Wednesday, July 15, 2009


GUEST BLOGGER: Whit Mitchell, CEO/President of Working InSync International

com⋅mu⋅ni⋅ca⋅tion [kuh-myoo-ni-key-shuhn]

“The imparting or interchange of thoughts, opinions, or information by speech, writing, or signs.” The definition sounds easy enough, right? But for most people to effectively communicate it’s much more of a challenge. There are a lot of key components to really evaluate and understand before being able to get your message across in the right way.

My name is Whit Mitchell and I am the CEO/President of Working InSync International in Hanover, New Hampshire. I have been working with leaders at various companies for 18 years on how to communicate and work more effectively as a team. I use comprehensive instruments to evaluate behaviors and motivators of each individual to help them break down barriers that get in their way so they can do great work. I have seen great successes and improvements with teams that first begin to understand themselves and then secondly how to adapt to others behavioral styles.

Some of the instruments I use are Target Training International (TTI Products). This is a research-based, problem-solving company that is dedicated in improving the quality of life in the workplace through the application of assessments. There are two main assessments that begin to really give you great insight on a person: DISC and PIAV.

DISC is the universal language of observable human behavior, or “how we act”. DISC does not measure education, experience, values or intelligence. It simply measures an individual’s behaviors, or how they communicate. TTI’s DISC assessment accurately measures four dimensions of behavior, which are each associated with a behavioral style:

How you respond to problems or challenges ⇒ Dominance

How you influence others to your point of view ⇒ Influence

How you respond to the pace of the environment ⇒ Steadiness

How you respond to rules and procedures ⇒ Compliance

Please circle the one behavior in the upper half of the chart that most represents you in the workplace. Below are some ways to effectively communicate with all of the four styles:

Communication Tips:

High DHigh IHigh SHigh C
Be clear and right to the pointProvide a warm and friendly environmentBegin with a personal commentPrepare your case in advance
Stick to BusinessDon’t use a lot of detailAct softly and nonthreateningStick to business
Be prepared and organizedAsk “feeling” questionsAsk “how” questions to draw their opinionBe accurate and realistic

Another assessment I provide is called the Personal Interests, Attitudes, and Values (PIAV). This tool measures the relative prominence of six basic interests or motives: theoretical, utilitarian, aesthetic, social, individualistic, and traditional values. Values and attitudes help to initiate one's behavior and are sometimes called the hidden motivators because they are not always readily observed. The report helps illuminate those motivating factors and attitudes and allows a person to understand the driving forces behind their decisions. It is often used as a key part of the selection process.

So as you can see this is just a small insight on how effective communication takes place. These tools not only give you a better understanding of how you and others view yourself, but also putting that to use in communicating with others. Before jumping into a conversation with someone it’s important to take these factors into consideration so you’re making the most out of your time and being productive. For more information please contact me at: 603.643.6337 or email me at:

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