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To Know Me Is to Persuade Me

There’s a pretty apparent observation when it comes to the art of communication and decision-making that most of us don’t really think about: people are more likely to listen to, be influenced by and persuaded by people who are most like them.

Now
before disturbing images of “Stepford Wives” come to mind, think instead of the
phenomenon of chameleons – transforming themselves (through the use of color)
to adapt to different environments.

That
is really the premise behind identifying the communication styles of
individuals in order to understand how to better interact with them, whether through
day-to-day conversations, sales meetings or major presentations.

There
are many different psychological assessments and personality testing exercises
which yield characterizations for communication styles.  We like this one, a shorter variation of the
well known Myers & Briggs methodology, which identifies four styles.  See which one best fits you (note:  it’s rare that we neatly fit into one of
these styles; most of us are a combination of two; rarer still are those who are
all four – only 10% of the population!)

  1. Driver – task-oriented, time conscious, is direct
    and decisive and largely impatient
  2. Expressive – the creative type; funny, talkative,
    entrepreneurial, likes to be the center of attention
  3. Analytical – (do we really need to explain this one?)
    wants data and more data, is process-oriented, slow to make decisions and asks
    a lot of questions
  4. Relater – people-oriented, looking to build a
    relationship and rapport, is very patient and likes positive attention

Identifying
an individual’s personality style is the first step to learning how they
communicate and make critical decisions so that you can understand, relate to
and respond in accordance to their behaviors and create a stronger connection.

Check
out this handy chart which provides a cheat sheet of sorts that helps you
easily recognize the communication style of people you work with, clients,
prospects, etc. and offers tips on how to get the most out of your interaction
with them – and more importantly, win them over.

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