#1 Reason Why Your Team’s Communication is Failing and How to Fix It Now!

Team Communication is modeled from the practice leader; however, did you know that 79% of practice owners say that they hired a leader based on experience or tenure in the field? Offices are filled with leaders that were never taught to lead. Having 20 years as an assistant, treatment coordinator, or front office coordinator doesn’t qualify a person to lead others.

Leaders spend approx. 80% of their time managing people vs. doing tasks. Given the statistic above, we hire people based on how well they can perform 20% of their job. What about the other 80%? Those tasks require people skills. People skills are the foundation of good communication.

If you are a leader and your team is struggling with communication you may not be optimizing your greatest asset (and expense!), your people. The great news is that you can fix it using a few simple techniques.

At Team Culture Works, we use DISC to help leaders improve team communication. DISC is an acronym for the 4 human behavior styles: Direct, Influencing, Steady, and Cautious. Once learned, you are able to apply DISC strategies to “Treat others how THEY want to be treated, not how YOU want to be treated.” The #1 reason why your team’s communication is failing is because you are treating them how YOU want to be treated instead of recognizing each team member’s unique personality style.

Before we can understand how to fix the issue, we have to understand DISC.
A DISC behavioral assessment measures and provides insight into four primary behavioral tendencies and emotions. It explores how these come together in a personal blend of style to create our DISC style. Team Culture Works offers one of the most comprehensive DISC assessments available. It takes approx. 30 minutes to complete and will generate a 52-page report detailing the person’s communication do’s and don’ts. (See the end of this article for details on how to get your assessment.)

Here is an overview of the four DISC behavioral styles:

D = Dominance or Direct
Decisive actions and decisions
Likes control; dislikes inaction
Works quickly
Low tolerance for feelings or attitudes
I = Influence
Spontaneous actions and decisions
Works quickly and excitedly with others
Poor follow through on tasks
May exaggerate and generalize
S = Steady
Slow to act and make decisions
Likes close, personal relationships
Dislikes conflict
Seeks security and belonging
C = Cautious
Makes careful, slow decisions
Likes organization and structure
Prefers to work independently
Asks may questions for accuracy

Once you’ve identified which quadrant a team member fits into, you can use that information to adapt your communication style to match their communication style. This will bridge the gap between misunderstanding and assumed emotions.

If you have a “D”, get straight to the point and don’t try to bring emotions into the conversation because it will only frustrate them. Speak quickly and don’t give too much detail. Make sure you give your “D” employees a deadline to complete tasks, they thrive under pressure and are motivated by achieving goals.

If you have an “I”, give them small tasks because they will get distracted. “I”s need to be spontaneous and they get bored easily. Their environment needs to be fun and exciting otherwise they shut down emotionally. “I”s love to talk and be the center of attention. Make sure to ask their opinion last when in a meeting or group setting otherwise they will be the loudest voice and other team members may agree out of convenience.

If you have an “S”, slow your speech and don’t pressure them to make a fast decision. Make sure they feel secure at all times and let them know how important they are to the overall success of the office. “S” types are people pleasers so make sure you ask their opinion first before sharing yours otherwise they will adopt your opinion and you’ll never hear how they really feel.

If you have a “C”, provide as many written details as possible about a task. Don’t get frustrated when they ask questions, it’s only because they want to get it right. “C” style employees need to process information. They may seem dismissive but are really just deep in thought. “C”s like to work alone and they don’t need much social interaction. If they don’t want to join the team for lunch, it’s okay!

When you adapt your communication to fit the needs of your team members, they feel valued, appreciated, and understood. Texas A&M students surveyed over 10,000 workers between the ages of 21 – 40 and 92% of them said that they would prefer to feel appreciated by their boss over receiving a raise!

Effective team communication is the single most important factor to your success. The largest business expense is its people. Optimizing their performance is the only way to the best return on that investment. And, the most impactful way to optimize performance is through proper communication.

At Team Culture Works, we coach teams to use DISC effectively through our culture camp program. Over the years we’ve seen many benefits in addition to improved communication. When your team learns how to identify DISC in others, case acceptance increases, more new patients are converted over the phone, and patients leave reviews centered around how nice they “feel” at the office.

If you would like to schedule your Team Culture Camp OR have your team take a DISC assessment, reach out to me: Tracy@TeamCultureWorks.com or call 214-755-0955. For more information about our team culture training solutions, visit www.TeamCultureWorks.com.

About the Author…
Tracy Civick is a speaker, author, and coach who focuses on strengthening corporate culture, empowering teams to practice effective communication, and creating profitable workplace environments. With over a decade of team development experience creating unity, compassion, and success, Tracy has a passion for teaching individuals how to elevate themselves both personally and professionally.

Published by Team Culture Works

We teach teams how to use DISC COMMUNICATION tools to improve communication, eliminate gossip at work, and increase productivity.

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