You’ve just completed a great project, met the deadlines and brought it in on budget. You are feeling good but nobody says a word? As days go by nothing comes back and you start to doubt your success. The internal dialogue ramps up to a point where you become totally focused on whether or not you did indeed complete a successful project. You venture to ask a couple of questions of the people from whom you may have expected some positive feedback but the bemused looks set you back even further so what’s going on?
Unconscious behaviour patterns are playing out here. You may have a high need for recognition and appreciation because your external reference system means you value other peoples opinions, external qualifications etc in order to measure your own success. Internally referenced people, on the other hand, measure their success against their own internal measures. They include the word ‘I’ to a large degree in their conversation and don’t need others to tell them they have done a good job. They will be bemused when externally referenced people ask for feedback and unconsciously view it as ‘needy’.
No feedback needed, thanks
Internally referenced people don’t take kindly to feedback because unconsciously they have a high degree of certainty that they are right (they are not always of course!). The unconscious thinking is that ‘if I don’t need feedback then nor does anyone else’. Consequently they don’t give it out and if they do it can sounds contrived and awkward. This type of behaviour can often come across as ‘confidence’ and will invariably help the internally reference person up the promotion ladder. They can also be very hard to give feedback to so here is a tip for you –
If you want to give feedback to an internally referenced person start with ‘Of course you probably already know this ……..’
A common thread often found in organisations is where managers and leaders have been promoted after demonstrating skill and success in operational roles. Unfortunately, many then appear to struggle to get to grips with the new role, and seem to lack some of the necessary skills and competencies required to make the step to becoming a successful leader for their teams.
The behaviours and resulting ramifications can often be seen and felt in the day to day workplace. Despite this, it can be difficult to pinpoint where to focus to help these people to develop more effective behaviours and strategies to improve these skills and bring better success in their role.
What could that focus look like?
This is a group overview of 40 managers, who have been objectively measured against 10 Leadership competencies.
If you were to look at the 9 areas of leadership competency in the graph below… which areas in particular would you say need some focus?
If you just look at the red areas then ‘Impact and Influence‘, ‘Leading People‘ and ‘Communication‘, in the first instance, perhaps? And then maybe ‘Achievement Orientation‘ and ‘Resilience and Perseverance‘. There doesn’t really seem to be any issues with ‘Problem Solving‘ skills or ‘Learning Agility‘. There’s a lot that could be improved across the amber areas as well to bring those skills up.
What could that look like and feel like in this organisation?
Perhaps a group of managers who are great at resolving issues, fighting fires, and taking learnings from experiences, success and mistakes and applying it to new situations.
However, perhaps some of them may not be so great at taking the lead in achieving the company’s mission and objectives, influencing and engaging their teams to contribute towards the company’s goals or communicating effectively with their teams to let them know what is expected of them.
Maybe a group of managers where some may have been promoted because they are good at their job – but haven’t yet been able to develop the leadership skills they need in their more strategic and influencing role.
And so if you look at the individual list view of those 40 managers below, who would you say could really benefit from some development and support to be able to better succeed in their role?
Clearly, everyone can always benefit from development and support. In this case, it would probably be helpful to get a better understanding of what is going on with Tuan Nyugen. And it would be worth looking at what additional development would be helpful for Adela Olga, Annalisa Elba, Shelby May and Minerva Dixon to improve their leadership skills.
It’s also quite easy to see who could make up a cohort for some skills development around ‘Impact and Influence‘ (last column), or Communications skills (2nd to last column).
And maybe it is apparent which managers could be considered for a benchmarking success exercise to support succession planning and recruitment plans. leaders skills and competencies
Visualise your Group Data
This is just a snapshot of the high-level Organisational Analytics data available just across these 10 Leadership competencies. You can also get data for your people and your organisation on:
Culture of your organisation
Individual’s alignment with your organisation’s core values
Individual and collective engagement factors and fulfilment levels of those engagement factors
Collaboration and Team competencies
Emotional Intelligence competencies
Remote Working competencies
How helpful would this data be for informing your people development plans, culture and engagement programmes and succession plans?
You can find out more about Organisational Analytics here. leaders skills and competencies
If you would like to discuss how Organisational Analytics can help support your business objectives and people plans please contact Pat Hutchinson: firstname.lastname@example.org or on 07768 922244
Communication is one of the most important skills a successful leader can develop. Effective communication is the tool to inspire, align a team around common goals, build trust and negotiate delicate situations.
