Daily Quote– New England Patriots Football Gate

Message for New England Patriots–

“The soul is dyed the color of its thoughts. Think only on those things that are in line with your principles and can bear the full light of day. The content of your character is your choice. Day by day, what you choose, what you think, and what you do is who you become. Your integrity is your destiny…it is the light that guides your way.” Heraclitus

Keep deflating the footballs and other questionable activities and watch your integrity and reputation disappear. The means never justify the ends. Good Look guys in the Super Bowl…

The Sterling Effect: How to Change Thinking about Ongoing Ignorance about Racism

What do you say to a person spouting ignorance about race? Just let them talk or confront their irrationality? Promote more education and understanding on projects that unite us? Try to understand the complexities of our own unique American history?

Recently, I was reflecting on this ongoing racism in America and then I remembered a conversation by James Baldwin to Studs Turkel that provided me with information and insight to this ongoing conflict in America. Don’t miss this this audio tape–

http://www.udel.edu/History/suisman/206_08-Fall/1-07%20James%20Baldwin,%201961.mp3

White Southern person says “it is just the way I was raise and you Yankees don’t get it”. This is not only an ignorant statement it is a way to try and forgive oneself and gives up the power of independent and critical thinking. You can change your thinking if you chose to.  Studs Terkel was best known for his work documenting the stories of everyday Americans, illuminating the undercurrents of the American psyche. James Baldwin’s lyrically hypnotic novels capture the struggles of the American black experience(s), wrestling with the intricacies of human identity in such a way that shakes readers to the core. Baldwin was perhaps best known for his ability to explore the nuance of typically taboo  interracial relationships, homosexuality, complexities within spiritual communities and his ability to articulate both anger at injustice and an ongoing belief in the underlining unity of humanity.

In this short and layered conversation, Baldwin recalls listening to Bessie Smith in Switzerland while writing his first novel, Go Tell It On the Mountain,  an autobiographical look at growing up in a conservative church in Harlem.  He boldly discusses race and racism, the invisibility of the black experience among most white Americans, and the deep need for an education that truly explores the historical interweaving of black and white Americans. “Education,” Baldwin states, “demands a certain daring, a certain independence of the mind.”  He talks of how the racism has harmed the nation in ways we are only beginning to recognize.

Terkel and Baldwin close the discussion by touching on his novel Nobody Knows My Name, noting the interdependence of human knowledge and freedom:

”To know your name, you’re going to have to know mine,” Baldwin

Daily Quote and Reflection: YOUR PERSONAL BOARD OF DIRECTORS

 

Daily Quote: “KEEP AWAY FROM THOSE WHO TRY TO BELITTLE YOUR AMBITIONS. SMALL PEOPLE ALWAYS DO THAT, BUT THE REALLY GREAT ONES MAKE YOU BELIEVE THAT YOU TOO CAN BECOME GREAT.” MARK TWAIN

REFLECTION: SO TRUE. I DO NOT NEED TO ADD MY 2 CENTS!

SELF-COACHING CHALLENGE: ESTABLISHING YOUR BOARD OF DIRECTORS EXERCISE.

Instructions:  Many organizations have a Board of Directors to provide policy guidance and direction.  On this Board of Directors are key individuals who contribute to the formulation of the organization’s vision/mission, goals and operating policies.

If you take a moment to reflect…you will realize that you have a “Personal Board of Directors” that has influenced you, at one time or another, during your life.

Spend the next 10 minutes trying to recall each of the members of your “board”.  Write their names DOWN AND IDENTIFY HOW THEY HAVE BEEN INFLUENTIAL IN YOUR LIFE.

After identifying the members of your “Board of Directors” and answer the following questions:

1.  Who provides emotional support?  Who do you turn to when times are tough or to share your successes?

2. Who provides emotional challenge?  Who helps you see reality when your emotions are dominant?

3. Who provides a nice balance to your strengths and weakness?  Who do you turn to when you are stumped or need ideas?

4. Who provides inspiration and stimulates you to do your absolute best?

5. Who provides comic relief?  Who do you have fun with?

6. Who can level with you and provide caring confrontation and feedback without you getting defensive?

7. Who sees the world through the same set of eyes and point of view and can provide support when you are down or stuck?

8. How many are older than you? ………………younger than you?

9. How many are males?……………………females?

10. Who do you absolutely trust and you feel comfortable with so that you can be vulnerable with and self-disclose inner secrets and dreams?

