Way back in 1981 I learned some critical Communications Behaviors from both Neil Rackham and John Carlisle – that were part of their/Huthwaite’s SPIN Sales Training and Win-Win Negotiations training programs.
I was an employee at Motorola working to bring their Win-Win Negotiations training program into the organization for Purchasing staff, Sales staff, and our Government Negotiators.
Ever witness a heated agreement? Where two or more people are involved in a heated (or warm) dialogue only to discover after a few exchanges that they actually agreed with each other when they had started out believing that they were in disagreement?
Or a Mis-Read of the Writer’s/Speakers Intent?
As I’ve written before – There’s No Such Thing as Communications – Only Mis-Communications More or Less.
More on that in a minute.
What Can You/We Do?
Try to reduce the variation in what we intended to say or write, from how it was received.
Again, more on that in a few minutes.
These four behaviors – out of the 13 used in one Huthwait program, and 11 in the other – are key to getting to the bottom of a conversation without hitting bottom, so to speak.
• GI: Giving Information
• SI: Seeking Information
• S: Summarizing
• TU: Testing Understanding
Giving Information (GI) is telling somebody something.
Seeking Information (SI) is asking a question.
Summarizing (S) is restating the message (the given information) usually in an abbreviated manner. But it is the last behavior that is the powerful self-check technique.
Testing Understanding (TU) is repeating the message through paraphrasing or asking a clarifying question (a unique SI) with the deliberate intent to check out whether the error rate in the attempted communication that has occurred is within robustness toleration.
So on this Ides of March – let’s work to mend rather than divide – via our conversations & communications competence.
For more about these behaviors and who in any dialogue is responsible for the VR (Variability Reduction) of any Communications … see my article …
There’s No Such Thing as Communication—Only Miscommunication
There is No Such Thing as Communications – Only Miscommunications – 4 page PDF – published in 2000 but written in the mid-1990s – covering the 4 key Communications Behaviors for communications, negotiations, and interviewing – whether 1:1 or for group process facilitation.
The ISPI News & Notes version – 3-page PDF: There’s No Such Thing As Communications – News & Notes May-June 2000 Guy W Wallace