By: Dr Alan Rae
Founder – Howtodobusiness.com
Better communication is central to driving a business forward. You need an effective story to resonate with and inspire those you work with – whether as co-workers and staff or as customers. If you tell it in words that take into account how they think and what their values are you are more likely to get a result.
One of the hard truths you face as a business manager and owner is that not everyone thinks like you. It’s helpful to know that how others process information so that you can flex your messages or management style – without of course detracting from the integrity of your message.
One way of doing this is my making use of the Brain Technologies suite. This will allow you to map your own thinking style and values system according to a couple of powerful models developed by Dudley Lynch.
The BrainMap deals with thinking styles based on left vs right brain and a preference for thinking vs action. This deconstructs into 4 main thinking styles that you might frequently meet – visionaries, accountants, entrepreneurs / salesmen and team players.
Visionaries are characterised by exploring, accountants by control, entrepreneurs and salesmen by pursuit of objectives and team players and guardians like to maintain the status quo. If you understand these dynamics then it’s much easier to motivate your team and write good marketing copy.
If you want to know a little more you can see a quick overview here
People of course are not simply motivated by how they think. Values systems play a major role too. The Graves Spiral is a useful way of assessing what values systems people use. Graves was a contemporary of Maslow’s who was interested in what comes after self-actualisation. He identified that people may be motivated by primarily individualistic or primarily group considerations. In addition as individuals develop they are able to entertain more complexity in the systems they set up or in the structures that they embrace. Dudley Lynch’s mindmaker 6 tool helps you assess what value clusters on the Graves Spiral you use frequently.
He identified a spiral pattern illustrating their characteristic ways of expressing themselves. We have mapped these to the types of organisations and mindsets that we think these represent.
So the thinking styles and values systems of the people you have to deal with are going to determine your leadership and communication style.
These 2 tools help you understand your own thinking styles and values systems – they contain in addition a great deal of information about the underlying theory. This can make a great difference to your communication style and the results you get – whether motivating your teams or writing copy for your customers.
We recommend you use them on yourself first. If you feel that they are useful to your team, we can arrange to facilitate for you.