If the answer is no from you or someone else and possibly this may be some of those people we categorise as Millennials (if you read my articles or online comments frequently you may be aware I’m not really into labels) you or they don’t know where you or they are going in life or at work it can be difficult to start. This doesn’t mean you need to have a goal or objective in the sense of a smart goal as stuckness can come from confusing advice (see more on this below) or the person can’t currently ‘see’ what the end is – there is a technique for that click here.
At times as someone recently admitted to me they couldn’t do what they wanted or what they were asked to do or set a goal because they really wanted to leave the job they were in. On the other hand those of us who know where we are going have a clear focus on that and can at time appear to trample over everyone else to get there. It can also be that you know what you don’t want, what you want to avoid. That’s okay a good coach can help you work with that without requiring you to turn it into something positive immediately.
For those labelled Millennials friends are their source of advice (but that’s not exclusive this will apply to some people of all ages), their reference point, these friends are generally important for helping them make decisions as is the plethora of online (mainly) media, where your friends may be people you have never met face to face (so they may not always be genuine). At times if input from friends (or people he/she knows) is missing the person may find starting difficult. It might be useful to work on how the person knows what to do/what is right when those sources are missing.
Recognition and appreciation from friends is important. Presented with all of the 21st century choices and alternatives and the opportunity to be creative is what keeps most young people going. Creativity comes in many forms and for those older ones amongst us creativity was often frowned upon unless you were in an artistic profession or you are someone who thought to hell with it, I’ll think outside the box anyway. There was always only a right way to do things in previous decades. Finding another way of doing things is often the best incentive for younger people nowadays and also for those of us needing or wanting to find the thing makes our heart sing.
The problem with this can be that distraction or diversion leads us to somewhere else and therefore even though started the project in hand s not completed. It might then be that deadlines are not met at all at times, at others dependent on the individual’s subconscious (LAB Profile©) patterns, deadlines are only met at the last minute.
How do you get people with these patterns to do something?
First tell them why what you have might be useful to them, their career, their company, or their friends.
Then tell them what it actually is you want them to say. Next say how this can be done and finally tell them what completing or doing this will say about them to others i.e. ‘Petra you mentioned that …. is important to you, something came to my mind that you might like. Have you noticed how many people are ………. It seems there are several alternatives open to you (name those alternatives or if you are watching the person and they appear not to like this suggestion or they actually say they don’t like the suggestions then say ‘first you do … then .. and ultimately to complete you…)
Finish with ‘You know you are really great at ………. and others will appreciate you for doing that’.
I hope you found that useful and if you would like to know more please contact me.
Tel. +44 (0) 7796 134081
Check out my website http://www.developingworks.com
In the last post I wrote about staff not taking initiative when a customer has a problem, of following a policy or procedure. ‘Company rules are…’, this is our policy on complaints’, ‘please read this and write into our head office’. The latter often heard at airports when the passenger with the problem wants and possibly needs a result – now.
An unhappy customer becomes impatient and is frustrated, they can get louder than usual (and don’t always realise this). They no longer care about rules and procedures, ‘gimme a result – now!’. Telling them what to do is a red rag to a bull. The worst case scenario is that they will rehash old wrongs.
And what do companies and those who train people in customer service do? They teach employees to be calm, to say phrases such as: ‘if you shout at me I will terminate this call,’ ‘don’t raise your voice at me.’ Such actions merely light the fire under the potentially explosive situation. Even if the customer appears to physically walk away, they will remember. They will remember every single thing you and your organisation ever did wrong and the experience will imprint on their memory and they will tell other people.
Two solutions – as a customer it really helps to say ‘I’m sorry to bother you, but could you help me please.’ This is so disarming to most people they will help you. Even the most intractable and jobsworth people will listen and often point you in the direction of a colleague who is known to be helpful. Taking on some of the blame yourself really helps. It might not be what you really want to do, but it can help.
When you’re providing the customer service, being aware of how the customer is reacting using appropriate LAB Profile® Influencing Language is really appropriate, useful, customer friendly and will get you repeat business (at times there are customers however who make their own completely internal decisions and cannot be retained – they are a minority).
