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The Leadercast Podcast
The Leadercast Podcast

Episode · 2 years ago

62. How to Improve Your Communication Style w/ Luis Gonzáles

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

What’s your biggest communication weakness as a leader? 

 

We can all admit to communication flaws. Here are some tools and attitudes to help us to improve. 

 

In this episode, we interview Luis Gonzáles, Global Business Communications Consultant at Fierce, Inc., about improving your communication style. 

 

What we talked about: 

 

- Cultivating an attitude of curiosity 

 

- How & why to delegate 

 

- Communications lessons from the hospitality industry 

 

- 2 suggestions for improving remote work communication 

 

Check out the full podcast with Luis Gonzáles by clicking here. 

 

If you don’t use Apple Podcasts as your audio player, you can also find every episode at this link.

This is the leader cast podcast, helping you become a leader worth following. Hello, listeners, welcome to the leader cast podcast. I'm your host, Angie Errands, and our guests today is all about communication, conversation and culture. These are all topics we see leaders focusing on right now due to remote teams, difficult decisions and how the concepts of truth and empathy play into this more than ever. To cover all these topics are guests today's Louis Gonzalez. Luis is a communications consultant, coach and trainer with more than twenty five years experience and helping improve business outcomes or organizations. He has successfully driven learning initiatives incorporating effective communication, cross cultural communication, customer satisfaction and soft skills training. Currently, he works closely with CEOS, leaders and individuals, positively impacting business outcomes through effective communication and global, multicultural and remote work team studies. Before we get started, we know many of our leaders out there are looking for more insight to their problems and to find the solutions. Take a moment to hear a little bit about leader cast now and how it can help you become a leader of worth following. Leader guests now is an online resource for your leadership development. Get the solutions to your leadership challenges on any device at the moment you need it. To learn more, go to now doubt leader castcom Louise, let's first start off with you and provide our listeners with a little background. Tell us what a day in the life of Louis. That thought leader looks like. I thank you very much and I like that question because people are often amazed or surprised. I'm going to early riser, so I have learned as busy as I'm sure some of your listeners can relate, as busy as we are, especially nowadays, as companies are pivoting and doing everything we can and some challenging times, I'm going to early riser. Man. I get up, my alarm goes off at three forty five in the morning and I dedicate the first hour and a half to myself. Yoga, stretching, drink some tea, some reading, make sure I have that grounding time for myself, and then I hit it. I'm online by thirty, answering emails, getting any creative work that I need to get done, following up on any any loose ends. I find that I get a lot of productive work done between six am and about a thirty or nine, when the rest of the team starts, you know, hopping on the zoom chats and all of that. So I've learned that. I've learned that lesson the hard way, but that's what works for me. And then I put in a good solid once, you know, people start hopping online and conference calls begin and workshops begin and all of that, I may put in a good eleven hours or even twelve hours, but that means my end of the day is at four o'clock, five o'clock in the afternoon. I call that a productive day and I'm very strict about it. I shut down. I I'm okay with knowing that I have a list of things to do, a list of things I need to accomplish, and that list will never be depleted at the end of any given day and I've just had to be okay with that. And so that's kind of how my day works. I have been very intentional about making sure that I'm taking care of myself. I'm in a role with a lot of responsibilities, a lot of interaction, a lot of talking and a lot of presenting all that stuff, and so I've had to make sure I take care of myself and when I do take care of myself and I get good sleep and I make sure I have time for Yoga and exercise and all that, I feel pretty effective, I feel pretty clear headed and I feel like I'm very productive. So that's kind of my general look at how my day goes. You know, good, solid work, ending it by four five PM and starting it all over again the next morning by three forty five. I think that's so important for leader. Is similar to me and you. I make a list of things I need to get done for the day, but I have started to work with my team's where I say focus on the top three. Don't expect to get everything done. So I think that's...

