Monday, March 28, 2011

Do You Sometimes Think You Are Speaking Chinese?

When my children were little we visited my sister in San Fransisco for the first time.  While we were there, we spent a day in Chinatown, enjoying all the unusual sights and sounds.  My youngest daughter, Hayley, was about four years old and was fascinated with the language that she heard all around her.  So fascinated that she felt she could not only imitate the language but that she could communicate as well.  To our great embarrassment, she spent most of the time talking loudly and with great enthusiasm to every passersby in what she imagined was Chinese...
Bilingual Chinatown street sign on Clay Street...

Do you ever feel that you are communicating with those around you only to find out they are on a whole other wavelength?   Do you feel like they are speaking a totally different language? Do you feel like you are missing a key concept? Probably happens more than we would like to think.  One reason this happens is that we don't take into account the personality profile of the person we are talking with and how that differs from our own personality type.  For instance, if you are a D type personality, chances are your interaction is very direct, forceful and results oriented.  Works pretty well if you are talking to another D or perhaps a C personality.  If you are talking to a S type though, you are probably coming across as overwhelming and maybe even intimidating.  If you are an I type personality, you love to talk and interact which works well if you are talking and interacting with another I or even an S personality.  But what if  you are talking to a C personality who just wants to know the facts, not the social chatter?  Would you know how to best communicate?  What if you understood the needs or  the secret fuel of the personality you were trying to communicate with? Would it make a difference?  You better believe it!

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