Change requires you to become very good at influence, persuasion, and co-creation with others.
This happens in relationships and through conversations and you need to become more skilled at both. Bottom line.
Leaders have four times the number of stakeholders they have to manage than they did 15 years ago. (Rock) Work is meant to be significantly more ‘collaborative’.
You likely haven’t been taught how ‘to be’ in relationship. Perhaps your role models haven’t been that skilled either.
Conversations are not about you talking, sharing information, telling people what to do, or telling others what’s on your mind.
You can’t fight brain chemistry and evolution. If there is fear and distrust and lack of empathy or understanding, people’s cognitive brains shut down. Performance potential is lost.
Humans are wired for connection. You want to feel good about your interactions with people and leave them feeling good about you.
How much difference to your effectiveness would it make if:
- You became skilled at anticipating others’ needs and likely reactions, in advance of talking to them
- You learned to discern the kinds of conversations needed for different situations and different people
- You learned to identify and redirect other peoples’ behaviours that inhibit efficiency and effectiveness, particularly in your team
- You learned to tell the truth without apology, soft peddling, ticking others off or hurting someone, including yourself
- Conflict actually improved your relationships rather than shutting them down
- Your team worked together like the proverbial well-oiled machine, even when under stress and disagreement
- Your partners responded to your requests more positively and productively
- Risky even threatening topics were openly put on the table and wrestled with rather than avoided and left unsaid, except at the ‘water cooler’.
- You felt comfortable and prepared for tough conversations and tough relationships because you’ve explored your concerns and created a smart plan with someone who is skilled at these dynamics
Here are some of the items facing you as a leader that depend on high quality relationships and conversations:
- The need to upgrade the performance of your team, as a team rather than a collective of individual contributors
- The need to work with many stakeholders within greater complexity
- The need to meet your ambitious goals through others over whom you have no direct authority
- The need to craft difficult, bold and challenging messages, often to power, and then constructively deliver them and respond in the moment to their points of view, including resistance…without crushing yourself in the process
- The need to manage positional dynamics that are often politically driven and lead to wasted time, silos, and communication breakdowns.
- Competing for leadership appointments that depend more on your relationships and how you show up in and frame your conversations about your candidacy and much less about your technical track record
Standing between you and what you want to achieve is the limiting step. How are others limiting your ability to achieve ambitious goals?
We believe others see, think, and feel what we do, understand our good intentions and if they don’t, they should. Not true.
You are responsible for your part in relationships. You are responsible for communicating in a way that makes important things happen. It’s not about ‘them’. It’s about you doing what it takes.
Understand others, influence behaviours and grow relationships by Contacting Us today.
If you want to add value at a higher and more strategic level through shifting culture and the system within which work gets done, begin with System Excellence.
|“Sharon’s work with our team has led to measurable improvement: 31% in constructive interaction, 26% in trust, 21% in team leadership, and 18% in alignment and optimism. When these factors improve, bottom line results and sustainability improve.”
Major International Bank
|“We have hired and promoted generations of managers with robust analytical skills and poor social skills, and we don’t seem to think that matters.”
David Rock, Why Organizations Fail“The single biggest problem in communications is the illusion that it has taken place.”
George Bernard Shaw
“Trying to fight inertia and indifference with analytical arguments is like tossing a fire extinguisher to someone who’s drowning. The solution doesn’t match the problem.”