Tips and stories to add value to you and your organisation
In the headlong rush to make progress in the world it’s tempting to charge into ‘doing’ work, in order to look super-productive and be well thought of. However, this is to ignore a key element that we need to remember, if we are going to have a successful modern career – that’s is: People first, work second.
Until we make contact with people, we can’t effectively work with them.
This is because we need them to trust us, we need them to be honest with us and we need them to share issues and concerns with us. Otherwise the second we leave the room, the work we thought would happen starts to unravel, as their doubts creep in and they edge away from their promises.
Making contact requires us to realise that people really are important (not just to pretend either …you’ll be found out if you’re not sincere). I was with a client the other week who, at the end of the session, offered the following feedback:
‘I was dreading today Richard. I didn’t want to meet you for this [coaching] work. And yet …where did the time go? It was great fun. What was I worried about?’
This was great feedback, and I had sensed she was pushing me away, so I had spent half the time simply taking time for us to build an honest relationship. Whilst I can’t remember the exact conversation, here are 5 things I did to make a difference:
1) Listened to my senses …the client looked uncomfortable to begin with.
2) Reminded myself that getting to know someone is work! It underpins future success.
3) Noticed areas of commonality. It turned out that we shared some similarities in our life. Funny that!
4) Allowed the conversation to unfold. As it did so the client unfolded her arms.
5) Had fun. The room had a drinks trolley in it left over from a Christmas party. I wondered aloud if we should taste some of the wine, just to make sure it was still drinkable. Haha! Fun is fun and a smile is a great way to make contact.
Think about your work this week and which people you need to spend time with as part of your successful week? Who needs a bit of your time?
Remember: People is work too innit!
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Brilliant ways to increase performance, stay employed and keep the money rolling in
Published 2011 Marshall Cavendish
Secrets and skills to sell yourself effectively in the Modern Age
Published 2010 Marshall Cavendish
An insider's guide to working for yourself
Published 2007 Cyan Books and Marshall Cavendish