Ineffective communication can leave teams feeling out of the loop and lacking in confidence and motivation. It can even result in a complete breakdown in trust between leader and employee/team. This in turn has a huge impact on productivity and can result in absenteeism, raised levels of sickness and staff churn. If you happen to work for a visionary company who recognize the importance of effective communication you will have been on the receiving end as well as seen the benefits of training in such skills.
Here are 5 areas you could consider if you want to do a bit of work on your own communication skills and style.
What do you feel you do well? Where could you do a bit better? And what could you put in place to help with that?
5 tips to improve your communication skills
How our communication is received will depend on the perception and viewpoint of the person receiving it. This means that it can be open to interpretation. However, the intention and the interpretation can often be miles apart. It is important to remember that it is the interpretation and not the intention that triggers action. So, if we want that action to be positive and progressive, we must take the utmost care with our communication.
You can read more on what effective communication can look like in this blog.
Are you interested in how we can help with developing this and other leadership skills for yourself or your team? Please get in touch at email@example.com or on 07768 922244
In my work as a leadership facilitator, I often work with organisations who include ‘Trust’ or ‘Trustworthiness’ in their company values. This is a worthy value indeed and is often described in terms of accountability, responsibility for outcomes, transparency and supportiveness – again all very virtuous. So why is it that when I ask groups of employees about their company values, they can only just about remember them and find it difficult to describe them in meaningful terms? Of course, the first reason is sometimes obvious – they have been imposed on them from above and employees have not been given the opportunity to engage with the values and work out what they mean in terms of behaviour. In which case they remain just words that appear on the walls of the organisation or on the website but not in the hearts of the employees.
But let’s take a deeper look –
In reality, as an employee, you are asking me to trust my fellow employees to complete projects and tasks that are going to keep both internal and external customers happy. Seems simple enough? So, what gets in the way? Perhaps a delve into unconscious behavioural preferences might give us some answers. The following continuums of preference will help us gain some insights.
Specifics – Big picture
People who prefer to work in the detail of a project are unlikely to trust the person with a big picture perspective to ‘do the job as well as I can’. The big picture perception is that ‘this person will never get it done because he/she is so bogged down in the detail so I can’t trust them to get it done within the deadline’.
Internal Reference – External Reference
Internally referenced people don’t need others to tell them the way things are going or whether something is going to work – they simply ‘know’. They are not always right of course but that’s ‘just the way it is’. Externally referenced people measure their success externally i.e. someone else’s validation or a measure such as a degree, medal or certificate. Internally referenced people see this as ‘flakey’ as externally referenced people often ask for feedback. So, trust flies out the window here too. Externally referenced people can view the internally referenced guy/gal as arrogant and ‘can’t be told’ so is obviously untrustworthy.
Procedures – Options
Procedural people get things done by following a procedure which has either been tried before or has been clearly laid out for them.Options people review different choices and will often rewrite new procedures, much to the annoyance of the procedurals. Definitely can’t be trusted because they change their minds!Procedurals on the other hand, from the perspective of the person who prefers choice, can’t be trusted to get creative and come up with new ideas and innovations!
Considerers – Doers
Considerers like to take their time to consider every aspect of a project before setting off. ‘Oh we’ll never get this off the ground’ shout the doers. ‘If we want it done by the deadline considerers can’tbe trusted!’ ‘Woha – hold back’ shout the considerers to the doers. ‘We need to think this through – if you are just going to take off, we will make mistakes and get it wrong’. Definitely can’t be trusted.
And of course, there are many more unconscious patterns that make us either unconsciously trust or mistrust people. These are extreme examples but nonetheless common in organisations and at grass roots level are far more dominant than the values passed down from above. So now we have conflict and are in need of an answer.
The answer is simple – recognition and acceptance. Recognising these patterns and valuing them all is paramount to success. Put a detail and global person together and they will come up with an excellent answer. A procedural person will put an options idea into practice and follow it through beautifully. But trust will only come about through awareness of and capitalisation on, behavioural preference!
If you would like to know more about behavioural preferences and how they affect our results please call Pat on 07768 92224 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Pat Hutchinson is the co-author of Brilliant NLP, the Brilliant NLP Workbook and How to be Confident with NLP. She is also the author of How to Sell with NLP all published by Pearson Education. She has been working with leaders using NLP for 21 years. For more information about Pat please see her Linked In profile