Recent research has confirmed what we instinctively have always believed to be true.
Men and women use communication differently.
Yes, the language may be the same, but the intent of the communication is dramatically different.
If you do not understand that difference, then you are forever doomed to scratch your head in bewilderment when interacting with the opposite sex.
Men tend to use communication to emphasize status, power and independence, while women use it to create connection.
These differences can create real challenges for managers.
Men And Women Use Communication Differently
The research demonstrated that there is more neural activity in the female brain at any given time than in the male brain.
Women are more developed in communicating with the left side of the brain than their male counterparts.
This left brain development increases a woman’s level of sensitivity in general.
For many women conversation is a negotiation for closeness, seeking and giving confirmation, also, general support.
This is evident on the sales floor.
Women tend to go into a sales presentation focused on building trust and establishing a sincere rapport, as opposed to just the final outcome.
They can often remember more physical and relational details than men.
The research showed that men are less adept at multi tasking when communication is involved.
Men are more direct in their communication style and choice of words.
They want to solve the problem in front of them first, then they will move on to the next problem.
Less time is devoted to building a coalition of input.
They want the facts, save the back story.
When you listen to most men give a sales presentation the directness of their communication becomes readily apparent.
They are working their way down a mental checklist to close the sale.
Less time is devoted to building a lasting rapport.
I have literally seen a male client approach a male sales professional with the entire conversation coming down to this, “I need a Christmas gift for my wife.” to which the male sales professional said, “We have been selling a lot of these this season, do you need it wrapped?” to which the client basically grunted while reaching for his wallet.
The Mix In The Middle.
The success or failure of a store can, in many ways, be directly related to the overall success of the lines of communication.
How do you address the more male centered desire for simple, clear, bottom-line conversations with the multi-layered, nurturing, emotionally complex style of most women?
The Truth Is That It Comes Down To Three Aspects.
First – You must truly want to engage in “active listening” to the members on your team,
Second – Remember to be aware that the sexes do use communication differently,
Third – Be willingly to change your communication style depending on who is your audience.
For most managers this will not come easily at first, but with practice, while keeping it top of mind, you can quickly see results.
Always remember the intent of communication is dramatically different for men and women.
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