Some people don’t like to be told what to do. They want to decide for themselves. Depending on how you say & do something (or don’t say & do it), your ideas will be considered or immediately dismissed by them. When people are in this mode, they are have an Internal Motivation Pattern.
When people are in Internal Mode, they like gather information and evaluate it for themselves and hate having someone decide for them. In fact, they love to make their own decisions, based on what is important to them.
So here are the Top Ten Things to Avoid Saying to an Internal
Words That Close Minds
1. You should …… (almost guarantees they won’t)
2. I need to talk to you. (especially unhelpful to say to your partner in life)
3. I have the solution to your problem.
4. I know what you did wrong.
5. I know why that won’t work.
6. I told you so.
7. I have a better idea.
8. You should have an open mind about this.
9. Here’s what everyone thinks about what you did/do/will do.
10. No one is doing that any more.
Top Ten Suggested Things to Say to an Internal
Words That Open Minds
1. I have an idea that I’d like to run by you to find out what you think.
2. May I make a suggestion?
3. What would you think if we ……?
4. When you are deciding about X, what are the most important things?
5. I have an idea that may not be completely useless.
6. Here’s what I think….. what is your opinion?
7. You said that X, Y, and Z were important, so that’s why I’d like to suggest ….
8. Here is something that you may wish to consider.
9. Here is something that you may wish to avoid.
10. You be the judge.
It’s interesting to note the differences between the two approaches. The first list is mainly about deciding for the other, while the second encourages the other person judge for his/herself.
What other differences do you detect between the two lists?
With thanks to Shelle Rose Charvet
Eisenhower Was a Very Astute Man. And did you know that he came up with the Urgent/Important Matrix before Dr Stephen Covey? I didn’t, until I was reading the ILM (Institute of Leadership and Management) magazine Edge several years ago.
Eisenhower said ‘An intellectual is a man who takes more words than is necessary to tell more than he knows.’
The Urgent/Important Matrix is about using time effectively, not just efficiently, and in my experience the more effectively you use time the more efficient you become
In this day and age there just never seems to be enough time. Is this really true?
How often have you taken time out to ‘Stop and Stare’? And perhaps realise what you are doing is getting you nowhere. We’re anxious, we can’t concentrate, everything gets in the way, and then, we simply blow. We tell ourselves that we can do so much because we have so many ‘labour saving’ devices, smartphones, PCs, laptops, we can be contacted anywhere at any time.
In spite of all these gadgets and online calendars (that everyone can set us up appointments with (if we let them) – do we really mange our time efficiently?
Do we spend our time on things that are important and not just urgent? It’s important to distinguish between important and just urgent.
- Important activities have an outcome that leads to the achievement of your goals.
- Urgent activities demand immediate attention, and are often associated with the achievement of someone else’s goals (ah had you noticed that?).
We often concentrate on just urgent activities. The things that make the most noise, the things that demand attention because the consequences of not dealing with them are immediate.
The Urgent/Important Matrix is a useful tool for thinking about this.
Eisenhower said, ‘What is important is seldom urgent and what is urgent is seldom important.’ This so-called “Eisenhower Principle” is purported to be how Eisenhower organized his tasks. Dr Stephen Covey made the idea more public in his business classic, “The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People”. Covey called it the “The Urgent/Important Matrix” It is something I use myself regularly and I encourage my clients to use it too, because it works in reminding us what is really important.
The Urgent/Important Matrix is a powerful way to use to think about priorities. Using it helps you prevent the natural tendency to focus on urgent activities, so that you learn to keep enough time to focus on what’s really important. This is the way you move from “fire fighting”, into a position where you can grow your business and your career.
This is how it works:
Divide an A 4 page into 4 as below
Deadline driven projects
Recognising new appointments
Interruptions, some phone calls
Some mail, some reports
Proximate, pressing matters
Trivia, busy work
Some phone calls
Assess the importance to all the activities on a scale of 1 to 5
Remember Eisenhower also said: ‘Leadership – the art of getting someone else to do something that you want done because he wants to do it.’ (Words that Change Minds – the LAB Profile – the language of influence is useful for facilitating this)
When people see you are clear about your objectives and boundaries, they will generally not ask you to do ‘not important’ activities in the future, and at best do it themselves or find someone else.