Now …who are willing to call or contact to tell them that they have had an impact on your life?  Pick one person…..and do it tonight!

Do the rest of your contacts by the end of the month.

 

Want to Improve Team Effectiveness: Learn about Team Emotional Intelligence

Daily Quote: “Emotional Intelligence has had a real impact on individual growth and performance but the only problem is that so far emotional intelligence has not focused its research on team competency or effectiveness. The reality is that most work in organizations is done by teams. And if managers have one pressing need today, it’s to find ways to make teams work better”. Vanessa Urch Druskat and Steven B. Wolff

“EXCELLENT” Meetings. Meetings are what bosses “do.” Meetings are de facto Leadership Opportunity #1. Act accordingly.  Dr. Tom Peters

How to make meetings more satisfying, productive and work more effectively? “Begin with the end in mind” or the vision thing. By setting a vision of what the team wants to accomplish and what a successful meeting looks like the changes of increasing engagement and having more satisfying outcomes increase dramatically .

We generally ignore priority setting or vision thinking in most meetings. For some reason there is pressure to get down to work quickly. This thinking goes like this “we can’t waste time on all this petty stuff we have important things to do”. So what happens is that most team leaders and members avoid or ignore answering these important questions: What is the most important thing to work on and accomplish while we are together this morning? Why are we doing this? What are we trying to achieve? Where are we trying to get to?’ What does success look like? How do we handle side issues that might come up? How do we get everyone involved, engaged and committed to what’s important to discuss and decide on today? What the leader and team fail to understand is how important it is to answer these questions not just to motivate thinking and members engagement but to guide how to use our valuable time together. Both “structure and processes” are key elements for increasing energy and productivity in meetings.  So my advice to those who are bored or frustrated by meetings is to –STOP, CLARIFY and GET AGREEMENT on what is important to focus on today.

Another important idea is presented by Druskat and Wolff in their Harvard Business Review’s article that the real source of a great team’s success lies in the fundamental understanding of group emotional intelligence. This understanding allows effective task processes to emerge like setting decision-making and communication norms and that cause members to commit to the shared established by the team. Their research says there are three conditions are essential to a group’s effectiveness: trust among members, a sense of group identity, and a sense of group efficacy.”

Planning and detail thinking are both about “how” to implement your vision, with planning being more at the 30,000 level and big picture thinking, and detail discussions are more ground level dealing with specific actions and commitments.   “This kind of ‘how’ to execute or work together is very difficult if you don’t have a  clear why these activities are a priority and important to the individuals, team and organizational imperatives.

Self-Coaching Challenge: Learning how to conduct effective meetings can’t be learned over night. To break the habits of poor meetings will take experimentation and practice. In the beginning instituting new group maintenance procedures or processes will feel unnatural or uncomfortable. So as a team leader it is important from a learning and mental stand point to stick with changes long enough to see if they can make a difference in your team’s productivity. Remember that ” A team can have everything going for it the brightest and most qualified people, access to resources–a clear mission and still fail because it lacks group emotional intelligence and understanding of group dynamics”.

So over the next month your challenge as team leader is to explore ways to improve your meetings through feedback and speaking-up. Start first by reaching out to team members on two questions:

1. How do they feel about the effectiveness of our present meetings.

2. Ask for suggestions on what needs to change in order to make them more productive?

 

Third Ear–Active listening Techniques for Connecting with Others

” Listening is an attitude of the heart, a genuine desire to be with another which both attracts and heals”. Carl Rogers

Active listening is a critical skill for leaders and coaches. As a an effective listener you show interest and are demonstrating the “golden rule” of listening: MMFI (Make Me Feel Important).  You will encourage people to more fully develop their answers and this will provide you invaluable information, understanding and insight.  Setting your concerns and self-interest aside and “being there” in the “here and now” with the other person is rare and powerful.  If you are truly listening you not only hear the words, but also the emotions, fears and issues of the other person.  This provides a unique bond of empathy and an opportunity to learn and connect with others. 

