Have you ever been stopped in your tracks, struck by what someone has just said? It happened to me the other day.
I had just turned on the radio in the car and what the presenter said hooked me straight away.
Which is really saying something because my two seven year olds were in the back and they are usually a) fighting, b) singing some inappropriate lyrics at the tops of their voices (think Bruno Mars, Locked Out of Heaven or c) giving me driving ‘instructions’ (incidentally you don’t actually need to scream ‘STOP – RED LIGHT!’ when there is a red light 50 metres to the right of you).
The programme that caught my attention was called ‘All in the Mind’ (Radio 4) and the topic was ‘Neuromyths’.
In a nutshell, the programme looked at how the latest brain research can be put into the classroom to help children to learn; it discussed the idea of how children may have one preferred style of learning; for example, they may be someone that gets things better if it’s:
- Visual (they look at them)
- Auditory (hear them)
- Kinaesthetic (things that are moving)
While it’s true that children can have a preference for one of the styles above, it’s just not true that it makes any difference to how they learn, if you go with their preference. There is no convincing evidence to show that there is any benefit in teaching to any particular learning style for learners. It’s a myth. And in fact some psychological studies have shown that there is some advantage to some people in receiving information that is not in their preferred learning style.
And that’s what stopped me in my tracks…
It got me thinking – if there is an advantage to receiving information that is not in our preferred learning style, as the programme highlighted, could there be an advantage in receiving something that is not in our preferred communication style too?
At SK Chase we use ‘Think – Feel – Know’ to help with communication.
Effective communication brings many advantages: we get where we’re choosing to go faster and more efficiently.
This particular tool helps us to understand how each member of the team prefers to process information and express themselves using the different communication styles that we all use. Therefore any communications we have, both internally and externally, we try to ensure that it appeals to each of these different preferences:
- Think: focus on fact, data, words and numbers, detail
- Feel: energy, use stories and anecdotes and will ‘paint a picture’
- Know: use their instinct and intuition
In recent projects I’ve worked on, such as creating a gift voucher best practise guide, I have tried to ensure that I have appealed to all styles: the knowers (the headlines), the feelers (visual representation) and the thinkers (facts, more detail).
If we appeal to all three styles, each time, as much as we can, there’s no missing information. And everyone benefits from this.
I’m a ‘knower’, but I believe there is huge benefit to me receiving all the information both in a visual way AND backed up by data and words too. It’s a complete picture.
Another neuro myth? We only use 10% of the brain. Not true – we use it all 🙂