...a good reminder for our leaders out there that that list won't be depleted. So thank you for saying that, because people forget, I think sometimes, especially with the work life balance that some people are experience at home right now. It's a really good, important thing to remember. There's one thing if I could just add very quickly to that. It's not just about being okay with everything on that list not getting done. The other side, for me, the slip side of the coin is also being okay with constantly shifting priorities. So every morning I may look at that list and shift priority is what's the most important thing I need to do today, and then I shift those priorities. So it's kind of a combination of the two. I wanted to add that. Great Reminder for sure. Overall, you have a variety of topics that I have heard from you speak on other podcasts. I know you're a conversationalist for fierce and in thought leadership. So really today I want us to focus on to them for our leader cast community, one being communication and one being culture, as many times those two topics kind of go hand in hand. So first let's take a walk down the memory lane of Louis, looking at your past. What drove you to focus on communication? Who Have you worked within the past that was an amazing communicator and why? Love it? Love it. Yes, I agree the the the crossroads of Culture and Communication. That's been an interest of mine probably as long as I can remember. So I grew up in very multicultural, multiracial background, neighborhood upbringing. I come from a town near Los Angeles California, called Compton, California. Some of your listeners may be familiar with that town. Right now it's mostly known for rap music and gang violence, but in the S and s and s it had a little bit of a different mood to what I guess you could say. But I grew up in a very racially mixed, diverse neighborhood background and so I was exposed to African Americans. I come from a Mexican American background. So within my family we live what you could call, you know, culturally speaking, the Mexican style, the Mexican way, in terms of how we talk, how we live and how we eat and all of that, although we're US Americans. I step outside of my house, my neighborhood was very racially mixed and so I had a lot of interactions with African Americans, with other Mexican Americans and with Anglo White Americans that did not leave Compton when white flight happened. So I was exposed to all kinds of different communication styles and even as a little kid I would observe these different communication styles, for better or for worse. Sometimes, in other words, the way one style of communication that's, you know, through one culture, one particular culture may land a different way for the listener coming from another culture. So, as an example, I remember being a little kid, maybe in second grade, and one of the Mexican American classmates, a friend of mine, Little Kid, was being scolded by the teacher and as he was being scolded, he was looking down at his feet and the teacher kept telling him look at me when I'm talking to you, look at me when I'm talking to you, and he wouldn't look at the teacher and I thought to myself, even as a little kid, what's going on there? Why isn't he looking at the teacher? Well, years later, in my studies and in my research and just experientially, I came to understand that that was a cultural communication and style that the kid had learned. You don't, from a Latin American perspective, or at least from my personal Mexican American perspective, if you're being scolded by an elder or a parent, it's disrespectful to look them in the eye. You look down, you you you assume chameful posture if you will, you know. And so that was one instance that I remember very clearly as a kid seeing there's different communication styles here and there's a communication breakdown and possibly a relationship breakdown. So with that and, you know, leaving Compton eventually and going to the rich Carlton where I work for about Eighteen Years Riz Carlton Hotel Company, in the Marriott Hotel Company. Then I got more exposure...