CPR Technique for better understanding and personal connections 

“Most people do not listen with the intent to understand; they listen with the intent to reply.” Dr.Stephen Covey

Clarifying

Ask questions to check your understanding of the meaning of the person’s words or ask person to clarify by telling you more… use open-ended questions.

  • Please tell me more about that issue….
  • “When you say __________, what exactly do you mean?”

Paraphrasing

In your own words repeat or restate what you think the other person said.

  • “Let me see if I understand you correctly…”
  •  It seems to me, if I understand you correctly,  that you want to find a new job. Have got it right?

Reflection

Use reflection to display empathy and to check your perception of the person’s emotions.  There are two components of reflection:

  • Tentative statement (“It appears that you are overwhelmed with forms”)
  • Attempt to identify the feeling (“You’re frustrated with…”) Identify the feeling being expressed, if you are wrong the person will set you straight.

Additional Active Listen Tools   

Focused Attention

Tune out distractions. Concentrate.  Look the person in the eye and turn toward them to clearly communicate your interest in what they are saying. Do not multitask when talking with others. Resist need to respond too quickly or interupt the other person.

Silence

Give the person time to collect their thoughts and continue.  Use non-verbal cues to demonstrate your receptivity.

See more at TED talk on Importance of Listening 

Want to know the quality and strength of your relationship with your Partner? Don’t miss this quiz!!

Dr. Gottman is a highly respected authority on predicting whether your relationship with your partner is healthy or in need of a tune-up. This quiz highlights elements of what Dr. Gottman refers to as your “love map.” In his workshops, Dr. Gottman discusses the step-by-step process of making sure that you nurture your friendship with your partner. In a survey of 200 couples attending a weekend workshop, Dr. Gottman found that the best predictor of passion and romance in a relationship was…you guessed it…the quality of the friendship!

Check the quality of the friendship by clicking this free quiz. http://www.gottman.com/how-well-do-you-know-your-partner/

Enjoy this check-up quiz and remember if things aren’t going well you have the power to change them.  Coach Mark

Daily Quote and Reflection:Leading others to Discover their Highest Potential

Daily Quote: Lao-Tzu’s Tao Te Ching On Leadership:

“Learn from the people
Plan with the people
Begin with what they have
Build on what they know
Of the best leaders
When the task is accomplished
The people will remark
We have done it ourselves.”

Reflection:

This has always been one of my favorite quotes because it focuses on how we don’t accomplish anything with others support and effort. Like you I have worked with some egocentric bosses who take all the credit when things go well and look to blame others when things go bad. Of course this de-motivates and times infuriate the team but in addition it is selfish and not constructive in building loyalty and trust which are the keys to empowering others. Really, Lao-Tzu’s advice tells to be unselfish and in to this we become “servant leaders”. When leaders focus on developing the people around them they challenge people to perform and do things they never though they could do. This is the true job of leaders–developing and helping others discover and reach their full potential by encouraging the to take ownership of their lives at work. This adds a wonderful sense of meaning and purpose to their lives.

Challenge Activity: When was the last time you gave the credit away to others. If it has been awhile ago try in the next 24 hours surprise some with a sincere compliment about their self-initiative and job well done.   Doing nice things for other people makes you feel good too.

Poem: On Love and Loyalty of Family

Daily Quote: ” So much of what is best in us is bound up in our love of family that it remains the measure of our stability because it measures our sense of loyalty. All other pacts of love or fear derive from it and are modeled upon it.”  Haniel Long  

Reflection: Sometimes when I am confused and hurt or just want to get centered in life I turn to poems–Here is my reflection on the ideas of loyalty, love, trust and caring of a family

Poem: Fragility of Love and Loyalty by MW Hardwick

Love, loyalty and trust are deep and lasting emotions

And yet they can be fleeting and fragile…

Confusion reins sometimes when they are tested

Based on a misguided words or anger

Or a need to be “right” 

Or tied to a family blood thing.

Loyalty is bound up in caring, trust and love

There is so much at stake when you decide to break these bonds

Loss—of  love, of family, love of spouse

Clarity of what is right or wrong

And stability in who you are…

Once broken it is hard to rebuild

Trust is loss and relations shattered

So think hard and long when “you say it is best I just go my way”.

