March 28, 2022

The Value of Preference Discussions

Building trust-based communication with employees is of paramount importance for supervisors.  Workplaces are becoming more and more diverse every day and supervisors must be aware that not everyone wants to be communicated with in the same manner. Supervisors need to be comfortable and confident when communicating with all members of their team.

Organizations everywhere are adopting coaching cultures and actively support positive reinforcement/ feedback systems.  This may include having supervisors formally recognize team members’ achievements, sometimes in front of the team. However, not everyone may appreciate public recognition.

Accordingly, we suggest supervisors conduct preference discussions with employees, during on-boarding for new employees and additionally with their current team members. During these discussions, supervisors can introduce the reasons “why” they are having the discussion:

  • We want everyone to feel welcome and to know that they are important.
  • We want to know how they wish to be addressed.
  • We want to know if they prefer public recognition for great work, or would they prefer such recognition take place in private?

The intent of preference discussions is simply to provide a forum for supervisors and employees to improve mutual understanding.  This will lead to better communication between employees and supervisors and hence improved productivity, safety, and job satisfaction.

For more information, please contact us.  We are your partners in training and would love to work with you to improve the performance of your supervisors and managers.

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