Are you confident and self-assured? Are you laid-back and easy going? Are you pushy?
Each of us has a unique way of communicating. The four most common communication styles are passive, aggressive, passive-aggressive and assertive.
Passive: Individuals who use the passive communication style often act indifferently, yielding to others. Passive communicators usually fail to express their feelings or needs, allowing others to express themselves.
Aggressive: Individuals who are more aggressive tend to issue commands, bluntly ask questions and rarely wait for the answers.
Passive-aggressive: this individual will appear to be passive on the surface, but is secretly harboring a grudge and will seek out other ways to be heard.
Assertive: these communicators can easily express themselves, clearly sharing their own ideas, needs and feelings, while taking into account the needs of others.
It is important to understand how you communicate and in what situations you use these types of styles. But what may be equally as important is how do the people you are dealing with communicate?
Certain styles will certainly work better together than others.
Imagine the lack of results from an exchange between an aggressive and a passive. Or a passive and a passive?
If I had to guess, we are all a mix of these different types of communicators, adopting the style to the situation at hand.
Watch for clues in the person you are speaking with – are they engaged with the conversation, nodding and genuinely interested? Are their arms crossed, eyes rolling and seem to be distracted?
Since communicating is as much about the telling as it is about the listening, being aware of these different types of communications styles can very helpful in business and personal conversations.