Over the past three years I’ve been getting board packages a few days in advance of our meetings from our president at Comcate.
In passing I mentioned to him, "You know, the waterfall charts don’t do anything for me."
He was surprised: "What do you mean they don’t do anything for you?"
"They just don’t communicate the budget breakout as much as raw percentages would. Seeing the waterfall in a visual format doesn’t work for me."
As a verbal guy, fancy visual graphs have never moved me.
Then we talked about the other people who were getting the packages on a regular basis. What were their learning styles? What format would work best for them?
I should step back and think more carefully about how I process information and whether this fact is clear to everyone who sends me stuff.
A big part of effective networking is knowing how the other person learns and communicates. Some of this has to do with cognitive transmission, some has to do with personal preference. For example, I’d much rather get a long email than a phone call out of the blue.
How do you learn? How do you prefer to receive communications? Is everyone in your company on the same page about how everyone else processes data?