Meeting new people has always been kind of hard for me. It makes me a little bit anxious.
When I started the Southwestern Consulting coaching curriculum and first dug into Dustin Hillis’s book “Navigate”, my life has never been the same. With Dustin’s help, meeting new people is more like an adventurous game for me now. It’s still uncomfortable, but he added a pinch of excitement to it.
Navigate will help you be a better communicator and influencer in life. No two people are exactly alike. Each individual is created differently. We are all a combination of all the different behaviour styles, but some styles are more dominant than the others.
Why do I think Navigate is important?
Have you ever heard anybody say that man, I think we started off on the wrong foot? Let’s start over. We often communicate with people in a way we like to be talked to. We don’t pay attention to the others and what they’re like.
What if you could change your communication style according to who you are talking to? Is it something that would help you step to the next level? That would make any kind of communication many times easier, wouldn’t it?
There are 4 behaviour styles:
Fighter / Choleric
Fighters are results-oriented and straight to the point. Fighters don’t like to waste time on pleasantries and they have quite an aggressive style. They have a little patience and don’t give a damn about conflict or rejection. Since their biggest fear is losing control, fighter might seem confrontational when trying to maintain it.
Entertainer / Sanguine
Entertainers are people-oriented, energetic and outgoing. Be prepared to receive an earful because they love to talk. They just want to be your friends. Sometimes they can be a little flashy or want to be impressive.
Entertainers might lack discipline and organisational skills. They love to know who do you know, so start name-dropping like my good friend Ottomar. He’s like a Browning Machine gun, dropping 400–600 names per minute.
Entertainers defence system is to talk continually so they don’t have to risk hearing a negative comment about themselves. They may start with a story, gossip or something else to break the ice.
Detective / Phlegmatic
Detectives are task-oriented perfectionists who are very logical thinkers. They love accuracy and fear making mistakes, which is why it might take a long time for them to make a decision. They need to have all the specifics and details before making one. So you can count on them doing their homework.
Counselor / Melancholy
Counselors are team-oriented, laid-back and more introverted listeners who love consistency. They like guarantees and avoid controversy under pressure. Counselor is known for being a team player and they are very family-oriented.
When detectives make slow decisions because they’re afraid of being wrong, counselors make slow, cautious and wise decisions because they hate change. They prefer seeing the big picture and how something can help a group as a whole. They are not talkative and they don’t take risks.
How else to recognise different behaviour styles?
Talking over a phone
Fighters answer with a loud direct tone and an authoritative slow controlled speed in their voices. They are not amused by your engaging opening statement and just answer “Okay”. Listen for their What questions. “What can I do for you?”, “What do you want?”.
Entertainers answer with a loud upbeat tone, fast and exciting speed. Listen for their Who questions. “Who gave you my number?”, “Who else is using your product/service?”, “Who else is coming to the party?” and so on.
Detectives answer with a low quizzical tone, fast calculated speed. They won’t sound as irritated as a fighter, but will probably come back with something like “Why are you calling?”. Look for the Why questions.
Counselor will be the person who picks up the phone and gives you soft, barely audible low mumble of a hello. They will reply with welcoming, How may I help you? If you hear just silence on the other end of the call, you might be talking to a counselor. Listen for their How questions.
Fighters are showcasing awards, degrees and certificates. That indicates they are motivated by recognition and are probably someone who defines themselves by their achievements.
A messy office will typically belong to entertainers and they will probably tell you that it’s clean.
Detectives have a neat and tidy office. Everything has their own spot and is in order.
Counselors show off drawings and pictures of their kids. Also pictures of their team.
Entertainers write in large, somewhat messy lettering.
Fighters handwriting is a little bit smaller than entertainers. Fighters write in more messily than neatly because they don’t care about their flamboyant appearance.
Detectives write in small and neat handwriting.
Counselors write in messy small letters.
Body Language and Walking Style
Fighter resembles a drill sergeant. When they walk into a room as if they are on a mission. They have a somewhere to go, they have stuff to do. They pump their arms up and down and walk in a direct path to where they are going. They are a little tenser than average Joe and they seem to always be on point or attention.
