The Failure to Communicate

Too often I hear that old line – I think we have a failure to communicate – it always distresses me because IF this is really the issue and we know it then why not fix it? I propose that one of the reasons is that we all forget that to communicate there must be a communicator and a listener, who provides feedback to what the communicator is saying. Can everyone in a situation be communicated with? Is communication repeating the same message over and over until it sinks in? Are we born to communicate properly or do we learn these skills? All these are topics we will explore along with the need to strategically plan our communications efforts in our next book.

Faciliation —

Facilitation is the learned skill of making it easier for people to get from point A to point B  through a process of dialogue and deliberation – it is not always an easy job yet one that is badly needed between a community, government and corporations and. To get from here to there though requires dialogue, give and take, patience and deliberation. Although facilitation can be challenging at times it is rewarding most of the time. Coming soon to our blog and website some new ideas for facilitators.

Collaborate or Cooperate?

So, one of my clients has just sent a request to several of his colleagues proposing some unique ideas that can be mutually beneficial to both parties, perhaps.

I often explain to my clients that there is a difference, in my mind at least, between asking someone to cooperate with you and asking someone to collaborate.

Cooperation typically is when the other party will agree to at least play nicey-nicey. We see cooperation all the time on the playground when kids play in the same sandbox yet stay to themselves. They are cooperating by not interfering with each other’s play activity.

However, collaboration means to co-labor. Co-laboring with another party can be difficult at times because both parties have to agree to stay at the table, roll up their sleeves and work toward a mutually beneficial solution to a problem.

Co-laboring is often time consuming, frustrating and complicated by the needs, wants and desires of the parties at the table yet when an agreement is reached it is typically in the best interest of all parties. Co-laboring is when the 3-year old and the 5-year old build the magnificent sand castle at the beach and together are proud of their achievement!

My client will have to give some, the co-labors will give some and ultimately the outcome of the often elongated discussions and negotiations will result in a win-win for everyone.

Collaborating needs to be done more often in Congress!

Dealing effectively with “Analyticals” in Your Life

Dealing with Analyticals

Analyticals by nature are thinkers and process people. They don’t like surprises and they certainly don’t like a lot of social interaction since they are not comfortable with just chit-chat as one of my analytical colleagues told me just let me get to my cubicle so I can go to work. They are serious-minded and focused on working step-by-step through a process to get them from Point A to Point B.

They want to know the how in a relationship – How will we get this job done? is often their first question. Descriptions of analytical are often that they are: compliant, analyzers, factual, thinkers, rational, often seen as the Resident Genius or the Would Be Expert. They often are record keepers and submissive yet hostile.

They see themselves (see being the operative word as they are often visual by nature) as being organized and careful and accurate.

However their possible partner perception, which is if you work with or live with one, is that they are inflexible, slow to move, unresponsive and critical.

Their greatest fear is to make a mistake and be called on it and they stress and become tense when a situation turns emotional or they are taken by surprise. When under stress they will simply avoid you and the situation!

If you choose to manage or prevent conflict with them focus on process, use facts and data to support the discussion, slow your speech down so they have time to think about and integrate what you are saying, ask questions to get feedback and when possible send questions to them in writing before the meeting, always follow your agenda, and put follow up notes in writing. Most of all be patient as analytical show little emotion, provide little feedback and must see the situation clearly before they react.