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Adapting communication style to behavioural style

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Dr Tony Alessandra, in The Platinum Rule, said to “treat others as they wish to be treated”, we must learn to view the world as others see it, adapt our communication style to their behavioural style, lead others in a way that motivates them to want to follow, sell in a way that makes it comfortable for them to buy, and embrace our differences while admiring the strengths in others.” Last week we began to examine the approach that each personality preference type is likely to take when filing a complaint of being overcharged for a product/service.

We established that The directors will demand an immediate refund and would not be concerned about why or how the error occurred. This week, we examine the Socializers, Relaters and Thinkers in action. The Socializers will call and express shock and disappointment that despite being a good customer such an error could occur. They will want you to acknowledge their loyalty and thank them for their helping to solve a problem that will impact others.

The Relaters will call and immediately apologize for bothering you. They may suggest that the error could have been their mistake and ask for assistance in correcting it. They will want to be reassured that you value the relationship. Relaters will get as much detail so that they can assist should the mistake reoccurs.

On the other hand, the Thinkers will call, describe the problem and give their theory of how it happened. They will insist until you acknowledge that they are right. They will hold while you investigate the matter. Thinkers will want reassurance that this will never happen again.

To efficiently use The Platinum Rule, you must first determine your own personality preference. This will help you to understand and appreciate what drives customers and your options for dealing with them. Dr. Alessandra said, “the cornerstone of The Platinum Rule – or any system of understanding and accommodating others is adaptability, which is a combination of flexibility and versatility. Flexibility is the willingness to change your behaviour. Versatility is the ability to change your behaviour. Some people may be willing to change, but unable because they are not natural actors. Other people may be great actors, but be unwilling to do so. Of course, the best combination is willing and able.”

It’s time to go Platinum.

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