...to lots of different cultures from all over the world, people coming into the hotel and it was just, I boil it down to just a curiosity. Maybe it's in my DNA or how I'm hardwired. We all have our interests and skills and talents and that was one of mine. How do people communicate? Why do they communicate that way? Where the breakdowns, when it happens, and how do we fix that? How do how can we all get along? How can we improve our communication style? So I think that was the basis. It was just being exposed to so many different cultures and the way they communicate from early childhood. I have worked with some amazing communicators in my day that I still emulate to this day. As I'm still working on smoothing out my communication style and my rough edges. The first person that comes to mind, and who always is the first person that comes to mind in this regard, is my former HR director at the Ritz Carlton, who was the HR director therefore, Gosh, at least twelve years that I was there. She was there when I got hired and I work very closely with her for many years, and she had just such a smooth way of communicating, including when it came time to deliver difficult messages, hard messages to receive. She had such a smooth way of doing that that I still to this day, look up to her and emulate her. That's number one. Number two another person who I look up too came from the Ritz Carlton as well, an old boss of mind, Scott Cummings, who trained me well and showed me the skills on how to effectively train others. I learned by his example and now I'm a trainer and I owe a lot to him, and that all boils down to the style of communication and the way he communicated when training others. He had that skill, that knack to have the training in the in the knowledge share land with wherever it is he was training, and I picked up on that. So those are the two people that I've worked with in the past that are just awesome, amazing communicators. I owe a lot to them. I appreciate that the two people that you spoke about are from a hotel brand. As meeting professional myself, I know the Mary at Brandon very well. Ritz Carlton is such an international brand. So you talked about this communication style between cultures. I'm sure you learned a lot from that and that engagement with the the people who are visiting the property, in the guests of the property, knowing that what goes into hospitality work. In that you were there, I I personally know that Marriott and Ritz Carlton take a such good care of their staff. You know, they really invest in their team members because they believe that if you invest in your team, they take care of your guests. So I would love to hear it. Sounds like you learned a lot about communication there, but what else did you hear specifically from that experience? Gosh. Well, first of all, what I learned early on and what I still hold on to today as just a foundational belief, I guess you could say, that I have about effective communication and effective conversations is get curious first before starting any conversation with anyone. And now, specifically speaking about perhaps a guest in the hotel that you're that you're serving. Don't assume you know what they want, don't assume you know what they're thinking, don't assume anything. And again I'm talking specifically about a guest that you're interacting with in the hospitality industry or anyone in life. As I go into conversations, that's a rule of thing I have. I'm going to go in with the intent to really learn more and listen. I'm going to ask questions and I'm going to really listen with the intent to understand as much as I can. So how that translates into guest services, and this is so funny because I often use this example. When I used to interview people. This is around a lady, late S I would say eight hundred and ninety nine into two thousand. I was doing a lot of interviewing and hiring for a guest services professionals. Those are the people in the what we call the front of the House, the you know, the front desk, people, People Park your cars, all that stuff. One of the questions I used to ask was and it was kind of a trick question, but it really helped me...

...weed out the actual good candidates, and that question was a VIP is coming to the hotel for this for the weekend. What would you do to entertain them? Now, the Ritz Carlton I worked at was in the Los Angeles area, so you can imagine all the answers I would get from these applicants about what they would do to entertain this VIP who's coming for the weekend. I'll take him to Disneyland, take him to the Beverly Hills, take him shopping, take him to the beach, all kinds of stuff. There's only one right answer, Angie. The only right answer is ask the guess what they want to do and only believe or not. I don't have data to back it up, but probably about less than five percent of the applicants that I would ask that question had the right answer that would come right out and say, Oh, I'd ask the guess what they want to do. I assume that they may want to go to Disneyland, Rodeo, drive the beach, but they may just want to hole up in their hotel room all weekend and we don't know that until we ask. And that whole starting conversations without jumping in with your assumptions and trying to provide what somebody wants, or what you think they want, or whatever it is, come into conversations and your communication with curiosity first, with with the whole mindset of wanting to learn more about how the other person sees it, what's their perspective, what their desires are, etc. So that's one of the main things that have stayed with me, so that I learned since those early days with regard to communication that even now I I stand by. Listening is so ortant and I always say to people when I hire them, I'm always looking for someone who's worked the front of the line, you know, whether they were a server and a restaurant or at a front desk at a hotel, because they know how to work with the guests, they know how to make them an advocate there the first line and that first impression. I know that's not always an easy experience either as a staff member, and sometimes you have difficult clients, you know, a tough conversation. No one likes to have a difficult conversation. So let's kind of tweak this towards our internal teams. As a leader, and we know those difficult conversations are not fun, especially when right now our teams are so stressed out with this world around us. What advice do you have for those who need to make tough decisions thus have tough conversations? Yeah, love that question. I deal with this on a regular basis. So, first of all, I don't advise making decisions in a vacuum or in a silo. So we're even more siloed now and I'm not generally speaking, I don't like, as a leader, making a decision in a silo and I don't recommend decision making in Assilo. What I mean by that is, if you have a decision to make, and especially if it's a tough decision, it's a good idea. From my experience, and this is what I train it fierce to seek other perspectives, get other perspectives that are even different from your own, before you roll out that plan, that procedure, whatever it is decision that you're making, run it by other stakeholders first, because they may help you see gaps in that decision that you didn't see before. They may help you see how those decisions are going to affect other stakeholders that you didn't realize before. And, as you point it out, maybe if you are not as a leader so much client or customer facing these days, you certainly may want to run your idea by and get the perspective of those who are client facing and who are customer facing, who are guests facing, because your decision may affect the end user, may affect the client or the customer and you may not know how that's going to happen. So that's what I mean by not making a decision in a vacuum. Now sometimes we have to make decisions and we maybe it's you know, we're not able to run those ideas by a lot of people. Maybe that it's personal private information or it's just something we can't let out at the moment. But as best as possible I will seek out the perspective, and I recommend leaders do this as well,...

