you more about your own style, how it’s viewed by others, and what you can do to bridge this gap.
How does T.E.A.M. help emotional intelligence?
Emotional intelligence means acting constructively in response to your emotions as well as those of others around you. T.E.A.M. provides a road map to how others would like you to interact with them in a variety of situations. Consider it an emotional intelligence cheat sheet!
Is one communication style better than the others?
No individual style is better than the others. However, there are differences that we may not appreciate at first. The key is to understand that there are differences and if you can adapt to bridge them, you’ll be a much better communicator.
What can I do to better communicate with other styles?
The key is to share your communication preferences with them, take a guess at their preferences and point out the natural gaps. Not right or wrong, just different. Then talk about what you each can do to meet somewhere in the middle. The key is to see that they are not trying to be annoying, they are just a different style than you. They may find your style annoying as well. Starting with the trust that you are not trying to be difficult to the other will make this conversation much more successful.
Isn’t it limiting to label people by a single style?
People are more than a simple style. In fact, many people are a blend of styles and can use different styles in different contexts. The value of identifying these styles is that it provides a snapshot of how different people adapt to a specific situation (your workplace). They can be one way in one aspect of their job and another way in a different component. People can also be one way at work, another at home. The assessment is designed to capture your primary style at work to give you a perspective of how others may see you, and how you might need to adapt to better connect with different styles.
What good is taking the assessment if others in my workplace haven’t taken it or don’t believe it?
First, you gain great insights and perspectives that you might not have otherwise seen. And you receive a roadmap for improving communication with people you find difficult. That’s real value! Then, you can share the model with your co-workers to provide a non-judgmental framework to talk from, and without any judgment, you can describe your behavioral preferences and theirs to highlight the differences. Then you can talk about what you each might do to meet somewhere in the middle. It’s crucial that you describe their behavior in a positive or neutral manner. Every style has strengths, even if you find theirs annoying!
My manager has all 4 styles, how do I respond?
This is not impossible, but it is very rare. Most people have a more focused preference for one or two styles, but it can shift in different situations. As you interact with your supervisor or manager, watch their behaviors closely, especially how they communicate and what they seem to expect from you. See if any focused preference emerges. If not, and they truly have all four styles, you’re in luck because any approach you take should be acceptable to them! Notice your behavior as you communicate and see what your manager seems most and least appreciative of. Then try to focus on what they most appreciate, but know you have some latitude since they’re OK with all styles.