The customer knows he or she is right, it helps therefore if you are in customer service to get the aggrieved customer to listen to and understand you, start where they are – ‘I know this must be really awful for you ………..,’ ‘you may want to consider’, ‘this may be in your best interest,’ ‘may I make a suggestion?’
They want you to break the rules for them, your policies and procedures are not of the slightest interest to them. They want you to do something now. And you might well be surprised to find that at times when you’ve agreed that the situation is terrible, and used some of the LAB Profile Internal Influencing Language you may want to consider, this may be in your best interests, may I make a suggestion?. You might be surprised if you say to this upset customers, whilst I can’t get you on a flight right now, I can get you a meal to begin with (and let them know you’re not supposed to do, it’s breaking the rules just for them but you’d like to help) and I can arrange for you to use a phone privately and I can locate your luggage and I can help you to find some accommodation. Then it’s highly possible that the upset customer will calm down and will listen to you and later will let everyone know how well their problem was treated.
Don’t just believe me, try it out for yourself or ask me for some info or clues on how to find out more about this. There are tools and a tried and tested methodology.
Rosie O’Hara is one of the UK’s foremost Trainers and Consultants of the Language and Behaviour (LAB) Profile®, Words that Change Minds. Her background is in mechanical engineering and the German language – more information on uses of the LAB Profile® for Team Building, HSE, Management, Negotiation, Market Research, Recruitment and in Executive Coaching and more contact Rosie on 07796 134081, 01224 900748, or 01309 676004 or take a look at the website click here
Anyone reading this will recognise themselves in either having been on the receiving end of this, or having had customers, clients, clients, delegates complain about this (in this case you might perceive the other person to be wrong).
This is not based on one particular case; rather it’s a summary of many different experiences, many of us will have had. Ever been somewhere where your needs are largely ignored because staff is getting things done’? Clearing tables, looking busy behind a desk or counters etc? The person you would like to help you or take you seriously is too busy focussing on the task rather than the person?
When as a customer you are unhappy, no one takes the initiative to put things right. It’s more the case that it seems too much trouble, or our procedures won’t allow that (airlines are good at this).
The member of staff of whom you expect help behaves as if you are just a downright nuisance. Sometimes they make the ‘right noises’ but then later you discover they did nothing? They say they’ll ‘pass the message’ but they don’t.
They repeatedly tell you what they can’t do, without offering any alternatives? An example of this and the previous question. We had a training room booked for 7 people on arrival there were twenty seven chairs in said room and two large tables (no tables required). We asked for the tables and twenty chairs to be removed. We were told ‘we have nowhere to put them,’ and asked ’are they really in your way?’and then ‘it makes it easier for us for later.’ I was told I was being unreasonable in my requests.
The staff whoever they are follows a set procedure, ‘read our customer policy’, ‘complain to our head office’, ‘I can’t do that for you’.
In terms of the Language and Behaviour Profile this translates as – Things, tasks, objects are more important than People – who pays the wages, affects your bottom line?
Staff are reacting – they will respond, so they don’t totally ignore you, but they are unwilling to take an initiative.
The staff and often company behaviour is that they believe that anyone who does not fit their expectations is completely out of line and odd.
These are people who would rather work alone, a common hiring error – companies ask for and hire people who can work ‘independently, at their own initiative’ – this leads to people whose preference is to work completely alone, i.e. in a darkened room with absolutely no customers around to bother them. Customers disturb them, get in the way of the things they have to do, keeping the place tidy, neat, looking good, and making life easy.
Staff only notice what is wrong or can’t be done in respect of the customer or client,
The staff are focussing on a process, rather than a service. On a linear progression that has no time, room or facility for dealing with complaints. The problem with this process is these people who have been hired to follow this process are people who once they have started, they cannot stop. Hell mend you if you interrupt them. They must get to the end of the process this is how they are made.
Recognise some of this in customer service you have received, or customer complaints you have had?
