Yesterday I was reminded of the importance of framing my communication…

My patient husband agreed to listen to a practice run of a keynote I have written. After 7 minutes he stopped me to show me some boxes he had doodled on the page. He wanted to confirm his understanding of the schema for the presentation.

What great feedback!

He didn’t get how he was supposed to be listening, because I hadn’t provided a clear conceptual framework for my presentation.

Yeas ago when I first began training, providing sufficient conceptual framework upfront was always a challenge for me. Participants need to understand meaning and purpose, and my role as a trainer is to make connections between the material and the learners. (This is the ‘why’ for anyone familiar with 4MAT training approach.)

I found this challenging because I was so clear on the need for the content, and so excited about the value it would add to the participants, that I wanted to get right in and start sharing. Anything that delayed this sharing seemed like a disservice to the trainees.

Understanding my motivational profile was helpful in building my communication flexibility. At that time my profile was high on ‘Use’## which is about getting starting on a new activity and learning as you go.

Focusing on increasing my motivation for Concept## – analyzing and building a theoretical framework for my thinking before taking action – helped me make dramatic improvements in my training. Just recently after a workshop to build effective working relationships between two teams, a client offered feedback: ‘The workshop achieved all the outcomes we had hoped for. You invested in some really good time early today getting everyone on the same page, understanding the need for this workshop and why we are together.’

Being clear on the conceptual framework has helped strengthen the power of my communication. (And occasionally when I overlook the importance in my enthusiasm for the topic, I have systems in place to remind me!)

Where might you be failing to invest time in the conceptual framing upfront, and so falling short of the results you could be achieving?

What’s been your experience of the value of framing your communication? Share your thoughts here.

Have an Extraordinary day
##Motivational Profiling through the inventory of Work Attitudes and Motivations (iWAM) measures 48 motivational patterns or metaprograms, including the Work Approach patterns of Concept, Structure, and Use. For more information see


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