Building trust and love and loyalty is based on inclusion not shunning

Stay true to your love and it will guide the way

For loyalty is fragile as love and trust…

Loyalty can bring us close or split us apart 

Sure things are done that test are love and loyalty

But never forget where we have been and our special need for love 

That you can stop but I will never forget or give up

That love, trust and loyalty make life special…

Because unconditional love and trust are the core of loyalty

And provide the spark to living and spirit to the soul

Binding us together for evermore

Both in joy, sorrow and pain of family life

I will always remember your smile and caring way…

Caring way…for this is what I choose to live with…

Emotions can run deep and fast…which test us all

But in good and bad times love, trust, respect and loyalty

Will shine through if you are open to seeing we are all fallible

I send my love and loyalty to you…unconditionally

Until we hug and laugh once again…

Until we hug and laugh…

Letting bygone be bygones…

‘ Till unconditional love, faithful trust and devoted loyalty

Return for keeps because there’s so much at stake… at stake…at stake.


The Glue for Successful Self-Coaching: Five phase T.R.U.S.T. Process

Emerson once said: “Trust men and they will be true to you; treat them greatly, and they will show themselves great”

Emerson was talking about how to learn to trust, connect with others and build loyalty. His point of view is that trust doesn’t start with the other person,but begins by looking in the mirror and deciding what it takes for you to trust others. Do you give trust away automatically until the person disappoints you or do you make others earn trust ?  Essentially, Emerson is talking about how to connect emotionally with others.

Since coaching goes nowhere fast if there is not a trust connection, I thought how could I tie the nebulous and sometimes vaporous concept of trust into a concrete and tangible process for coaching.  So for the last year I have noodling and experimenting with my coaching clients and now would like to share the “process with structure” TRUST framework with you. Here is the framework:

FIVE PHASE T.R.U.S.T. SELF COACHING PROCESS 

” Real friendships are built on selflessness, and selflessness is built on trust”. Wickism

1. Tell the Truth

2. Reality Check 

3. Understanding by Listening and Empathy

4. Solutions by Partnering

5. Together set Action Plan

Next blog I will explain in more detail the first step to the Self-Coaching process--Tell the Truth.

If you want the full model and tips for executing your Self-Coaching process sign up for Self-Coaching newsletter at http: thewick.wordpress.com/us

Thanks for your interest and support.

Want to unlock positive energy and get “unstuck” in Life? Embrace Change and Vulnerability

Daily Quote: 

“Vulnerability isn’t good or bad…(it) is the core of all emotions. To feel is to be vulnerable. To believe vulnerability is weakness is to believe that feeling is weakness. To foreclose on our emotional life out of fear that the costs will be too high is to walk away from the very thing that gives purpose and meaning to living… My entire research career has been fueled by a commitment to bring to light the emotions, thoughts, and behaviors that we all experience but never discuss — to find patterns and connections in our experiences so that we can learn more about the journey from fear and scarcity to love, belonging, and worthiness”.

Berne Brown, Shame and Vulnerability Researcher and Author

Reflection:

I am a big fan of Dr. Brown who through her research, writing and public speaking has shared many insights into the field of  emotional intelligence and personal vulnerability by exposing taboos and false assumptions about the importance of coming to grips with the emotional aspects of living a more authentic and purposeful life. See thewick post On the Power of Connection presented by Dr. Brown’s at TED Houston Conference.

Personally I see the benefits of living a more open and vulnerable life but like so many people the ability to tell the truth to our self and others, to own our emotions and “walk the talk” of being able to execute in spite of risks of failure and vulnerability increases my engagement with life because of my new-found courage to do what I need to do improve my quality of living a more purposeful life. As Dr. Brown says: ” Even if letting ourselves be seen and opening ourselves up to judgment or disappointment feels terrifying, the alternatives are worse: Choosing to feel nothing — numbing. Choosing to perfect, perform, and please our way out of vulnerability. Choosing rage, cruelty, or criticism. Choosing shame and blame. Like most of you reading this, I have some experience with all of these alternatives, and they all lead to same thing: disengagement and disconnection.”