Next time ways to deal with this – from both angles
Rosie O’Hara is one of the UK’s foremost Trainers and Consultants of the Language and Behaviour (LAB) Profile®, Words that Change Minds. Her background is in mechanical engineering and the German language – more information on uses of the LAB Profile® for Team Building, HSE, Management, Negotiation, Market Research, Recruitment and in Executive Coaching and more contact Rosie on 07796 134081, 01224 900748, or 01309 676004 or consider the information on this website here
Do you like to be told what to?
Most of us don’t usually. We want to decide for themselves.
Depending on how we say and do something (or don’t say and do it), our ideas will be considered or immediately dismissed by the other person/other people. When people are processing life, the world and the universe in this way, they are have an Internal Motivation Pattern.
When people are in Internal Mode, they like to 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 (or someone who feels that way)
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 you deciding for the other person, while the second encourages the other person judge for his/herself.
Which list ‘makes you feel better’? Which list do you think would get you better results?
With thanks to Shelle Rose Charvet
For more info on Words that Change Minds please click here
A while ago someone asked me how did I remember things, more importantly how did I remember to take things with me after an event, training or meeting or what happened in that meeting. I’d like to share with you.
There’s a technique known as ‘Reframing’ to create a different meaning literally around something, for example to turn a bad experience into a good one, or to notice that there is actually something positive.
Here’s a simple way to do that.
A. Remember an occasion when or where you got angry.
B. Make a picture or image of this or imagine this having happened and see yourself in the picture.
C. Now put a frame around the picture or image.
How does your response to the situation change when you put a wooden frame around it? What about a metal frame? A multi-coloured frame. An oval frame? How about a colourful frame with balloons hanging from it?
And what do we do to remember things when we’ve walked through the door?
We need to make a conscious effort to stop briefly and think about the thing we want to do, or are going to, or are have been doing. And then we need to make a mental image of this thing and place it up to our left. And looking up to our left see this thing, this object, this person, this task, this memory, then imagine seeing it in colour and see it standing still. Making sure it’s still there, move on out of the room and when you’re out of the room and doing the next thing look up to your left and see this item, still standing there. And hey presto, you’ll remember.
If you find this tricky, practice. Only perfect practise makes permanent.
And for some people you might need to place this image up on your right.
Try it out and let me know what happens for you, then walking through the door will be much easier and your memory will improve.
Forgotten to catch up after a meeting or networking?
Well most of us do at times. Some of us believe making notes will help, not so good if you then lave all your info somewhere. I recently realised that I had left all my info from one networking meeting, neatly packaged on one place on the table in the room I had been in. Fortunately the info was still there.
According to an article in Scientific American online, which being scientific has lots and lots of references and could be (for me) a tad exhausting; when we walk through a door we forget. Well actually they were interested in why walking through a door makes us forget.
The article: Gabriel A. Radvansky, Sabine A. Krawietz & Andrea K. Tamplin (2011): Walking through doorways causes forgetting: Further explorations, The Quarterly Journal of Experimental Psychology, 64:8,1632-1645 (click here to read that) states that walking through a doorway causes what they call ‘an event boundary’ and we update our model of events in respect of what happened previously. They maintain that this ‘can reduce the availability of information in our memory for objects associated with the prior event. And then they do some scientific speak about how memory is essential (in my words) dependent on how or what we associate with the previous event. ? What does that mean, you might be asking? Well it means we need to remind ourselves in some way of what happened or was happening before we left the room.
So in my case above remembering to take all my info from the event happened because I generally (I stress the word generally) have a checking thing (or system) before I leave one place to go to another. We don’t always check because often deep in thought we move from one doorway to another and therefore onto something else.
If you would like to know more, please contact me Rosie O’Hara http://www.developingworks.com, http://www.rosieohara.com tel. 07796 134081 (What’sApp as well), 01224 900748, 01309 676004
Baby Boomers were born between 1946 and 1964 and form a larger cohort than the others I’ve previously written about. (Sometimes they are referred to Baby Boomers I and Baby Boomers II with the cut off year between being 1959.)
Certainly those born before 1959 can remember Martin Luther King and John F Kennedy, the Beatles and Elvis and other massive changes to the world of politics and the music industry.