If you are sitting on a desk or board table with someone who takes both hands and puts them together, forming a steeple with his fingers. It represents a need of control.
Entertainer resembles a bouncy ball. They will approach you like a movie star on a red carpet, happily waving and shaking hands along the way. They are smiling ear to ear with their faces glowing. Their arm movement is a carefree swaying motion.
If you notice someone who cannot sit still, is always acting fidgety and seems to have ADHD, it’s most probably an entertainer.
Detective resembles a judge in the courtroom, with a very sceptical look on their faces. They are naturally not trusting. They will stroll from one point to another, carefully observing every person and everything they come into contact with. They might walk up to you as if they are wondering why are they even talking to you.
They typically keep their body under control and try not to reveal anything about themselves. They will usually walk with no motion in their arms and will take short, calculated steps.
When sitting in a meeting, look for someone who’s poised and sitting upright and proper, perhaps taking calculated notes or working with numbers.
Counselor resembles a slow-moving bus. Making many stops and making sure everyone is on board. They care more about others than they do themselves, so their body language is usually very open and is receptive to what you have to say. They will walk into a room with a carefree manner and flow in their walk
If you notice that you’ve been in a group of people who all have been sharing ideas and philosophies, and there is someone who has been observing and not trying to throw in his or her ideas. They will observe for a while and then provide an educated response that is insightful and considerate of everyone’s opinions.
Fighter possesses a very distinct facial feature. Whenever you see someone who is thinking about something and deep line forms between his eyes, it comes from an intense focus on a task at hand over a lifetime. It’s a signal that you should just cut straight to the mustard.
Entertainers are easy to ready. You can just look at the shape of their oval or round head, which is your first clue that you have a firecracker, enthusiastic extroverted entertainer. The next place to direct your eyes is to the entertainers full, round meaty cheeks.
Having meaty cheeks indicates that someone can maintain high levels of energy for an extended amount of time. Also, it means someone has spent an extraordinary amount of time smiling and laughing. Make sure to give them a sincere compliment about their wonderful smile.
Common characteristics of detectives are to have narrow features, such as an upside-down triangle or a diamond-shaped head. Also, detectives tend to have a narrow and long nose. It indicates that one is financially conservative and careful with their spending. Detectives also have smaller ears, which means that they are not risk takers.
One of the most predominant features to look for on a counselor is a large, broad-based nose, which indicates the counselor is a giver and wants to make sure everyone is happy. The next thing to look for is a low-set ears. Low-set ears indicate that someone doesn’t make a quick, impulsive decisions.
When you shake Fighter’s hand, they will do one of two things, if not both. They will apply more pressure than is normal. Two, they will turn their hand on top of your hand. Both these characteristics indicate a need to assert control.
Entertainers might be waving at you ahead of being within earshot and give you a warm and loving greeting. When they shake your hand, they are not scared to overextend themselves and give you a hug, a fistbump or even a high five. They typically will come in for a handshake with a submissive position, having their hand already on the bottom with palm turned up, wanting to show an open, friendly greeting.
After engaging in a short, soft handshake, Detective will immediately step back into his comfort zone.
A lot of Counselors are pocket people. Counselor typically will analyze the situation and might offer a warm and caring handshake, or they might just keep to themselves and leave their hands in their pockets, giving you a head nod, turning the other way, or ignoring your handshake move.
Fighters wear solid colours and solid patterns. Male would probably wear a power suit and a power tie and shined shoes. If you see a man with a red tie, they have some fighter in them. Fighters tend to be attracted to red and black. A lot of fighters wear black all the time. They dress in an authoritative manner.
Entertainers wear bright colours with fun patterns in their clothing. They dress to impress. Look for fancy jewellery, expensive watches, wedding rings, big loopy earrings. They will probably wear colours that Fighters, Detectives and Counselors even didn’t know existed.
Detectives are neutral-colored, wear a modest outfit, probably with shirt tucked in and pants pressed. You can count on nothing being out of place.
Counselors like consistency. They dress for comfort and aren’t very concerned with what other people think about how they dress. They are more focused on other people than they are on themselves. They might even wear something from the nineties.