An important truth in learning and communications is that everyone understands, processes, and retains information in different ways. Some people do better by seeing and reading, others by hearing, and still others by hands-on involvement. That’s why it’s crucial for your worksite wellness communications to use various strategies to reach your intended audience.
Use Multiple Styles to Connect With All Readers
Think about it: If you rely only on one approach – say, a newsletter – those whose main learning style involves hearing or interacting with the information may not tune into your message at all – or if they do, maybe not as well as if you gave a presentation or organized an activity where they could participate.
What’s more, using a mix of communication strategies catering to the various learning styles can reinforce messages. Information tends to “stick” with the intended receivers when they are exposed to the communications multiple times and in multiple ways.
The VAK System
A widely accepted approach to looking at learning styles is the VAK system that bases one’s learning preferences on the three main sensory receivers. In the VAK system, learning styles include:
- Visual – Visual learners prefer to see or observe things, such as pictures, photographs, diagrams, demonstrations, displays, handouts, films, flip-chart, etc.
- Auditory – Auditory learners prefer to learn by listening – to the spoken word (either themselves or from others) or from sounds and noises.
- Kinesthetic (movement) – Kinesthetic learners prefer physical experience – touching, feeling, holding, doing, and practical hands-on experiences.
What to do next:
- Check out this assessment – To get an idea of the learning styles makeup in your organization, consider having each of your team members take this quick learning style assessment. You can find it, along with more information about catering to the different learning styles, in our white paper “Why Learning Styles Matter In Workplace Communications.”
- Read these 2 helpful articles:
Let’s talk! If you’d like a second opinion on any of your workplace communications, send them our way. We’ll take a look and send you our thoughts. Contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.