...seek out the perspective of other stakeholders that may be affected or that they have a different viewpoint or a different perspective than you personally. I think it's good. It has worked for me to invite the devil's advocate it to to give me their perspective on whatever decision I'm going to make, someone I know who's going to be critical of me, because that is going to help me make a better decision, if that makes any sense right. I want to know where are the gaps in my planning, my bride idea. It's really hard for me and, I would say, for probably a lot of human beings to look at our own selves and look at our thought processes objectively. Sometimes we need the perspective of others to help us see that. So that's my answer, that as much as possible, get different perspectives from your own before you make that decision. As much as possible, as much as you as you can, depending on what that decision is, especially, invite the devil's advocates especially. Sometimes I tell people invite the person, and what I say when I say invite, I mean invite into the conversation to share their perspective on your decision, the decision you're about to make. I would invite even those who, I'm thinking I would not want to invite because they may say something I don't want to hear or they may point out something that I'd rather not see because again, the company, my company, whoever it is I'm working for, whoever it is I'm responsible to in the decisions I'm making. I'm responsible for making the best possible decision not to be right. So at this is not about me being right. It's necessarily it's about me being making the right decision. And how do I make the best possible right decisions? By hearing other perspectives from other stakeholders to help me see the weak points, help me see the gaps that I'm not seeing or on the other side to help me see that. Yes, that's an excellent decision, Louis. We stand by that. It's going to rock. Go for it now again, I want to just you know the the the asterisk here is not always are we able to share this information with other stakeholders, but a lot of times we are, and when you have that opportunity, that's what I recommend. Get the perspectives of other people, see the gaps in your plan, the weak spots in your plan, tighten it up and you'll be more confident and you'll probably make the best decision. Would you say that's the steadfast rule of when it comes to communication with a team? Well, okay, then there's the other side, then communicating with the team. I forgot about that part. There's the flip side. So you've you've made your decision. Now you've got to communicate it with the team. So first keep it real, as we say, with fearce. Be as open, honest and transparent and authentic as possible, with as much information as possible. There's nothing worse that I've seen than hiding some facts or or, you know, glossing over things. And sometimes we have a hard message to deliver. Things are going to change. You have to be able to deliver that message. Now I mess I mentioned a few minutes ago my former HR director, Carol Clark. She was so good at this and I remember in the s when we were doing a big shift with the Ritz Carlton. We were moving towards a whole new philosophy, if you will, of management and was called total quality management, to tqm. And when we were making that shift they got rid of a lot of middle managers. They shifted those responsibilities from those middle managers to team members. We were selfdirected work teams. That's a big shift, it's a big paradigm shift, that's a big mental shift and many people didn't want to work in that new kind of an organizational culture. And how Carol Clark delivered that message. I remember it so well and this is going back to your question, how can you deliver the message? And I said be as transparent and open as possible, and she took emotion out of it. And so how she presented that to us? I remember being there at the meeting saying and she told us, look, leaders have made a decision. Here's why they made this decision, here's what's in it for you, here's what you're going to benefit from this, and I remember her laying out all the benefits. We're going to have a lot more power and decisionmaking. We know best...

