Monday, October 13th, 2014


As a top leader, you learn to tone it down.
You moderate enthusiasm, anger, commitment, all kinds of strong statements.
With reason.
You are one of the most watched, maneuvered, puzzled over, people in your company. Your words weigh too much. You have to be guarded.

You know the complications of the organizational reality.
You know there is very little black and white.
You want people to trust and respect your word.
You know the “truth” of a situation can change quickly.

The danger for you is becoming muffled and losing the power of your voice.
The tendency is to begin using lots of words to say very little.
The pit fall can be not knowing what you are truly thinking and feeling, much less saying. You don’t hear your own truth.

Some things I hear in my work that are not said.

–If you don’t make big changes, I will have to ask you to leave even though you are a top executive and colleague.  We have reached that point.  Are you clear about those changes?  Can you, will you make them?

–I am downright discouraged about what we can get done if we don’t stop passing the buck for bad results and here is who I see doing it. Stop it.

–I can’t be the only optimist for this group. And, by the way, it can’t be fake optimism. Like the fight or leave the fight.

–I need your help.

–I don’t see the answer. Yet. 

–Do we have the courage to do the right thing for our business and customers rather than being led by Wall Street?

–I’m sorry.

–Let’s reconsider.

–I’ve changed my mind.

–Collaboration seems so slow, it makes me nuts.

–I have to have fun and hope or this job isn’t worth it.

–I’m bored.

–I don’t enjoy my team.

One way to hear what you may not be saying is to have a colleague or coach with whom you can be honest, be blunt, be irreverent, be angry, be idealistic, be cynical and laugh your head off. So you can hear what you want to say and then choose to say it loud and clear.


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