by Michael Holland    

We race through our days – have back-to-back meetings, answer too many e-mails to count and push to meet the deadlines we are faced with.  With this pace we need to be reminded to take some time out to think about the best way to work with each of our employees.

Every employee is a unique individual. She has her own behavioral “DNA” which drives her preferences on how she likes to work and what motivates her. Paying attention to an employee’s preferences, and your own, can help you to communicate and structure work in a way to make a person as successful as possible.


Stop – Slow down. Take a few moments to focus on an employee’s behaviors, in addition to the work he is producing.

Look – Look for “cues.” When you are talking and discussing an issue, look at his body language and other behavioral cues. What triggers action? What slows him down? When does he become resistant? When he is working on a project, what does he respond well to? When he is interacting with others, what do you see?

Listen – Listen to an employee’s responses. Listen to the words and more. What is he telling you beyond the words?

Every employee has his own style, driving his preferences. The more we can understand the uniqueness of each individual, the more we can structure work situations to tap into his potential. Take a few moments to read the “cues” an employee gives you and you can increase his success – and yours.

(Also see our Everything DiSC Workplace profile for tools to help you learn the communications styles of your employees.)