The 4 Communication Styles

How often has your “message” been misunderstood? Sadly, it happens all too often.

We think we’re being clear, yet in actuality, we’re clear as mud!

The single biggest problem in communication is the illusion that it has taken place.
–George Bernard Shaw

Our styles vary, and as a result, we process and interpret things differently. HRDQ shares that there are 4 basic communication styles, outlined below: Direct, Spirited, Considerate, and Systematic.

Which style do you feel best describes you?


  • Gets to the bottom line
  • Speaks forcefully
  • Maintains eye contact
  • Presents position strongly


  • Persuasive
  • Is a good story-teller
  • Focuses on the big picture
  • Uses motivational speech


  • Listens well
  • Is a good counselor
  • Uses supportive language
  • Builds trust


  • Presents precisely
  • Focus on facts
  • Efficient on speech
  • Well organized workplace

Based on these styles, how do you think misunderstandings could occur? For example, the systematic communicator focuses on facts. How might they have clarity issues with those with the spirited style who focuses on the big picture?

To ensure effective communication, don’t assume your message was accurately interpreted – ask for a recap of what was “heard”.

BONUS – QWIKTIP – Click to read why Listening Takes Work