Don’t underestimate the Baby Boomers, amongst Baby Boomers there are some powerful people in the world today who have made a lasting impact. This cohort includes such people as Bill Gates, Steven Spielberg, Madonna, Barack Obama, the Price of Wales, Vladimir Putin, Tony Blair, Benazir Bhutto, Angela Merkel, Ellen DeGeneres and many, many more.
The name was given to this cohort, no one knows by whom or when to describe the generations born after the Second World War, when populations worldwide experienced a boom in births. This boom due on the one hand to partners returning home and on the other hand to the start of movement of families, particularly in Europe to countries where they were either displaced as a result of war or to which they had moved as a result of labour shortages due to war. It was now safe to have children in so many ways. It is also important to understand however the British Baby Boom was not as vast (25%) compared to the US (40%) Baby Boom and circumstances in which the early cohorts in both parts of the world grew up were very different up until 1959 (in the UK there was still rationing to a great extent). Similar applies to continental Europe as well; the world was a more austere place.
The focus here is on communication. Baby Boomers value knowledge. They grew up with encyclopaedias. If you were very lucky and your parents could afford it (or a man came round and collected weekly payments) you had the whole 15 volumes of the Encyclopaedia Britannica in the UK or its equivalent elsewhere.
Baby Boomers value face to face communication and discussing knowledge or information with other people. For them face to face communication means in person, particularly when they want to do business. They may well be as good as younger people at using LinkedIn, Twitter, video communication etc., but for many other things they like to meet you in person.
People of this cohort are rational. In their eyes there has to be a reason for something having happened. They believe in ‘commonsense’. However what is commonness to me may not be commonsense to you. These traits are not always useful as we need Emotional Intelligence or soft skills to understand others better. See this link here for some potentially useful frames for everyday life and to understand ‘commonsense better.Baby Boomers like to negotiate, not just in business, but also in life, using rational thinking this may take longer.
Baby Boomers are prone to working long hours, you work until the job is done. Even though in the UK for Baby Boomers university education was free a far lower proportion of over 50s actually has a university degree and would therefore have been paid less for longer hours. They have also either not accrued a pension pot or one that is not generous, due to belief that the state would provide after all their years of hard work.
They are however more loyal to a company or organisation it can take a lot for some of them to change their loyalties. Loyalty is everything and money will motivate them to stay as opposed to younger generations who will move for more money and are not as loyal to a company or brand (there will always be exceptions). Baby Boomers are driven by the fact that their parents probably had little money and struggled to provide them with the material things they needed in a changing world. The change for them was just as monumental in their growing years as for other generations, but slower than in the current day and age. It has in some circumstances led to some Baby Boomers wanting and having everything material, facts that can lead to some bad press for Baby Boomers – in the words of Mike and the Mechanics in the song the Living Years ‘Every Generation Blames the One Before.’
So how would Baby Boomers like to be communicated with? You will find some who do not like change, some who may refuse to adapt. A major change once every ten years might work for them but they are happier when they take charge of the change themselves once every fifteen to twenty-five years. They like to hear what things have in common, what has not changed as well as how things are the same. Others will accept change once a year if the change is not drastic. They need change once every five to seven years. They like to hear that things are the same except more … less …better. They tend to resist major changes except when they are perceived to be gradual. Upgrades are okay because they are about an improvement new and different is not (think of those people you know who still have a mobile phone that’s like a brick and who has a smarter smartphone).
They like to talk about people and name them and meet with you regularly. They like to be given praise and told how valuable what they did or said was. They follow procedures and processes well. They value their own territory of responsibility and when needed will work together with others. They appreciate an understanding of others and how they are thinking and feeling (they don’t always get that right, because unless they have truly learned to understand others from the other person’s point of view, they only understand how they themselves would feel).
If you’d like to know more contact me Rosie O’Hara the Developing Works website, or via my Coaching Website tel. +44 (0) 7796 134081 (What’sApp as well), +44 (0)1224 900748, +44 (0)1309 676004. And please comment on this blog too.
Ever stopped and thought about the things you say to yourself either every day or on a frequent basis?
Phrases such as –
He’s a pain in the neck
I must have a hole in my head
I keep getting it in the neck.
