Improve Your Communication to Improve Leader Effectiveness

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Leaders need to attend to very specific communication skills to improve their leadership. Communication takes effort and attention to detail.

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Improve Your Communication to Improve Leader Effectiveness

  1. 1. IMPROVE YOUR COMMUNICATION; IMPROVE YOUR EFFECTIVENESS. “A CLASSIC IS SOMETHING EVERYONE WANTS TO HAVE READ, BUT NO ONE WANTS TO READ.” ~ MARK TWAIN BOHN’S COROLLARY: COMMUNICATION IS SOMETHING EVERY ORGANIZATION WANTS, BUT FEW WANT TO DO. ~ DR. JIM BOHN
  2. 2. Leadership Communication seems so vague (“fuzzy”, “soft skill”, “non-financial”) one is hard pressed to measure it’s organizational (and financial) impact.
  3. 3. Organizational Communication is something everyone believes is happening, simply because people talk and share ideas.
  4. 4. The linear look … Ineffective Communications Ineffective processing Ineffective action Ineffective output Ineffective delivery Lower customer satisfaction Loss of profit Loss of reputation Loss of market share
  5. 5. How effective is your leadership communication? Are your team members more effective because of your communication? How has your communication made your organization more effective? Hard Questions for Leaders Rate yourself … 10 is excellent; 1 = poor
  6. 6. You are ineffective in your communication style 5.55 Other leaders are ineffective when communicating 6.08 “What are the greatest challenges facing your organization today?” Research conducted by Pro/Axios – 50 global respondents Scale: 10 – Deeply Concerned to 1- Not at All Concerned Most leaders think they communicate better than other people!
  7. 7. Your communication style as a leader sets the tone for communication throughout the entire organization. It impacts your most precious organizational resource.
  8. 8. What is your most precious organizational resource?
  9. 9. The motivation of your people is the single most precious resource in your company. Employee motivation is the energy source powering organizational success. Why would you waste it?
  10. 10. Precious organizational energy is lost when poor communication creates friction and employee inertia.
  11. 11. Friction occurs when two objects are occupying the same space. That applies to employee relationships too!
  12. 12. People fear for their jobs. Rumors and gossip. People assume things that are not true. Ineffective communication causes friction:
  13. 13. Ineffective communication causes friction when people don’t know their role or responsibility They become frustrated with one another, and thus … Point fingers Lay blame Argue
  14. 14. Lack of information causes friction … People will fill __ the blanks.
  15. 15. Employee Inertia occurs when they’re not sure what to do.
  16. 16. Employee Inertia happens when there is: 1. Obtuse visioning
  17. 17. Employee Inertia happens when there is: 1. Obtuse visioning 2. Ineffective direction setting
  18. 18. Employee Inertia happens when there is: 1. Obtuse visioning 2. Ineffective direction setting 3. Incomplete decision making
  19. 19. Employee Inertia happens when there is: 1. Obtuse visioning 2. Ineffective direction setting 3. Incomplete decision making 4. Mis-coordinated action Leaders drop the ball! People get reassigned – without a successor! Now what do I do?
  20. 20. Employee Inertia happens when there is: 1. Obtuse visioning 2. Ineffective direction setting 3. Incomplete decision making 4. Mis-coordinated action 5. Incomplete follow-through
  21. 21.  Ineffective communication: 1. stifles energy and 2. leads to low productivity – 3. more time spent on people struggles than output.  Ineffective communication ultimately leads to uncertainty and then fear.  Fear of failure, fear of incompetence, fear of making a mistake.  Costly rework! The Effects of Employee Inertia
  22. 22. Ineffective communication causes the loss of precious organizational energy.
  23. 23. How can you reduce Employee Inertia? Your communications provides a context for decision making, allow people to sort things out among competing priorities. Allows people to answer this question: “What do I need to do to support the organization?”
  24. 24. How can you reduce Employee Inertia? Your communication provides a context for prioritization. “What do I need to do to do first??” Danger if this isn’t done. People become paralyzed and ineffective. Reasons it isn't done. As a leader, you need to develop effective ways for prioritizing projects.
  25. 25. Take the time to clearly state expectations, direction, and the end goal.
  26. 26. It’s time to think about how your leadership communication impacts employee motivation. 5 minutes.
