The communication style of every person is different in terms of how they share information and interact with each other. Today, we’ll discuss the four main types of communication styles in the workplace. When you’re familiar with all types of styles, then you’d be able to deal with any type of person that you come across with.
Misunderstanding and conflicts can happen at any time. Therefore, it is significant to be aware of different types of communication styles in order to interact with others effectively.
4 Types of Communication Styles
Communication style is the way how you react, act, and speak in various situations and circumstances. Some of the four main types of communication styles are as follows;
Passive Communication Style
It’s when passive speakers remain quiet without the intention of getting attention. They won’t act differently during the debate; make an assertion, and take a strong stance on their views. Usually, they don’t share their feelings and express their needs. It is difficult to know what type of help they need on the important project at what time, and when they’re feeling uncomfortable. Some of the tendencies of the passive communicators are as follows;
- Apologetic demeanor
- Soft voice
- Limited eye contact
- Attitude of easy-going
- Poor gesture
- Incapability to say no
If you have to work with a passive communicator, then you should keep in mind the following strategies in order to develop a good working relationship.
- Use Broad Language. Instead of answering the questions in simple “yes” and “no,” you should elaborate your answer and include a little explanation in it. You should remain patient and silent because it takes a while for passive people to think about things and respond.
- Ask for their Opinion. You should allow them a lot of time to think about things and compose their responses.
- Direct Approach. You should have a face-to-face conversation with them. Often, passive communicators feel comfortable in a private setting rather than in a formal group environment.
It’s significant to polish your communication skill if you’re a passive speaker. Whenever you find an opportunity and you feel comfortable in a particular setting, then you should speak out. You should ask for personal meetings if you don’t feel comfortable in the group setting. You should use the email channel for communication if you feel comfortable while writing rather than speaking. Therefore, you would realize that openly sharing your thoughts would create more opportunities for interacting with each other positively.
Aggressive Communication Style
Aggressive speakers often dominate the conversation at the expense of other people, and they frequently share their feelings and thoughts. They react to the situation and circumstances before thinking about it, and it negatively impacts the relationship and reduces their productivity in the workplace.
The aggressive communication style earns the respect of people in the leadership role. For those who respond better to the calm approach, the aggressive style is intimidating to them. However, some of its main signs are as follows;
- Maintaining eye contact intensely
- Employing aggressive gestures
- Exhibiting overbearing posture
- Invading personal spaces of other people
- Interrupting others when they’re speaking
You should keep in mind the following strategies while dealing with the aggressive communicators;
- When to Walk Away. You should know your limits when the aggressive speaker becomes over-demanding and dominating that is jeopardizing your limits. Their presence is impacting your growth and progress.
- Professional Conversation. You should keep the conversation professional, and point it away from the emotional and personal issues.
- Assertive and Calm. You should remain calm and don’t get intimidated by the aggressive speaker. You should follow the actionable approach while dealing with a certain type of issue.
It is difficult for people with aggressive styles to develop and maintain relationships both in personal life and the workplace. If you learn different types of communication styles and techniques, it would help you to manage your aggressive tendencies in order to lower the stress level in your life. In order to reduce the stress level, you can do so by engaging in healthy physical activities like exercises and meditation.
Passive-Aggressive Communication Style
Passive-aggressive may seem passive on the surface, but it has got aggressive motivational force driving its actions. Their words may seem agreeable on the surface, but their actions don’t always match up and align with their words whatever they’re saying.
Passive-aggressive speakers have the capability to manipulate the situation to their advantage and benefit. Some of them employ their style because they feel manipulated and powerless, but it isn’t always the case. Some of the strategies that passive-aggressive speakers employ are as follows;
- Silent treatment
- Presenting themselves with a happy face when they’re upset and sad
- Showing denial
- Employing sarcasm
If you have to work with passive-aggressive communicators, you would notice that they would undermine your efforts when you’re offering verbal assurances. Some of the techniques that you should keep in mind while dealing with them are as follows;
- Ask for Feedback: you should directly ask them for their feedback directly in order to have honest and clear communication
- Confronting Negative Behavior: confront them directly about their behavior, if the communication isn’t producing results, then you should keep trying
- Clear Request: your conversation should be clear without leaving any margin for confusion and misinterpretation
You should try to speak up your mind and thoughts openly whenever you find an opportunity if you have passive-aggressive tendencies. You should develop an honest and clear line of communication to make sure that you’re taking active steps to deal with the situation.
Assertive Communication Style
Assertive is a type of productive and respectful style of communication style in the workplace environment. Such communicators express their ideas and thoughts openly, but their behavior is always polite and respectful.
They’re always ready to accept a new type of challenge and they have got the courage to say “no” when it comes to it. Most importantly, they’re aware of their limits and boundaries, and they know how to protect them without getting defensive and aggressive.
When you’re dealing with the assertive communicator, you should realize their capability to make themselves and others feel comfortable. You should reach out to them because they have got the capability to establish productive discussion. They exhibit some of the following assertive behaviors;
- Making friendly eye contact
- A clear voice
- Good posture
- Expressing feelings and ideas in a healthier way
- The tendency of sharing and collaboration
- Expansive gesture
If you’ve got an assertive person in your team, then you should offer them leadership and encourage them to share their ideas openly.
Why Assertive Communication Style is More Effective
The reason the assertive communication style is more effective is that it follows the principle of mutual respect and diplomatic communication style. It also implies that you have the courage to respect yourself, share your feelings and thoughts, and take a stand for your interests. However, it means that you know the rights of others and works on them in order to resolve conflicts.
As the communication experts say that it’s what you say, how you say things matters. It provides you with an opportunity to deliver your message successfully.