They’re stabbing me in the back
I need a break
And have you noticed how sometimes these things manifest themselves in reality
How you have a sore neck, sore shoulders, a headache, back ache and you do get a break, but not the kind you were thinking of getting?
One of the NLP Operating Beliefs is –
The mind and body are one system
Mind and body interact and influence one another. It is not possible to make a change in one without the other being affected.
Therefore if we consistently talk about a problem, even if we say we don’t believe it’s a real problem, over time it will manifest itself as a problem in our bodies. And the reverse is true, sometimes the physical pain is our body telling us, ‘hello, you have a problem, listen to me your body, pay attention and do something about it.
The busy person who falls badly for example because they were rushing around doing too much and ‘bang’ they have an accident. The body’s way of saying ‘pay attention, give me some time.’
I once worked with a client who came to me about controlling his anger. His language was full of phrases such as ‘I see red all the time,’ ‘I get hot under the collar,’ ‘my blood boils,’ ‘my boss gives me smouldering looks.’ I suggested for his next session he write down all the phrases he used or thought about in respect of anger and come back with a list of the phrases. He phoned me and said there far too many and he just got even angrier and very hot thinking about them.
We did eventually work together on changing how he thought and what he said.
Recently I bumped into someone I hadn’t seen for a while and I asked; ‘How are you? How’s things?’ Immediately their shoulders slumped, their head moved slightly down and forwards and they give a little apologetic laugh. It was all actually very slight and the reply I got was ‘oh, I’m just plodding along.’ They hadn’t really needed to say much their body posture said it all (to me).
‘Just plodding along?’ I queried in a ‘pass the salt tone of voice’ with great respect, no shift in tonality.
‘Yes,’ they replied and shrugged. It was like what I would call an ‘Eyeore experience’ believing other forces in the world were in control of this person. What the LAB Profile® calls a Reactive pattern waiting for something to happen to make them move on. ‘Oh well, that’s the way it is, you have to go with the flow,’ shoulders down, air of resignation. The Eyeore character (Winnie the Pooh – A.A. Milne originally) does this, he reacts. That’s the way things are, things happen for a reason, what can you do?
I found the ‘just plodding along’ response a little disturbing, particularly because this was at a business networking event. This person owns a business, being in a ‘reactive’ mode can mean that people believe in chance and luck, and that the current state of affairs is caused by outside forces, greater than the person is. When having or being stuck in this pattern people may spend a great deal of time in apparent inertia. At times they don’t seem to ‘get started’. They can operate with extra caution and study situations endlessly before they do anything. There are of course situations where this extra caution and studying is useful, i.e. if we need someone to analyse something but the worst case scenario is that nothing happens.
As the LAB Profile® patterns rarely appear in isolation when this Reactive pattern is coupled with Away From, recognising what should be avoided and got rid of, what they don’t want, then people will only respond to negative situations. Goal focus can become a problem they will see things getting worse, when in fact a little work and perhaps research and another option or way of doing things might be available. Add to this inertia, focus on what is wrong the pattern of consistently being convinced, that is the need to re-evaluate every day makes the person sound or become sceptical. Along with at times the habit of being lost in the detail nothing happens, shoulders slump and the ‘just plodding along becomes not just a phrase but a habit.
Do you want that habit or something different? Contact me for help, tips, suggestions, coaching 01309 676004 or 01224 900748.
We all network, in some way, whether it’s a chat down the supermarket or at the football match, at the hairdressers, having a coffee etc. And we network for different reasons. 10 tips or suggestions here.
1. Be passionate – about yourself, your work and the company you represent
2. Set a goal – i.e. plan and prepare before attending events. Ask yourself what do you want to achieve from this event?
3. Don’t butt in on other people’s conversations. If someone is deep in conversation hover respectfully then say ‘Hi, I am or I’d like to meet you.’
4. Don’t think ‘What’s in it for me’ but ‘what’s in it for the other person, who might you connect them with?’
5. Follow up to build trust, do what you say you’re going to do when you say you’ll do it
6. Don’t hear ‘no’ only ‘not yet’ – spot opportunities for the future. 7. Be patient – it takes time to build relationships and let people to do business with you.