  27. 27. People expect their orders will be obeyed DICTATOR People assume communication has occurred DELEGATOR Leaders often forget they been discussing something for a long time, yet expect others to adapt immediately, as if they had been part of the conversation. BLIND SPOT Barriers to communication effectiveness Leader assumptions … EXTREMES
  28. 28. CHARACTERISTICS OF THE COMMUNICATOR Lack of patience IMPATIENCE: Managers don’t take the time. Clarity of sender Not checking for reception LOGISTICS OF COMMUNICATION CRITICAL MOMENTS Barriers to communication effectiveness Sound Bites
  29. 29. CHARACTERISTICS OF THE COMMUNICATOR Lack of patience IMPATIENCE: Managers don’t take the time. Clarity of sender Not checking for reception LOGISTICS OF COMMUNICATION Timing of communication Doing things at the last minute Physical space of communication CRITICAL MOMENTS Barriers to communication effectiveness Pay Attention to your surroundings …
  30. 30. CHARACTERISTICS OF THE COMMUNICATOR Lack of patience IMPATIENCE: Managers don’t take the time. Clarity of sender Not checking for reception LOGISTICS OF COMMUNICATION Timing of communication Doing things at the last minute Physical space of communication CRITICAL MOMENTS Highest needs for communication often occur at the lowest point in the project. Barriers to communication effectiveness Take a moment to be clear.
  31. 31. Barriers to communication effectiveness … Fear of being wrong – and loss of ego.  IMPERFECTION: Managers fear loss of credibility if they communicate something that could change. Get over it.  IMAGE: Managers may have concern about not having all the answers. Get over it.  INSULATION: Managers are afraid to give up power, hence the arcane phrase “need to know.” Get over it.
  32. 32. Accelerationhappens when a path is clear and safe.
  33. 33. SPECIFIC ACTIONS YOU CAN TAKE TO INCREASE ACCELERATION. Provide Knowledge of roles (who’s on first?)
  34. 34. SPECIFIC ACTIONS YOU CAN TAKE TO INCREASE ACCELERATION. Provide Knowledge of the future – “People expect leaders in this business to know where they’re going.”
  35. 35. •Momentumhappens when one good project leads to another, and another and another.
  36. 36. Provide Knowledge of what has happened? So people can feel a sense of efficacy, achievement, movement and momentum. SPECIFIC ACTIONS YOU CAN TAKE TO INCREASE MOMENTUM.
  37. 37. Provide Knowledge of victories - To allow the emotional sense of achievement and build efficacy for the next project. SPECIFIC ACTIONS YOU CAN TAKE TO INCREASE MOMENTUM.
  38. 38. Efficiency happens when the amount of output is greater than the input. Getting people to work together takes effort, clear focus, and focused agendas.
  39. 39. Notification • Why is this important? • Alerts people to an upcoming event or change. • Why does it work? • Information focuses attention. • How does it help? • Motivates people to direct their energy in a specific direction. SPECIFIC ACTIONS YOU CAN TAKE TO INCREASE EFFICIENCY.
  40. 40. Notification Preparation • Why is this important? • Advanced preparation alerts people to assess schedules and necessary energy. • Why does it work? • Specific details remove uncertainty.  Dates Times Impact • How does it help? • Locks in timing for many people who must work together. SPECIFIC ACTIONS YOU CAN TAKE TO INCREASE EFFICIENCY.
  41. 41. Notification Preparation Coordination • Why is this important? • Advanced coordination alerts people of key timing/date commitments. • Why does it work? • Improves the likelihood that people will work together. • How does it help? • Ensures people act together when necessary for a successful outcome. SPECIFIC ACTIONS YOU CAN TAKE TO INCREASE EFFICIENCY.
  42. 42. Notification Preparation ValidationCoordination • Why is this important? • Follow up or foul up! • Why does it work? • Feedback loops assess the effectiveness of communication. How do you know your communication got through? Do something crazy – pick up the phone and ask. • How does it help? • Repetition is essential for retention. SPECIFIC ACTIONS YOU CAN TAKE TO INCREASE EFFICIENCY.
  43. 43. Notification Preparation Validation AffirmationCoordination • Why is this important? • People need to know they‘ve made a difference. • Why does it work? • The motivational power of recognition is widely known, but not widely practiced. • How does it help? • Recognition builds energy for the next challenge! SPECIFIC ACTIONS YOU CAN TAKE TO INCREASE EFFICIENCY.
  44. 44. The motivation of your people is the single most precious resource in your company. Employee motivation is the energy source powering organizational success. Preserve it, conserve it, manage it.
  45. 45. How effective is your leadership communication right now?
  46. 46. Pro/Axios We offer plainspoken guidance for those who do the work.  Check out the Rapid Diagnostic @ www.ProAxios.com  info@proaxios.com  651-302-1574  Minneapolis, MN, USA  @DrJimBohn 5/19/2014 Organizational Insight Leading to Organizational Transformation

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