Do you know how your communication style is perceived? To progress in your career it is vital that you communicate in an assertive way. It is important to understand how your communication style is interpreted by others to avoid miscommunication and misunderstandings. The goal is communicate with assertion and avoid an aggressive, passive-aggressive or passive style of communication.
Use the following checklist to see how you communicate over all or to evaluate a particular exchange you’ve had to see how you can improve on your communication style.
__You choose and make decisions for others.
__You are brutally honest.
__You are direct and forceful.
__You are self enhancing and derogatory.
__You’ll participate in a win-lose situation only if you’ll win.
__You demand your own way.
__You feel righteous, superior, controlling later possibly feeling guilt.
__Others feel humiliated, defensive, resentful and hurt around you.
__Others view you in the exchange as angry, vengeful, distrustful and fearful.
__The outcome is usually that your goal is achieved at the expense of others. Your rights are upheld but others are violated.
__Your underlying belief system is that you have to put others down to protect yourself.
__You allow others to choose and make decisions for you.
__You are emotionally dishonest.
__You are indirect and self denying.
__You are inhibited.
__If you get your own way, it is by chance.
__You feel anxious, ignored, helpless, manipulated, angry at yourself and/or others.
__Others feel guilty or superior and frustrated with you.
__Others view you in the exchange as a pushover and that you don’t know what you want or how you stand on an issue.
__The outcome is that others achieve their goals at your expense. Your rights are violated.
__Your underlying belief is that you should never make someone uncomfortable or displeased except yourself.
__You manipulate others to choose your way.
__You appear honest but underlying comments confuse.
__You tend towards indirectness with the air of being direct.
__You are self-enhancing but not straight forward about it.
__In win-lose situations you will make the opponent look bad or manipulate it so you win.
__If you don’t get your way you’ll make snide comments or pout and be the victim.
__You feel confused, unclear on how to feel, you’re angry but not sure why. Later you possibly feel guilty.
__Others feel confused, frustrated, not sure who you are or what you stand for or what to expect next.
__Others view you in the exchange as someone they need to protect themselves from and fear being manipulated and controlled.
__The outcome is that the goal is avoided or ignored as it cause such confusion or the outcome is the same as with an aggressive or passive style.
__Your underlying belief is that you need to fight to be heard and respected. If that means you need to manipulate, be passive or aggressive, so be it.
__You choose and make decisions for you.
__You are sensitive and caring with your honesty.
__You are direct.
__You are self-respecting, self expressive and straight forward.
__You convert win-lose situations to win-win ones.
__You are willing to compromise and negotiate.
__You feel confident, self-respecting, goal-oriented, valued. Later you may feel a sense of accomplishment.
__Others feel valued and respected.
__Others view you with respect, trust and understand where you stand.
__The outcome is determined by above-board negotiation. Your rights and others are respected.
__Your underlying belief is that you have a responsibility to protect your own rights. You respect others but not necessarily their behaviour.
If you have comments or suggestions on this article, please start a discussion.
Copyright 2007 Joni Rose of Career Minded Consulting Services. All rights reserved. Any unauthorized use will constitute an infringement of copyright. Please contact Joni Rose for reprint permission.