A thought or two on the way people receive information best

listening

When people are working internationally two big considerations are language and culture. We put effort into understanding what works best with our audience.

If in the communications business as I have been, understanding what works best is more than anything about appreciating what is heard as much as what is said.

Sometimes there are communication breakdowns when people with different levels of second language skills and different cultures are involved.

That all sounds pretty obvious.

What is perhaps not so obvious is that exactly the same applies for communication (and doing business) challenges when we are in our ‘home’ country with people we think are just ‘like us.’

I always recommend putting as much effort into researching your audiences as anything else, whether presenting to a few hundred people or having a one to one meeting.

Spend time finding out how people like to receive information best, whether they prefer more audio or visual, if they like written materials, whether they are sensitive to the age, gender, seniority of the presenter, if they have pet likes and dislikes.

And beyond such considerations some more serious and fundamental things to think about including the physical abilities of the ‘receiver’ – poor mobility, hearing or eyesight for example. Having allowed for such things makes the reception of what is communicated getting off to a better start.

 

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