I read somewhere recently ‘do the hardest work first’, that most great achievers take onthe difficult work of practice in the mornings, before they do anything else. Ah so that’s why I prefer to exercise in the morning because we tend to move away from pain and toward pleasure, so for me in the evenings lounging around is preferable. Of course mornings are also when I have more energy and am less likely to be distracted. Not that the distraction is necessarily negative, but other people will have demands on my time, their need might be greater than me. The client in despair (I need to listen and advise), the supplier who wants me to pay them (we negotiate), the trainee who suddenly has sent me some work in, that they need me to give feedback on (either before they take the next step or they might have made a choice that is not necessarily the right one).
So I need to do the hardest work first, in terms of the Language and Behaviour Profile, I can be both towards and away from, I do weigh up the consequences (not all the time – I’m human after all) and evaluate is that a potentially good decision? I’m motivated both by what I can achieve and sometimes will achieve so I’m also motivated by possibilities and options. Too many options and we do nothing, here’s an idea, there’s an idea, how about this idea? If you are someone likes lots of ideas some of the time, or if certain circumstances it can be difficult for you to make a choice, or you never make a choice and if you work with other people, those other people can be left behind. Uncertain of what they are supposed to do with all the opportunities you have given them, especially when they were working on getting something else finished. A little follow through on your behalf would be good, otherwise the others are overwhelmed, or they just give up and walk off.
Too much time spent on the “what ifs” usually leads to inertia, stagnation, being stuck, especially if you like detail and get lost in the detail, it becomes difficult to find your way out of the maze. Add to that if you need other people to tell you if you’ve done a good job and there’s no one there in the maze with you then you could be stuck for ever in despair. On the other hand if you know yourself that something is wrong here and you spend a lot of time looking for things to confirm that then you’ll be even more stuck.
Just do the hardest work first, get it out of the way, get on with it, get your finger out! Stop saying I can’t, if only, I need this, I need someone else to, I have to.
Consider this there are some things you do really easily, quickly, with aplomb – do you see these things in some way? Do you hear sounds in your head about these? Do you have emotions or feelings in your body about them? Do you taste something in your mouth? Do you smell something? Do you talk to yourself about these things? And whichever one of those you do, how do you use your internal representations to make them appealing? Think about this.
Then consider those things you find hard to do, yet it would be useful for you to do them, how do you represent these things to yourself, well one of them anyway, let’s not overdo it here;) What happens when you change the way you represent (think/feel/see)this to make things more appealing?
Particularly in today’s economic climate where companies and organisations are being asked to downsize, make cuts, lose jobs – there is the need for an effective methodology that has been tried and tested, and one that also gives options to ensure that there is the “right mix of people” for the job. Soft skills are sometimes hard to learn and often underestimated. Required job skills can be trained either on the job or in other ways. But personalities sometimes will just clash.
How can this be made easier? Is there a magic wand? In short there is no magic wand. Everything requires work, which is sometimes a problem as human beings just don’t want to do the work themselves, it “should” be someone else. After all we all know “it’s their fault” and we are entirely blameless.
There are tools and techniques – the often misunderstood NLP (Neuro Linguistic Programming) is not just a trail of techniques to make you feel good, change habits etc. But rather NLP is something that neither is whizz bang nor is it hocus-pocus. It’s actually about language and skilful use of language and recognising the language that is used by the people we want to influence. By becoming skilled in recognising this language and using skilful questioning techniques we can facilitate a climate of understanding, easing stress and becoming the company to work for. Not just because we are a company that pays well (it helps) or has good employee benefits. But a company or organisation that takes time out to listen, and respond in an appropriate manner and carry the things through that we promise.
Add the Language and Behaviour Profile to NLP and you have “Words that Change Minds” and it might be your mind not theirs that changes.
The LAB Profile Consultant:
- will design learning programs for you that actually change behaviour
- uses advanced LAB Profile® coaching methodologies to help clients shift
- helps you create marketing materials to attract more customers
- helps you solve your clients’ most difficult communication situations
- understands the language pattern combinations that make customers buy
- will help you create communication strategies that reach into people’s minds and hearts
- will show you how to predict and influence behaviour with individuals, teams and mass communication challenges
- knows exactly what language to use – or avoid – to motivate and inspire
- knows how to help you develop the right approach to lead your key teams and employees
- enables you to build high performance teams
- helps you manage strategic meetings and high stakes negotiations
- will diagnose corporate & team culture to introduce change, and make it stick