Communication Styles

It’s vital that you learn how to effectively communicatate with a variety of personality types. A case in point….

I was in an edit session a while ago when the editor mentioned how nice it would be if the producer (me) had exact start and stop times for each of the scenes we were to use in the project. He seemed irritated that I was constantly asking his opinion about the shots. “We could be spending our time assembling exactly what you want instead of searching for the right shot with every edit,” he said. “Fine,” I said, and I handed him my edit notes listing my “selects” and he assembled the spot to my specifications without further input.

I was disappointed by the editor’s attitude. I thought I was including him in the creative process by asking his opinion. He thought I was disorganized and wasting his time. I saw a lost opportunity to collaborate. He saw it as me asking him to do my job. (I found this out after the session when we were talking about the project).

Looking back I realized I had made two mistakes:

  1. I assumed that the editor wanted to be involved in “the creative process” (I never asked if he actually wanted to be included).
  2. I reacted to the editor’s emotion rather than listening and asking why he was responding in what I considered a negative manner.

Not everyone is going to understand your motives or share your perspective. The more effective your are communicating with different personality types the more successful you’re likely to be in the creative workplace.

Here’s a primer from eHow.

– T.D. Boss

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