...how to run this team and so we'll be able to run the team at the end of it. She said, I understand that's some of you have some thinking to do, that this may not be the direction you want to go, and that's fine, but please understand the bus has left the station. We are moving in this direction. So I'm open to having a conversation with you. Let's talk about it. If this is something that you're, you know, not too certain about, I'm here for you, but please know this is the direction we're going and I'm here for you. So I look at that and that's an example of for me, how I'm trying to shape my communication when I'm having to deliver messages to my teams, especially the difficult messages, hard messages, and offering support, just like Carol. Did you know at the end of it all, I'm here for you. Let's talk. How can I support you with this? I think that's such a great example too, because you have to make decisions that you know not everyone's going to agree with, and having them listen and understand that this is the direction and you have another option and we can talk through that as well, shows that you're still being empathetic about the situation but still staying on course. So yeah, great example and that's kind of great transition to what I want to talk about with delegation. I think part of that communication, conversation really you lay out the plan and next up you have the delegation of tasks. So many leaders just struggle with delegation. I would love to hear your thoughts. We all laugh because we all have the problems with it. You know, it's the little bit not claimed when it comes to communication and delegation. Do you have any advice on how to marry those two pieces together in the most thought provoking way for the team to really get ownership of activities. Yes, yes, I love this question and I'll tell you why, if I can just share an example that I had that didn't go so well. That focus my attention on this whole idea of delegation. About ten years ago, I had a boss come and tell me, Louise, I've got this project for you. You would be awesome at it. I know you would love it. It's right up your alley and it's super important to the organization. And I as I'm getting excited, she pulls it away from me and says, but I can't give it to you. You're already working twelve hours a day. I need your full attention and focus on this. And not only that, you're not delegating, you're not freeing up stuff that you really that are not that are stuff is on your plate that is no longer the best use of your time. That's one side of it. The other side of it is least you are not developing your people. So that was a piece of feedback for me that was really tough for me to take in the moment. And as I reflect on this ten years later and continually, you know, over the last in years of reflected on that that was a best piece of feedback and advice I've ever gotten. So with that, now, what I've learned, what works best is not to Della dump. First of all, that's a term I like to use, Della dump. I think we're all familiar with that. I got too much on my plate. I'm going to give some of this to Angie. Angie, this is now yours. Let me know how I can support you. Go and now I freed up stuff on my della dump. How does I feel? I like that. Della dump. Della dump. Have you ever, Auntie? Have you ever been della dumped on, and what do you feel? What I have a hundred percent, a hundred percent. Yes, okay, and to be honest, I've probably have done it to other people. So I'm excited here. And how we get out of this line frame? So yes, so this is where it requires a little insight, little thought and, you know, understanding relationships and strengths and talents and interests and all of that. What works best is see, first of all, here's how I do it and here's how we trained it with fearce. Look at your look at what's on your plate as a leader, as if you were looking at your budget, like we all do at the end of the month. I think you know, look at your budget. Where am I spending too much money that I don't need to spend? I don't know, happy hours, starbucks or whatever it is, and then we make adjustments. I don't need to be spending too...

...much money there right I need to shift it over here. In the same way, we can look at our time. What's no longer the best use of my time as a leader and who could I delegate that role or that responsibility or whatever it is too on the team who would welcome it because it helps them progress in their career? So that's where the conversation begins with myself looking at who might want to do this or who maybe, although they may not want to do it, what accepted to do it and be glad to take it on because it will help them progress in their career or they just simply love doing it. So rather than Della dumping, there's a thought process that go the process that goes into it beforehand, and then there's the conversation that you need to have with the person, and that conversation, I would hope people leaders like myself would have been developing relationships with their team members up to the up to that point before the conversation. So hopefully you've got a good relationship. You know that person's strengths, their skills, what they want to do in their career, what their goals are for their career, etc. And with all of that I'll sit down and talk to them and say hey, look, I've got something here that's no longer the best use of my time. I think, from what our previous discussions have indicated with regard to your career path, your skills, what you're passionate about, this might be something good for you. I think you'd be good at it. Sounds like you probably like doing it. It's important to the Organization for sure, and this would possibly give you more visibility within leadership so that they can see what awesome decisions you make and you know what expertise you bring to the table. Will give you some exposure and will help you on your career path. What do you think? And then we have the discussion. They may say no, not into it. Well then I have to turn around and go back to the drawing board. But it's a discussion and that it's a conversation and that's my point. It requires some foresight, some thinking, understanding your people, knowing your people on your team with their skills, talents, wishes, goals are, and trying to align that as best as possible with what's no longer the best use of my time. and where it gets tricky. Allow me to say this as well. It just came to my mind. What's tricky is for US leaders and human beings in general, we're reluctant to let go of things and delegate things, task responsibilities that we really like doing and we're good at, but it may not be, may no longer be the best use of our time, if that makes sense. So we have to really check our context, our own selves, like Hey, I don't want to give this up, I love doing it, it's fun and I'm good at it and I get a lot of, you know, accolades for it. But is it now, in my current role, with the decisions that I have to make and my career path, is this still the best use of my time? And if not, who might want to take this on and it will be a benefit to them? That's a great example. I know I've done that before with some past team members. There are projects I just really loved to do, but I know it was time a to train them and be to delegate that activity and really empower them to take it on. So that is just part of the process of becoming a better leader, is knowing how you have to educate and train the people, train, train the bench. Essentially, you know you want to keep moving and doing your thing, so that makes perfect sense. With that, I want to kind of shift gears a little bit. We talked a lot about communication and then how that feeds into culture. And let's be honest, we both know that company struggled with culture even prior to the pandemic Worr, and we know that cultures off. It's been one of those things people you either really thrive in a culture or you're in a really toxic workplace. With teams being remote right now, so many leaders have had to shift their mindsets. And then you have those other companies who are like we've been remote forever, like, welcome to the party. What do you who do you think the biggest challenge is right now for the teams who are not used to being remote, even knowing that we've been doing it for a couple months now, but it has maybe networked to their biggest potential. What advice do you have for the leaders...

