ABZ’s of Communication for PMs and Techies… L (part 1): 3 Learning styles

With communication accounting for over 80% of a project manager’s time, the importance of GOOD communication cannot be overlooked.  Good projects begin with good communication!

L= 3 Learning styles

Have you ever tried explaining a new concept to someone and they just don’t understand? Then someone else walks in, gives the same explanation, and the other person gets the concept right away?

What probably happened was a disconnect in learning styles.  You  explained the concepts in YOUR learning style and the new person communicated in their learning style which happened to be the same style as your listener.

There are three dominant learning styles:

  • Visual (learning by seeing);
  • Auditory (learning by hearing);
  • Kinesthetic (learning by doing).

Visual Auditory KinestheticWhile we all use a mixture of the various learning styles, we tend to gravitate to one style when we communicate with others. One clue to your own or other’s dominant style is in the words we use:  Visual people may say “I see what you mean” and describe things with colors, shapes and visual clues. Auditory learners may say “I hear what you are saying”, while kinesthetic learners often express things in terms of feelings such as “I know how you feel.”

The type of learner you are provides clues to how we need to focus our communications with others. Knowing that there are 3 learning styles and that we prefer one particular style tells us that there are two learners who may not as easily connect with how you communicate.

Any planned communication should aim to reach all three types of learners through a variety of media:  written (visual), spoken (auditory), and discussed (kinesthetic).

Food for thought the next time you think that a single email will suffice in your communication plans.  Ensure that everyone is included by addressing all three styles of learning and you’ll find the commitment and receptivity of your audience increases.

To your successful projects!


Carol Dekkers
email: dekkers@qualityplustech.com

For more information on northernSCOPE(TM) visit www.fisma.fi (in English pages) and for upcoming training in Tampa, Copenhagen, Dusseldorf, Helsinki and other locations in 2010, visit www.qualityplustech.com.


=======Copyright 2010, Carol Dekkers ALL RIGHTS RESERVED =======


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