5 Communication Styles In The Workplace
There are five main types of communication in the workplace, yet not all of them are effective. Let’s take a look at these styles and how you can adjust them around your co-workers or employees.
1. Assertive Communication
Typically, this communication style is the most effective in the workplace. An office leader that chooses to use this style of communication tends to be confident in their convictions. These leaders will not belittle or or put others down during any sort of talks.
An assertive communicator will never resort to manipulation or try to push the buttons of any co-workers or employees. These types of communicators will instead seek consensus and compromise through active listening and transparency.
Assertive Communication Tips:
- Stay calm, measured and positive.
- Always speak with confidence.
- Consider your needs as well as the needs of others.
- Give your employees open lines of communication.
- Ask for feedback.
- Be ready to problem solve.
2. Aggressive Communication
Aggressive communication can often become hostile and create a toxic work environment. These individuals firmly believe that their contributions to any conversation hold more value than other’s input. Even if their message is good, it will often get lost simply due to tone.
Fellow co-workers or employees are often left feeling belittled or intimated. In any office environment, this is not a communication style that will endear someone to their colleagues.
Aggressive Communication Tips:
- Switch your style by considering how it will make others feel and how they react to it.
- Tweak your body language.
- Change your point of view to help solve problems.
- Try to streamline your communication as much as possible.
3. Manipulative Communication
Manipulative leaders rarely say what they mean. They will instead say or do anything to influence the actions of others. Control is the main thing manipulative communicators are striving for. This style is often seen as patronizing and insincere.
This style will undoubtedly lead to altercations with individual employees or even a whole team. A manipulator has a clear vision and will do anything to obtain their goal. Employees will be turned off once they realize they have been manipulated.
Manipulative Communication Tips:
- Ask directly what you want from others.
- Adjust your style so your employees do not resent you.
- Refrain from engaging in any sort of emotional arguments.
- Remain patient and calm.
4. Passive Communication
There are two ways most people would describe a passive communicator: people pleaser and submissive. This communication style is easy going and conflict-avoidant. This style is not always effective, as the communicator may not be able to accurately articulate their thoughts.
Passive communicators often end up taking a backseat to more aggressive or assertive speakers. A passive communicator will avoid conflict at all costs.
Passive Communication Tips:
- Be confident in yourself.
- Do not simply become a “yes man”.
- Even though you are good at compromising, do not make everything a compromise.
- Stay direct in conversation.
5. Passive-Aggressive Communication
As likely guessed, this communication style borrows from both passive and aggressive communicators. The passive part shows on the surface, yet aggressive boils beneath all words.
While this communicator likely seems nice and easy-going, all talks are coming from a place of resentment or anger. This communication style has been proven to be very toxic in any workplace.
Passive-Aggressive Communication Tips:
- Figure out if you are trying to solve problems or simply lash out.
- Approach all conversations in a positive manner.
- Sympathize with others.
- Try to speak as assertively as possible.
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Michael Saletta is known as the “Master Facilitator” in guiding companies to drive their sales and business strategy. He is the founder and CEO of Saletta Leadership, LLC and Leadership Partners, LLC, consulting companies dedicated to developing leaders, growing sales, and aligning team performance. Change your business by contacting Saletta Leadership today!