I listen. I ask and observe what people are not saying and what words come out of their mouth.
That’s the core of my interview with Dr. Richard on The Daily Helping. From the very first question, I was sharing my knowledge … yet I had not realized the parallels between that information and the expertise that I bring in businesses.
Empowerment programs focus on the individual. That’s very important – and necessary as it increases self-awareness. What I do takes all that personal work and facilitates interactions in the workplace. Let’s face it, as much as we want to retreat and hide sometimes, we are never alone in a cave by ourselves. We are always influenced by those around us. When we’re present in the moment, the space between us becomes tangible and important.
Sharing stuff is easy for people to do with me. It’s typical to have strangers share with me what’s on their mind. From choosing a tahini brownie or dealing with the fact they just lost their job, to celebrating a promotion or the birth of a new family member, and even … small delights that brighten their day.
We tend to think problems are a weakness. When we take that into account and accept that other people influence us, we can then look at that space between and see if:
- We don’t say something we must say because it will cause a negative reaction.
- We are waiting and waiting for the perfect time to share big news.
- The depth of our relationships at work (and at home) are polite.
- We don’t know who to ask for help at work (or at home) when life happens.
- Our personal work is not able to be seen because we are not showing up.
These are symptoms of deeper problems that may be our issues; yet, more likely the causes are expectations, patterns or unwritten agreements that are in the way of our happiness, satisfaction, and usefulness.
Expectations, patterns, and unwritten agreements – what we do, not what we say – defines the culture in an organization.
Culture is the responsibility solely for founders and executive teams to cultivate.
What we accept, ignore, and allow becomes the standard. The norm.
My interest has always been those unwritten agreements from my earliest memories. To fit in, and to survive. Where there is something more … there is this part of me that realizes there is dissonance. Expectations, patterns, and unwritten and agreements at work. Their existence gets in the way of getting things done, and companies get mired down and go through the motions instead of growing and innovating.
A good start address existing problems is to go through the 4 Steps to Solve Problems:
- Recognize there’s a problem.
- Collect the data.
- Understand what the solutions are and evaluate them.
- Make a choice.
Also know that the first step is the most important. Spending more time on recognizing and defining the problem – past the symptoms to the root, the real problem – creates a good filter that will make the next three steps easier. (If it’s ever hard to do steps two, three, or four, go back and give number one some more thought.)
Take a listen to the conversation I had with Dr. Richard. I am glad to have made an appearance on his podcast:
Ep. 23: #ActToPLAN: You have the Power to Lead, Assess, & Navigate (a Profitable Business) | with Jessica Dewell