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Here's a few thoughts on third method. Generally speaking, humans learn in two ways: by acquiring intellectual understanding and through experience. In our schooling, former predominates, but it is latter which is most powerful in terms of inducing a deep sharing of emotions and ideas; for our experiences, which can be life's teachings, often lead us to profound awareness and purposeful action.
Look back at your schooling. Was it your book learning or your experiences, your interactions with teachers and students, that you remember most? In most cases, your experiences made most telling impressions upon you.
To transfer your motivation to others, use what I call my "defining moment" technique, which I describe fully in my book, DEFINING MOMENT: MOTIVATING PEOPLE TO TAKE ACTION.
In brief, technique is this: Put into sharp focus a particular experience of yours then communicate that focused experience to people by describing physical facts that gave you emotion.
Now, here's secret to defining moment. That experience of yours must provide a lesson and that lesson is a solution to needs of people. Otherwise, they'll think you're just talking about yourself.
For defining moment to work (i.e., for it to transfer your motivation to them), experience must be about them. The experience happened to you, of course. But that experience becomes their experience when lesson it communicates is a solution to their needs.
(3) CAN YOU HAVE THE AUDIENCE TAKE RIGHT ACTION? Results don't happen unless people take action. After all, it's not what you say that's important in your leadership communications, it's what people do after you have had your say.
Yet vast majority of leaders don't have a clue as to what action truly is.
They get people taking wrong action at wrong time in wrong way for wrong results.
A key reason for this failure is they don't know how to deliver all-important "leadership talk Call-to-action".
"Call" comes from an Old English word meaning "to shout." A Call-to-Action is a "shout for action." Implicit in concept is urgency and forcefulness. But most leaders don't deliver most effective Calls-to-action because they make three errors regarding it.
First, they err by mistaking Call-to-Action as an order. Within context of The Leadership Talk, a Call-to-action is not an order. Leave order for order leader.
Second, leaders err by mistaking Call as theirs to give. The best Call-to-action is not leader's to give. It's people's to give. It's people's to give to themselves. A true Call-to-action prompts people to motivate themselves to take action.
The most effective Call-to-action then is not from leader to people but from people to people themselves!
Third, they error by not priming their Call. There are two parts to Call-to-Action, primer and Call itself. Most leaders omit all-important primer.
The primer sets up Call, which is to prompt people to motivate themselves to take action. You yourself control primer. The people control Call.
The primer/Call is critical because every leadership communication situation is in essence a problem situation. There is problem leader has. And there is problem people have. In many cases, they are two different problems. But leaders get into trouble regarding Call-to-action when they think it's only one problem, mainly theirs.
For instance, a leader might be talking about organization needing to be more productive. So, leader talks PRODUCTIVITY.
On other hand, people, hearing PRODUCTIVITY, think, YOU'RE GOING TO GIVE ME MORE WORK!
If leader thinks that productivity is people's problem and ignores "more work" aspect, h/she's Call-to-action will probably be a bust, resulting in people avoiding committed action.
Let's apply primer/Call dynamic to productivity case. The leader talks PRODUCTIVITY: but this time uses a PRIMER. The primer's purpose is to establish a "critical confluence" – union of your problem with problem of people.
In this case, leader creates a critical confluence by couching productivity within framework of MORE MEANINGFUL WORK.
The primer may be: LET'S GET TOGETHER AND SEE IF YOU CAN COME UP WITH AN ACTION PLAN THAT WILL ENSURE THAT THE PRODUCTIVITY GAINS YOU IDENTIFY AND EXECUTE WILL ENABLE YOU TO WORK AT WHAT'S REALLY MEANINGFUL TO YOU.
Note what we've done: The primer is LET'S GET TOGETHER AND SEE IF YOU CAN COME UP WITH AN ACTION PLAN.
The actual Call is from people to themselves: LET'S INCREASE PRODUCTIVITY BY WORKING AT WHAT'S MEANINGFUL.
With that Call, leader moves from just getting average results (YOU MUST BE MORE PRODUCTIVE: i.e., you're going to solve MY problem) to getting great results (YOU COME UP WITH WAYS TO TIE PRODUCTIVITY INTO MEANINGFUL WORK: i.e., you're also going to solve your problem.) So, here's what leadership talk Call-to-action is truly about: It's not an order; it's best manifested when people give themselves Call; and it is always primed by your creating "critical confluence" -- they'll be solving their problem as well as yours.
The vast majority of leaders I've worked with are hampering their careers for one simple reason: They're giving presentations and speeches -- not leadership talks.
You have a great opportunity to turbo charge your career by recognizing power of leadership talks. Before you give a leadership talk, ask three basic questions. Do you know what people need? Can you bring deep belief to what you're saying? Can you have people take right take action?
If you say "no" to any one of those questions you cannot give a leadership talk. But questions aren't meant to be stumbling blocks to your leadership but stepping stones. If you answer "no", work on questions until you can say, "yes". In that way, you'll start getting right results in right way on a consistent basis.
2004 © The Filson Leadership Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
The author of 23 books, Brent Filson's recent books are, THE LEADERSHIP TALK: THE GREATEST LEADERSHIP TOOL and 101 WAYS TO GIVE GREAT LEADERSHIP TALKS. He has worked with thousands of leaders worldwide during the past 20 years helping them achieve sizable increases in hard, measured results. Sign up for his free leadership ezine and get a free guide, "49 Ways To Turn Action Into Results," at www.actionleadership.com