...who have to lead those teams right now? Yeah, also, I love these questions and I can go in so many directions, so let me try to align my thoughts your first of all, what I'm noticing. I don't have data to back this up, as I often say, but just anecdotically, I can say as I've observed in the last six, sevent eight months since covid people really are missing the human connection. Those people who used to work in a physical location. They'd go in the coffee room with one another, they'd go out for coffee with one another, they'd go out the happy hour after work, they'd run by each other's offices or desks to run ideas by them and collaborate. All that has stopped pretty much. And at our core, science has proven this. Nobel prizes were awarded for this. At our core, we are we're emotionally driven creatures. We human beings are emotionally driven creatures. We make decisions from an emotional standpoint first, rationally second, and we crave connection. Generally speaking, there are those humans that are fine with being hermits, but generally speaking, we human beings crave connection and that is missing. So what's happened and what I've noticed is, and what I've been seeing out there and blogs and articles and you know other venues like that, with people like us, what's happened is is people are missing out on that, they're missing those connections and it has turned into this work remote re ality tends to or has tended to turn into something about. You know, meetings are agenda based, agenda driven. We're going to get to the task at hand. Okay, are we good? Great, all right, then until the next meeting. In other words, everything is agenda based, work focus, project FOCUS, deadline focused, and we're missing out. And what used to happen in the office when we used to be able to swing by someone and just say, Hey, I was the wedding on the weekend. How the kids? And so my first piece of advice is it's just general. I'm a conversationalist and this is what I teach and so this is what I stand by. Start a conversation and check in with your remote team members, whether you're a leader with a title or not, check in with people and if even if you have a meeting scheduled, allow for five or ten minutes, at least during this period of time, while we still are in uncertainty, allow for ten or fifteen minutes for chickens. Just hey, how's it going? What's going on in your world? How are you dealing with all this? What's keeping you up at night? I'll share with you what's keeping me up at night. And then everything gets back to the human level. We've connected, we've related, we we empathize with one another. Oh, yeah, you too. I know right, it sucks. Right, I know I'm going through that too. Ah, WE'VE RE established a little bit of a human connection here, and the empathy helps, and the care and the concern, the genuine support we offer one another, and then we can get to the task at hand. Then we can get to the meeting, the bullet points, the agenda. But I would say even then, schedule, just check ins or just popped in. If you see someone green lights on on their zoom chat or whatever chat system you may be using, pop in, hey, how's it going? Just saying hi, because that's what's missing. Now the second piece of advice, you know, just to keep the relationships warm and keep the empathy and keep the connection, the human connection going. The second thing is I mentioned earlier not making decisions in a silo. Well, now it's even easier for us to make decisions in a silo. I don't have an office with a, you know, a power or a partner or a wonderful coworker I can just run over to and say, Hey, what do you think of this? Right? So now it's even more important. The onuses on US leaders to really make sure we engage and collaborate. And so what I mean by that is if I'm needing to make a decision, we were talking about this a little bit earlier. If I'm making a decision, and I said earlier, don't make those decisions in silos as much as possible, I would engage my team members that are working virtually and remotely and I would start with a lowhanging fruit. It wouldn't be a big earth shattering decision that I need to make or company shifting decision that I need to make, but I'd start with some lowhanging fruit that we can make take decisions we can make together collaboratively as a team. Could be how do we structure our team meetings? So we need to restructure our team meetings how do we, you know, as a team, do this, that or the other, and then engage in a collaborative conversation with five people,...