Action Challenge: What are you doing or not doing to be more open to being vulnerable and having the courage to tell yourself the truth?  Finally, In what ways  are you avoiding the embracing of  change and openness in your daily interactions and settling for less than…in critical areas of your life–physically, emotionally mentally and spiritually? What can you do today to become a more open and vulnerable person who shows strength and courage by acting on your truths? 

Daily Quotes and Reflection–Trust and Vulnerability

Quotes:

“Vulnerability is . . . part of being human.  It’s as simple and as complicated as that. If we can’t be in touch with (and openly share) both our vulnerability and our strength in a balanced way, our self-regard suffers—and we won’t see others or ourselves clearly.” Dr. Carl Rogers

Trust is …is being courageous enough to open fully to another and accept the vulnerability of this state of being…

Reflection: I think to be trusting you need to be comfortable about self-disclosure and realize in being open you are vulnerable to other people labeling you less than… In addition, you risk being labeled as something you are not.   Trusting requires you to have a clear and strong self-awareness.  Trusting removes defensiveness and enables you to connect in a more meaningful way we others.

Action Assignment: Complete the following sentence to get at how and why you trust others.

When dealing with others trust is___________________________________.

Then reflect on your  sentence and try to figure out whether you give trust freely to others or they have to earn trust.

Gestures and other non-verbal communication tips to support and amplify “sticky” message

”What you do speaks so loud that I cannot hear what you say.” —Emerson

One of the most frequently asked question of presentation coaches is “What do I do with my hands or eyes” and How do I use gestures to connect or hurt my performance ? The worst thing you can do is to try to think about what you’re saying and figuring out at the same time how to gesture, move  use your hands, where you need to stand etc. One of the most important things to understand about presenting is that being yourself which includes aligning gestures with words and intent must be natural if you are going to be perceived as open, trustworthy and authentic.

My advice is to review a video of yourself presenting and you will quickly see how you come across to people. Any habit used to often in a presentation can become a distraction to the audience. For example, finger pointing or moving around the podium randomly will diminish your effectiveness and impact. Now let’s look at some Non-Verbal communication tools that support and amplify “sticky” message

 Handshake.  Firm and palm-to-palm contact is important for demonstrating confidence and sincerity. The fish shake with the tips of the fingers of the hand  signals insecurity and lack of confidence.  The handshake can leave either a good, poor or weak first impression and of course, comes into play to signal agreement or goodwill at the end of a meeting.

Eye contact. The eyes are the most powerful part of our body language, and can express everything from happiness, annoyance, interest, boredom and frustration. Consistent and frequent  eye contact using the technique of presenter communicating one thought to one person is a powerful way to build rapport and is usually perceived as the speaker being warm, honest and engaging. Darting eyes and looking over the heads of the audience is interpreted as nervousness, aloofness or disengagement by the audience.
Gestures:  Hands, Arms and legs position. Folded arms or crossed legs, perhaps turning away slightly, indicates a lack of interest and detachment. Later uncrossed arms and legs may be a sign of acceptance of your position or terms. An expressive presentation style will have toes pointed out and hands open when gesturing.   A less dynamic and shy presentation style  will point at members of the audience and keep their toes pointed in. None of these come through as positive gestures to the audience.
Posture and Movement. If you are trying to appear confident and authoritative, stand erect with shoulders back and legs about 12” apart with one leg further forward than the other . A slumped position usually indicates insecurity, nervousness and uneasiness.
Facial expression. A critical message delivered with a smiling face will have a totally different impact than one delivered with a stern or frowning face. In ability to smile or laugh sincerely makes you appear to be robitic or stiff as a presenter. Think here Al Gore or Mitt Romney who demonstrate that stiffness doesn’t work, because the warmth and sincerity is lost.

One last tip do not try to choreography or structure nonverbal behaviors. I’ve seen far too many presenters attempt to illustrate their narrative with specific gestures and wind up looking like buffoons. Instead, use your hands, arms and movements as you do naturally, to illustrate what you are saying. However, I do recommend one gesture: to extend your hand and arm periodically, bridging the gap between you and your audience  with your hand in handshake position or palms up signalling openness to comments and feedback

Three Ways to Influence and Change People’s Point of view.

