Communication Rules for FMEA Moderators

Many small and large hurdles await you along the path of your training to become an FMEA moderator. One of the first is Communication 101, as presented in ourFMEA Moderation Effectiveness Seminar: “Skillful Moderation for Error-free Results”.

It gives you the tools for achieving the common goal of developing flawless FMEA as an FMEA moderator. An often used image is that of the four sides or aspects of a message, as outlined by Schulz von Thun. The core statement that every piece of information can be interpreted according to four categories also applies to FMEA moderators and should be considered during every FMEA moderation.

Here is an example: An FMEA moderation participant makes the following statement: “We have 30 minutes left to complete the FMEA!”
The question is: How should we understand this sentence? According to Schulz von Thun’s four categories, four completely different statements result when considering the “four sides”:

  1. The factual aspect – “30 minutes remain.”
  2. The appeal aspect: “Dear FMEA moderator, please hurry up!”
  3. The relationship aspect – “I (speaker) am keeping an eye on our time resources, while you (FMEA moderator) are probably not.”
  4. Self-revelation: (What is the speaker saying about themselves in the process?) – for example, “I don’t have time for another FMEA meeting.”

Please note: points 3 and 4 are made up and completely different statements are of course also conceivable.

Source: Wikipedia "Vier-Seiten-Modell"

Source: Schulz von Thun "4 Schnäbel Modell"

Every FMEA moderator can, in turn, derive three communication success factors from this simple image of the four sides of a message.

Our success rules for FMEA moderators

  1. “I” messages instead of “you” messages
  2. The person asking also leads (communication and the FMEA team)
  3. Active listening (by repeatedly summarizing the understood content and thus the FMEA content)

This transfer of communication skills is an integral part of our FMEA moderator training. Give it a try!