Do you feel like sometimes you struggle to be understood and be heard by your team?
Or, have you ever found yourself repeating the same instructions to a team member and they just don’t “get it”.
Your communication method is the key.
Business owners, more often than not, communicate with others using methods that work for themselves i.e, conversations,drawings, written notes passed on. The problem may be, that your preferred style of communicating may not be the other parties’ preferred style of learning. As an analogy for this; imagine a conversation between a Chinese person who only speaks Mandarin with a person who only speaks Spanish. Both can talk as much as they like but neither will understand the other.
If you want to be heard and understood, you need to communicate in their preferred learning style.
Do you know what each of your team’s style is? Do you even know your own? How do you communicate to be best heard by the individual and group?
What is the VAK testing tool…
The Visual-Auditory-Kinaesthetic learning styles model (abbreviated to VAK), provides a simple context to explain and understand your own learning style (and learning styles of others).
This is often tested through the use of a simple multiple-choice questionnaire to analyse a person’s communication and behaviour patterns and to determine how to interact with that person in the process of change. It is important to understand that each person has individual strengths and mix of styles.
The result of the questionnaire is a clear understanding of where the person fits and how they make distinctions concerning their environment. Both internal and external are represented in terms of the three VAK sensory systems: visual, auditory, and kinaesthetic.
VAK the 3 key learning style dimensions…
Visual– is about how someone learns and comprehends through seeing and reading. People who rely on their visual systems appear to run movies in their heads when remembering or storing information. So, when you communicate with Visual employees or colleagues, it’s best to make sure they see what you are expecting from them, or they see the steps to getting there.
Auditory– has listening and speaking as their dimension of learning. If people are primarily auditory, i.e. taking information through sounds, remembering may be like replaying a tape recorder, with original tones and dialogue.The best way for business owners to communicate with someone Auditory, is to make sure they hear words or instructions clearly.
Kinaesthetic– is about the dimension where someone learns by touching and doing. People who are primarily kinaesthetic respond to internal bodily feeling or tactile sense. They remember bodily sensations in recalling experiences. This style is often referred to as physical, tactile or ‘touchy-feely’. Showing examples or walking Kinaesthetic learners through steps is definitely the most effective way to communicate with them.
According to the VAK model, most people will possess a dominant, or preferred learning style, however some people will have a mixed and even balance of all 3 styles.
Therefore it is important to remember that these concepts and tools are aids to understanding overall personality, preferences and strengths – which is always a mixture in each individual person.
Why we choose VAK for business owners and teams…
The VAK model provides a different perspective for understanding and explaining a person’s preferred or dominant thinking and learning style and strengths, as well. The more perspectives you have, the better you see and understand your own preferences and learning styles, and the learning styles of employees, customers and peers.
Using this knowledge of ourselves and others and, specifically choosing our communication style mix to match the other person to ensure the highest chance of information transfer.
This knowledge provides an amazing insight into the people we work with. However, we must be cautious not to “box” people or become complacent about ourselves because we are not naturally suited to a particular style.