We  all work hard to influence others. It is a part of daily life.  Unlike just sharing information or trying to increase the audience’s awareness, influence is about getting others to change their beliefs and act on new ideas and points of view.  The process of influence involves the use of strong arguments  and knowing  how to  be perceived and providing a message that makes your presentation credible and believable.  Having reviewed many studies and research with the purpose of trying to identify helpful and power influencing approaches. I have identified three powerful tactics that may fit that purpose. These tactics I hope will be a good addition for your persuasive tool kit. Here they are for your review:

1. Always do your homework on the person and audience you are communicating with. If you can identify the majority of beliefs and needs of the audience you can shape your arguments to reinforce the beliefs and provide ways to be relevant in meeting their needs. You message needs to be relevant and targeted. Remember the message is not about you but influence the audience to think and act in new ways.

2. Be flexible and open because there  is no single way to influence or change people’s point of view. Being perceived as dogmatic or rigided in seeking support or trying to influence others will undermined your credibility and authenticity. Pushing to hard pushes people to be defensive and play the “the Yes But..game”

3, There are all sorts of ways language and right words  can communicate sincerity and authenticity . Here are some solid facts for you:

  • People usually judge that more details mean someone is telling  the truth, this creates creditable
  • We find stories that are relevant have more power and chance to connect. Thus you are more influential if the audience is on the same emotional level..
  • We even think more raw facts make unlikely events more likely. Thus you are are perceived as more believable.

Just providing more tangibility  can be enough according to a recent study by Hansen and Wanke (2010). Compare these two sentences:

A recent study by Hansen and Wanke (2010) indicated that “statements of the very same content were judged as more probably true when they were written in concrete language than when they were written in abstract language.”

Take a look at these two sentences:

  • “Hamburg is the European record holder concerning the number of bridges.”
  • “In Hamburg, one can count the highest number of bridges in Europe.”

Which sentence did you find more believable?  In Hansen and Wanke’s study, “Truth From Language and Truth From Fit,” participants rated the second sentence as more believable.  While there isn’t any more detail in the second sentence or any significantly different meaning, it is rated as more believable because “it doesn’t beat around the bush, it conjures a simple, unambiguous and compelling image: you counting bridges.”

Hansen and Wanke give three reasons why concrete language indicates truth:

  1. Since our minds process concrete statements quickly, we automatically associate quick and easy with true.
  2. It is easier to create mental pictures of concrete statements.  Easier to recall = seems more true.
  3. When something can be easily pictured, it just seems more likely.  Easily pictured = more believable.

What are the implications of this study on concrete language and truth for your life?  Fortunately, most of us don’t go through the day coming up with ways to manipulate and distort what we are saying in order to be perceived as trustworthy or believable.  Perhaps an underlying reason why simple concrete language is perceived as more truthful is because when we are telling the truth, we’re usually not over-thinking it – we just tell it as it is.

We all have different styles of communication, and some of us have a natural tendency to go into more detail when telling stories/recounting events than others.  As with everything, context is key.  When you are listening to someone’s story, be sure to take into account what you already know about this person, how they typically communicate, as well as any relevant facts.  If someone is feeling stressed,  overwhelmed, or rushed, they will relay information or tell a story quite differently than when they are relaxed and calm.

When in doubt, just remember: keep it clear, concise, tangible and compelling.

Daily Quote and Reflection: Are we in Danger of Losing our Listening and Understanding of Others?

Daily Quote According to Julian Treasure we have a major problem in interpersonal communications–“We Losing our ability to listen and understand others—We spend  65% of our day listening and only remember 25% of what is said to us.”

Reflection: What caught my attention, however, was the section where he talks about listening for leaders, teachers, spouses, parents or friends.  He uses “RASA”, the sanskrit word for essence, as an acronym for effective listening  The essence of effective listening is to use-Rasa (Receive, Appreciate Summarize and  Ask) to be more engaged in the art of effective listening.

What caught my attention, however, was the section where he talks about listening for leaders, teachers, spouses, parents or friends.  He uses “Rasa”,  meaning the essence or core , as an acronym for:

Receive – pay attention and make a unique connect

Appreciate – show that you are engaged and interested –turn-off the cell and put down the Blackberry etc.

