At every point in your practice’s process, communication can break down and lead to misunderstandings, lower outcomes, and poor patient care. Understanding the communication style of every member of your team — including yourself — can increase team engagement and cohesion, boosting your practice’s efficiency and minimizing problems due to miscommunication.
Assessing Communication Styles
There are many tools for assessing communication style. For example, we’ve developed our own unique assessment tool, as well as an associated series of trainings, based on the DISC theory of human behavior and emotion. We call it R3, shorthand for Right People, Right Place, Right Expectations.
The R3 assessment breaks your communication style into four core energies. Based on the level and intensity of each, it assigns you a communication style. For example, someone with an analytic and stabilizing approach to communication might have the Peacemaker style. The R3 also offers more detailed analyses, such as what your intuitive response to pressure is.
How to Leverage a Communication Assessment
Develop a theoretical understanding
Many people have never stopped to consider how they communicate and how it affects those around them. The R3 assessment helps team members understand the role they play in every interpersonal interaction they have. It also highlights the most effective way to interact with someone who has a different communication style.
For example, the Peacemaker mentioned above would interact with an Attainer — someone with an analytic but decisive approach to communication — in one way but would interact with a fellow Peacemaker in a different way.
Learn the lingo
Like every communication-assessment tool, the R3 uses its own unique set of terms. Part of the R3 process is getting the whole team well versed in the R3 “language” so every team member can express their perspective knowing they’re understood by the whole team.
Put theory into practice
Understanding the findings in a report only goes so far. Part of our R3 process is holding trainings and team-building opportunities to troubleshoot scenarios and role-play with team members who have a different style. This provides the whole team with the experience and tools to successfully interact with each communication style in real-world situations.
Think outside the box
Once you and your team have internalized how to leverage your knowledge of communication styles, you’ll start to notice ways to apply it on the go that increase efficiencies — such as quickly assessing a patient’s communication style and adjusting accordingly.
We’re Here to Help
Have you already assessed your team’s communication style? Download our 10 tips for next steps on leveraging the results, no matter what assessment tool you used.
If you’re interested in learning more about R3 or another aspect of our approach to boosting practice efficiency, contact us today!