...six people, you know, a handful of people on your team, all on a call sharing their perspectives on what we should do, what you know, how should we change the team agenda or whatever it is is the topic we're working on. You get collaborative ideas, you can make the best decision possible and you can also give credit to the team when you make that decision, and then it's a success. For example, you make a good decision and we reap lots of benefits from that decision being made as a team and as a company. And then when me, the leader, gets the accolades or the light shined on me, Oh what a great decision Luis made, I get to now enrich the relationships even more with my team members by telling everyone, Hey, I could have done this without the collaborative efforts of the team. This was a team decision that we made. So my team also deserves the accolades on that. So that's another way I feel it connects people. It's that human connection we want. It's having people chiming into the decisions being made and sharing in the glory and the successes and the celebrations after that. So to suggestions, everyone check in with your people on a human level. Forget the agenda. Just check in. How are you? I'm just, you know, just checking in. I care about us, I care about you. Tough Times are going through. Isn't it weird out there? Right? I know, strange times, right, how you doing? And then try to collaborate as much as possible when you can, with little decisionmaking, sharing those decisionmaking. And last thing I want to say on that too, that I missed when we were talking a few minutes ago about this is sometimes, when you do have these collaborative discussions and you get the different perspectives, as we call them stripes at fierst, because they're like stripes on a beach, while you get people's different stripes on how we should proceed or what decision we should make, sometimes you still have to make the decision and it's your own decision and it's not based on that collaborative discussion. You've major decision and you have to thank the team members for their collaboration, thank them for their input and for sharing their their perspectives and here's the decision I'm going to make. Here's why I'm making it, as much as I can tell you, and I still want to keep the collaboration going, so we'll have more collaborative discussions as we move forward, but right now I just want to let you know that I am making this decision and I appreciate all of your collaborative conversation around it, but this is the decision I'm making and here's why and here's what they'll get out of it as well. So I hope that's helpful. Those are my two suggestions. Great suggestions and part of having a diverse workforce is part of that collaborative effort. You've insaide, the devil in the the room, the one who has two different ideas, getting all those different ideas. So good out of that collaboration because they'll push you to the next level and you can push them as well. Yeah, but, and I do say but, and I'm usually I yes and person all right, but we are seeing maybe some people who are not motivated right now to do collaborative work. They are whether getting zoomed out, whether they are trying to the stile of themselves to protect their work, for their job, for their worth, if that is even a thing. People are kind of seeing that lack of motivation. So how are we supposed to motivate our teams right now, in this moment? What advice do you have for the leaders out there? I'll go right back to what I've said already. First of all, starts with a conversation. Check in with that person that you feel is not being motivated. I've seen it happen just recently with some teams that I'm working with as well. There's, you know, it's natural. We're in on certain times. This is a weird year, let's say. Let's admit it. We've not gone through anything like this before, so we have to be okay with that. People are going to feel uncomfortable, people are going to not feel motivated from time to time or for a stretch of time. We have to allow that and accept it. It is what is. Second thing is, as I said, it starts with a conversation. So as a leader, for me again, I check in with that person. How you feeling? Where's your head at with this? I'm I'm sensing, I could be...