Summarize – make sure you understood

Ask – expand your knowledge

Other topics he tackles in this AHA Speech are the barriers to listening. He says we are to impatient and pickup just  sound bites, we are all too much in a hurry and no one teaches us about the importance and how to listening more effectively. We must all learn to listen more consciously to understand each other by consciously listening for understanding, rather than shouting, criticizing and judging others. If concentrate on learning the skills of listening we can create a better world by understanding and respecting others.

Here is my reflective challenge for you –View the TED video by Julian Treasure then ask Are you embracing listening in your daily interactions ?  In your different roles of parent, teacher, mentor are your actions aligned with the RASA elements of listening. And if not how could you put them into your life so that relationships become more effective?

Daily Quote and Reflection: Why Trust begins with Yourself and other observations

Quote:  Emerson once said: “Trust men and they will be true to you; treat them greatly, and they will show themselves great”

Reflection: Emerson was talking about how to learn to trust, connect with others and build loyalty. His point of view is that trust doesn’t start with the other person, but begins by looking in the mirror and deciding what it takes for you to trust others. Do you give trust away automatically or do you make the person earn your trust? Do you expect great things from others or just wait for them to screw-up and then remove trust?  Essentially, Emerson is talking about how to connect emotionally with others. He is expressing his belief that in order to build an effective relationship we must start with trusting others. Trust needs to be demonstrated through your behavior not just by mouthing the words to others.  As I reflect on my own experiences in building an effective team I think trust is the cornerstone for creating a climate that accelerates cooperative working and building together the behaviors that support effective and efficient teamwork. 

If your team individually and collectively is supportive of others and respectful you can build on this positive climate to create the potential for team synergy (1+1 =3. In building synergy you tap the energy and commitment for the team  to reach way beyond what any one individual could accomplish by themselves. Effective and synergistic team members are shown to stretch way beyond what is expected by being engaged in both work and personal issues to achieve organization goals. Trust like this reduces defensiveness and unhealthy competition so that you team can produce spectacular and high levels of satisfaction for themselves and clients or peers they work with.  This respectful approach of giving trust away reduces individual insecurities and opens the door for maximizing possibilities. Your expectations and ability to trust will great enormous energy and self-belief in others and after growing in this positive environment, they’ll not only believe and trust you, they will prove to themselves that they can accomplish more than they thought they could. I think Emerson is coining the idea of the Self-Fulfilling Prophecy (SFP) before Robert Merton, social psychologist, identified and labeled the power of this concept to influence and motivate people to be the best they can be no matter the stress or situation they find themselves in.

Coaching Framework and Elements of Customer-Focused Selling.

Framework for Sales Coaching  

  1. Selling is a mutual exchange of value. Helping the customer find the service or product that will provide value and meet their needs.
  2. Selling isn’t something you do to people; it’s something you do for and with them.
  3. Developing trust and rapport precedes any selling activity.
  4. Understanding people’s  needs and pain must always precede attempts to present and  sell.
  5. Selling techniques give way to value-driven principles.
  6. Truth, respect, and credibility provide the basis for long-term relationships.
  7. Values and perceptions contribute more to sales success than do techniques or strategies.
  8. Empathy is the key to understanding customers problems.
  9. Coaching is never manipulation. It’s the ability to understand your customers needs and their customer goals. It is a “discovery” learning and problem solving process not a “tell and sell” approach for helping the the buyer to find and buy what they need not what you want to sell.  Openness and honesty are the cornerstone of the process. It is customer-centered  not sales-driven process
  10. Closing is a process that naturally happens when you have provide the right solution to their ease their pain and find ways to male money or save money.

Elements of  a Sales Coaching Session.

1. Establish a respectful and trusting relationship. Challenge your assumptions about the person’s ability and shortcomings, gather the data and information.  Be matter of fact in presenting information and ask open-ended questions to find-out sales person’s concerns and issues.

2. Explore the Difference and Identify Problems

3.   Sharpen the Difference or Agreement–establish priorities for coaching session

4.    Identifying and Exploring making the relationship a personal win  solution for salesperson.

5. Get Commitment – Identify Action Plan – Follow-Up by using Smart-steps for change

6.  Continuous Improvement and Feedback Loops to support change and open communication.