Integrated work and lifestyle communication — an article extract written for “Business Today”.
Making comments and passing judgments are an unfortunate and uncomfortable part of social interactions. Across most of the workshops I’ve facilitated, there is a report of constant battles in dealing with critical language from others. Often we call this over critical play in group teams or organisations. So here are a few tips…
We all need each other as a business, community, team, or relationship so learning to communicate feedback effectively is a core tool. Working with learning some quick tools can save both time and wasted effort. An outside expert can provide the help needed to give and receive criticism in daily life or in the workplace without it leading to long or drawn out scenarios, and instead ensure that a sensitive situation produces a winning result.
The Core Issue
No one likes to feel like they aren’t liked which is often where we go if we receive feedback. Most of us react defensively not bringing about a desired outcome in the long run. It pays to remember that looking great is not just what you wear, it’s how you wear it, it’s how you deal with things by responding rather than reacting. Similarly, when charged with having to deliver criticism, we can choose to deliver it in various ways that can inhibit the positive result sought.
Leadership and communication
To lead anyone and be a leader, you must anticipate their needs and serve them. Being supportive means a lot more than just an encouraging word and a pat on the back. As a coach, your job is to get workers what they need to do their jobs well, for example tools, time, instruction, answers to questions and protection from outside intolerance. Most people are conscientious and honest; they want to be liked and this is at the core of why they are doing what they do. Tell them what to do, praise them for what you like and encourage and get out of the way and let them do it.
Here are three keys to effective coaching:
Take responsibility: Being trusting and respectful doesn’t let you off the hook. Managers have to manage. Harry Truman said it best, “The buck stops here.”
Be assertive: Seek results, not excuses or reasons. Be a strong presence. Make sure your “yes” means “yes” and your “no” means “no”.
Work with them, not on them: You’re in this thing together and you share common goals.
When a team does well a business does well.
WHEN GIVING CRITICISM ( Feedback ) or trying to resolve and issue remember, BE A COACH
Your job isn’t to correct mistakes, find fault, or assess blame. Reflect on what the positive outcome can be. And tap with just the person you need to not third parties about what can be easily resolved to parenting and leading teams is about being more of a coach and less of a boss and this applies to others who casually give you a passing criticism in social and personal environments. A boss talks, a coach listens.
So let us take a little bit of knowledge from leadership into daily tasks, social actions being in life, as often we don’t pay enough attention to the simple and small things and remember the minor things need our attention as the major things don’t happen without them.
Getting Value form Communicate effectively with the goal in sight
You get the best value from communication when you enter a conversation with how can we work together
The second best focus value is to listen then repeat back without defensiveness but merely with the goal in sight There is much information an good that can come of tow people who share feedback with a common gaol in sight for productive, problem resolution or even parenting . Just keep the gaol out front and don’t stray into other areas .
A boss tries to fix a problem, a coach issues challenges such as how can we talk about this so we can resolve it together?
A boss works on his employees, a coach works with them. How Can we plan of an effective solution?
A boss passes out blame, a coach takes responsibility. I’d like to meet with you or speak with you when can we do this ?
A good coach is positive, enthusiastic, supportive, trusting, respectful and patient. Try to focus on he outcome such as the preservation of a great team and great results.
That is not to suggest that you are supposed to be a buddy and a pal to everyone and make them like you. You are still in charge, but you should see this responsibility in a fresh light and respect yourself and not get run over.
WHEN RECEIVING CRITICISM, WHERE WARRANTED, ADMIT YOUR MISTAKES:
When considering the topic of Criticism and feedback it pays for us to remember The total quality management movement gave us a lot of great ideas, but “zero tolerance for errors” wasn’t one of them. Everyone makes mistakes – including you. Admit them. Fix thenLearn from them. Move on. The folks you work with know you are human and will gain more confidence in you if you show you are aware of this too. If the notion of making a mistake still bothers you, call it something else.
A great saying is “Failure is success if we learn from it.”That comes not from a philosopher, but from a successful businessman, Malcolm Forbes.
Call it learning.
The story of Thomas Edison and the light bulb is worth retelling in this context. Edison tried hundreds of different materials in order to find a element that would give off light without burning up when an electric current was passed through it. After hundreds of disappointments, he still had no guarantee that the idea would ever work. And yet he kept trying. Finally he found the magic element, tungsten.
When asked how he was able to endure all those failures, he reportedly said that he hadn’t considered any of his attempts to be failures. He was simply learning what wouldn’t work. Mistakes teach us what doesn’t work and that’s very valuable information. When you fall short of your goal, learn and go on. You may have to redefine your goal, alter your approach or get help. But as long as you continue to try, you can never fail.
To reiterate, here are three steps to successfully handling mistakes.
Admit them: Attempts to cover up a mistake, or to pass the blame for it waste time and energy and will make the original problem worse. Take the hit.
Fix them: As much as possible, fix any bad feelings or misunderstandings the mistake may have caused.
Learn from them: Is the goal reasonable? Is the approach workable? Is the problem in procedure or execution? Do we need to tinker, press forward or start over?
Remember the art of any new approach, just like a new outfit, is getting used to it and feeling great about it means getting comfortable with it. You can love anything when you wear it well- even criticism!
So practice these methods and take your time. Breathe and think before you respond.
If you need help to get the right edge to your business life, seek out a coach. You can’t totally reinvent behavioral patterns in a day, that can breed you a lifetime of successful investment of your time and more energy for the thigs you enjoy! Visit me for a 30 minutes to activation and rejuvenation session. Learn and activate your greatest communication skills and you will see the results straight away.