...wrong, but I'm sensing some things off. I'm sensing a difference in the motivation that you've had since, you know, earlier this year, precovid or whatever it is. Let's talk what's going on. you start there with curiosity, with the intention to really listen and really understand and just keep asking questions and you'll get more information from them, hopefully, as to what they're feeling, why they're feeling it, even if it's I don't know what I'm feeling. I just know this is weird and I'm uncomfortable and yes, I'm not motivated. Okay, you have that conversation, you show the empathy, you show the support, and then level set. Okay, what are you working on now? Here's you know, some other things that I think that I, you know, like to delegate or talk with you about, or things that I think you'd be good at that you might want to do, but I understand you're not feeling motivated right now. Where's your level? And then you come to some sort of agreement and a check in. So okay. So for right now, what you're telling me is you're just you're just feeling weird, you're nervous, your you got stress, whatever it is. You just don't have that motivation and you don't know when you're going to come out of it. Okay, that's fine. I'm good with that. Let's just let this ride. Let's check back in two weeks. Here's what you have on your plate right now. How you feeling about that? Are you good with that? How can I support you with everything that's on your plate right now? And that's fine. Take it easy, man. Please make sure you're taking care of yourself, get your rest, do what you need to do to take care of yourself, because I value you, I value what you bring to the team and I am here for you and I'm going to support you. So just do what you need to do. We will check back in two weeks and see where we're at with it. That's how I would handle that and you made that clear in the beginning. To you said you self care to take care of others. So it is so important and we remind our teams to fill their cup first. BEFEAH, I can fill others. I just want to say sorry and gentleman, interrupt. I just got to say because that has, excuse the expression, bit me in the butt before as a leader. Will come on, we got to do this. Let's go let's go. I may have all the energy in the world, I may be motivated a hundred percent, but other people may not be, and then I burn them out and then I'm really up the creek later, because now I got someone who's called out, sick for a while or perhaps quit or took a leave of absence, and now on short staff. Now I got a scramble. So I've learned the hard way. Know if somebody's telling me what Wibbo, I had a back off. I need some downtime here. Please take care of yourself, because we're going to need you and we value I value you. I want you to be a strong member of this team. So please take care of yourself. Great Advice. As we approach the end of this podcast, we like to end every episode with a question that ties to the mission of building leaders worth following here at leader cast. In your opinion, Luise, what makes a leader of worth following? Gosh, what makes a leader worth following? For me, and I'm going to say this, and I don't mean to be cheeky about it, but there's leaders with titles and there's leaders without titles, and some of the leaders that have really mentored me and have stood out for me didn't necessarily have the title, but what they do all have is a track record of good relationships. And how do they build those relationships? By showing empathy, by being really good listeners, by not always trying to manage from a top down kind of a way. They have a service attitude. They definitely want to serve the team members in any way that they can. What do I mean by serve? Support them, help them in their career growth, doing the best that they can in their current roles. They're good listeners and they don't always jump to give advice. I know that sounds weird, but a lot of times I've asked leaders, what would you do? How would you do it? I know you were in this role before. I've got this situation. What do you think I should do? And I look back and reflect now and the the the leaders that were worth following for me were the ones that help me learn on my own, and sometimes even by making mistakes and...

...falling down on my knees a little bit and scraping my knees and picking myself up. They withheld the giving of advice to see what I might do, what decisions I might make, and want lessons I might learn. So for me to wrap it up again, they have a track record of good relationships. They are open, they're good listeners, they show empathy, their supportive and they don't always give advice. They help others learn on their own. In today's episode it became pretty clear that communication is vitally important to being a leader. We've always known this, but when you look at delegation, culture, motivation and other factors that go into being a great leader, all roads point back to communication. Louise clearly communicated that with his examples, lessons and stories. I hope you enjoyed them as much as I did. If you want to connect with Louise, you can find him on Linkedin. Fierce ink also has additional resources free to check out. There's a www fierce inccom forward slash podcast if you want to learn more. In addition, if you want to cover more of the topics that we spoke about today, you can find this content from leader cast through our blogs, newsletters, wominers, videos and more a leader castcom. If you like what you heard today, please share, rate and review this podcast. Check out our previous episodes and subscribe so you never miss the latest. Again, thank you for tuning in to the leader cast podcast. If celebrating anything in the next week or so, leader cast wishes you good health and safety. Now go be a leader worth following. According to research from Edelman and Linkedin, almost sixty percent of decision makers said that thought leadership led them to awarding business to an organization. Sweet Phish media helps marketing teams turn their executives into industry thought leaders. Learn more by visiting sweet phish MEDIACOM leader cast. Thanks for tuning in to the leader cast podcast. To ensure that you never miss an episode, subscribe to the show in your favorite podcast player.

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