8. Ask open questions – by doing this you get better answers and create more business opportunities. Listen actively – we learn nothing by talking, only by listening. Know when to talk, when to listen.
9. Don’t use 50 shades of ‘really’. Indicate sincere interest or make a plausible excuse to move on. Sadly some people are boring, only interested in themselves, or just rude and bear in mind some people are new to this networking and are nervous which makes them all of the aforementioned.
10. Enjoy yourself. If you don’t, think about what was going on. Take a fly on the wall position. Was it the venue? Was it the format? What was it? Next time, do something different or try out a different format. Or network online and then meet individuals in a safe and public place for one to one networking.
I was at an event not long ago, where a guy told me what he did and said ‘I don’t suppose you’d be interested in what I do.’ Aha I thought’ really? How do you know?’ I then asked him if he could recommend someone to me who would provide a certain service based on what he had said, he replied ‘oh all the guys I know would be too busy, look in yellow pages’. There ended the conversation.
I would also like to add something one of my associates said too me once ‘if you network and hand your card to people, then expect them to contact you and when they do be respectful, throwing your toys out the pram because you’re on someone’s mailing list could potentially lose you a referral or future business’. Otherwise in the words of Daniel Priestley all you have done is collected a heap of business cards; you need to make networking work.
If you want help or ideas on language to get other people to understand you better or for you to understand them better, or help on confidence or presenting yourself to others – please contact us 01309 676004, 01224 900748, 07796 134081. http://www.developingworks.com
Knowing what you want – having outcomes
Noticing what you are getting – using your senses
Keeping changing what you are doing – being flexible
1. Have your outcomes set for each section of content. Check – are there outcomes for: you, your team, your department, the organisation, or anyone else involved? Ensure that the outcomes and evidence are sensory based – that means – what you will see, hear and feel when you have this outcome. It might seem tedious to check each of these senses out and with each person, but just because you see things one way, another person may have a gut feeling about the matter in hand and yet another will want to check you are singing from the same hymn sheet. A little time spent on this at this point will save nasty surprises later. For a team meeting write the outcomes down and keep them highly visible (e.g. on a flipchart), so that amendments or additions can be made on the chart – post-notes and different coloured pens really useful here.
2. Gather other people’s outcomes and assure that everyone is happy about which outcomes are the priorities for this meeting. Check this out by looking at each person in turn and if their eyes move away from you or they appear to be making some kind of face, they are most probably thinking, so give them time before you move on. Only move on when you have a clear yes or no from each person. Again this saves time in the long run.
3. Set the time frames for the meeting. Ensure that each person involved gets a chance to say what they need to say in their allotted time, again give them time to do this, but see next sentence. Do not allow any one person to monopolise all of the time. If necessary, interrupt them politely and bring the meeting back on track.
4. Check at regular intervals what is happening for you, for other people, and for the meeting process. Check by looking, watching, and listening (your gut feeling may not be as reliable as you would like it to be).
5. Watch for red herrings (things that are irrelevant) and ask the following ‘relevancy challenge’ type of question, “Excuse me, I’m not clear how the issues you are raising are helping us to achieve our outcome?”
6. If any member of the team is repeatedly blocking the process of achieving the meeting’s outcomes by raising ‘cannots or buts’, an easy way to keep the responsibility with them is by asking questions like, “What would have to happen for us to be able to…?”. This keeps the responsibility for solving problems with the person who is raising them and enables the person you have questioned to perhaps “think out of the box.”
7. Summarise decisions and intended action plans for each stage of the meeting.
8. Have each person internally rehearse their next action steps by going through what they are going to do by acting ‘as if’ they are seeing it happening, talking themselves through the steps and actually putting the steps into action. If there are any concerns, go back and check that the outcome is stated in the positive, that it is specific, that the way it might affect other people, other areas of work has been checked, what evidence there will be that the outcome has been achieved and what each person has to do themselves.
9. Finally, summarise all the next action steps, with a completion date and person specified to be responsible for the action. Confirm the date for the next meeting