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Do Men Really Talk More Than Women?

What Ambit for Teams Data Revealed and More...

2018 has been an exciting year for us! We were fortunate to have collaborated with many executive leadership trainers throughout the world who helped bring our new Ambit for Teams product to life.

Ambit for Teams was put to the test as we piloted twice with an early client from a leading executive education program that provides leadership training. The results were fascinating for us, the client, and their customers - executives from leading international companies.

In an exercise, the client grouped participants into six teams of two. The simulation was a role-playing scenario where Colleague A goes to Colleague B to ask for their cooperation in reaching a business agreement. Unknown to Colleague A, Colleague B is still upset and offended by a joke Colleague A made six months ago at Colleague B’s expense. The groups turned on the Ambit app in their meetings and were timed to see which teams could successfully reach an agreement.

Although the sample size for this data is fairly small, we were ecstatic to uncover these new insights using our current team dashboard features. The client and the executive students were also very intrigued by the data insights and felt more self-aware of their communication styles.

Insights we've discovered:

1. Outcome Distribution

From the data of the dashboards, we grouped the teams by the number of turns they took in a conversation, from least to most turns.

Next, we plotted groups by the length and number of turns in their conversation. Groups that succeeded in reaching agreement are shown in green; unsuccessful groups in red. We were surprised that 3 out of the 4 groups that succeeded took the least amount of time and were more efficient in taking turns in their conversation.

Conclusion:

Groups that succeeded took more turns per minute and had shorter conversations compared to those groups that failed to reach an agreement.

2. Airtime by Gender

We didn't stop there. Gender equality has become even a hotter topic with the spotlight brought out by the “Me Too” movement. We decided to explore the dynamics of gender on how much people talk and discovered that women on average took up less airtime in comparison to men.

Conclusion:

Men talked more than women in meetings. On average they talked 10% more in conversations.

3. Emotional Affect

What’s a startup if we don’t push ourselves? We decided to go a little above and beyond and test out how we can analyze the emotional tone of the different speakers. Although this is still in the works, it was incredibly fascinating to uncover certain trends of emotions within the groups that succeeded vs. the groups that failed.

Conclusion:

Groups that reached an agreement had more positive tones in their conversation, specifically in their use of joyful words. In comparison, groups that failed had minimal, if not at all, moments of joy in their conversation and displayed moments of anger.

Results

During feedback sessions after these pilots, we were told that through these pilots, trainers were able to:

  • Provide evidence-based recommendations to students

  • Collect enough data points during exercises for research

  • Receive qualitative data on communication

Executive students were able to:

  • Discover their communication styles

  • Receive data to improve everyday work-life collaboration

  • Use AI-tool to track progress and measure impact

We are very excited for 2019 and the infinite new knowledge it may bring for us! With many more pilots to come, we are grateful for these opportunities to learn more about how Ambit can bridge the gaps of communication!

For 2019, we would like to share with you our team’s New Year's Communication Resolutions, and how we plan on using our Ambit for Teams to uncover these insights:

  • I would like to know how much do I actually contribute to meetings even when not prompted to?

  • I'd love to know when tension is a positive vs. a negative dynamic in teams. It seems in some circumstances it can a strong driver of decisions, but in others, it can be demotivating.

  • How can we get takeaways and action items from meetings? How can we transition faster to the end takeaways?

  • What are some things I can improve on in my communication?

  • How can I know what I’m saying is actually useful for the team?

  • How can I become a better leader?

Stay Tuned and Happy New Year!

Signing off,

Team Ambit

About Ambit Analytics

A spin-off from SRI International, the birthplace of Apple’s Siri and Nuance, Ambit leverages world-class audio AI technology to quantify verbal communication and uses those metrics to train people to become better communicators. Ambit is based in San Francisco. Learn more at: www.ambit.ai.

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