Adapting Your Management Approach for Different Learning Styles
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Adapting Your Management Approach for Different Learning Styles

There are several different styles of management, and each manager will work differently with their employees. The autocratic manager makes all of the decisions and passes those decisions down to their employees, while the permissive manager works with their employees more as a team and allows them to be part of the discussion when it comes to making a decision. No matter what your management style, a good manager creates a working environment in which employees can succeed at the projects and assignments that may be assigned. A good manager recognizes that workers learn and process information differently and will work to provide an environment that will allow each employee to succeed. This means recognizing each type of learner and knowing how to encourage success.

Visual/Verbal?

This type of learner does best when they have the opportunity to both listen to and look at the information. In a presentation, you should provide a written outline to look and speak about the information. This learner likes to work in a quiet environment, and you will need to provide an environment at your workplace where this is possible. This type of worker is good at coming up with solutions and doing research for a project. Be sure that you take the time to explain things verbally and to back up that information with visual examples.

Visual/Nonverbal?

A visual nonverbal learner learns best through diagrams and charts. They work best in a quiet environment and may need the opportunity to process the graphs and charts on their own. They are good at independent work, and an online job may suit them. If you want to help this type of worker to do well, be sure to provide graphs and charts for them to help them understand the work. Many of these types of learners make excellent artists or graphic designers. This type of worker works and learns best independently. If you have work that needs to be done this way or that involves charts, maps, or graphs, you should assign it to this type of worker. They may become frustrated with too many meetings or discussions: You should be available to answer questions when needed, but let them work independently the majority of the time.

Auditory/Verbal?

An auditory and verbal learner learns best by listening and talking through problems. In order for this type of learner to be successful, they need to be able talk about their ideas and work through what they are learning. They learn through hearing things, but they are also good at writing responses and reports. Additionally, they will work better in an environment where they can listen to music or background noise while working. In order to help this type of learner to be successful in the workplace, you need to allow them to listen to music or other noise while working. A good solution is to have them wear headphones. Be sure you take the time to talk to this worker throughout the project to make sure that they are thinking through the problem and that they fully understand what is expected throughout the project. This type of learner does best by talking things through. You can help them be successful by being a sounding board as they complete their work.

Tactile/Kinesthetic

The tactile and kinesthetic learner learns best by doing. The learning or work environment is also very important for this type of learner to be successful. The learner needs to be able to respect their manager and feel respected and safe. In order to get the best results out of this type of leaner, you need to set up a calm work environment and gain their respect. Additionally, they may do better in an environment where they have the opportunity to move around as they work or think. This worker may come across as having nervous energy, but it is just how they process information. They are not being disrespectful if they fidget while listening or learning. Only about five percent of the population has this learning style, so you may not work with type of learner very often.