Creating the Right Conversations as a Leader

When people reach out to me for coaching, I spend the time to know who they are and understand what they are struggling with in that moment. We talk about what they want to accomplish so we both know the outcome that they want. This is a journey that they are about to go on as a leader and we are creating a partnership together.

As a part of the coaching programs that I attended, I was taught to meet people where they are. That didn’t mean in the physical sense, but where they are at in their lives and in their thinking at that moment. What I think about their situation doesn’t matter. It is important to listen to them and pay attention to what would make the most difference for them in the time that we work together.

My thought is always, what can I do to help them wherever they are right now?

Leaders can think about the conversations that they have with their team members in the same way. Not every team member is at the same place in their career. They come in with different beliefs, experiences, ideas, and assumptions.

Spend the time to understand what those are if they are willing to share with you. There may be valid reasons that they aren’t engaged or motivated. They may be dealing with past experiences that have caused them to shy away from visibility or leading a team of their own. What can you do to help them through those challenges? How can you help them build confidence and be more engaged?

There is a job to be done, but showing someone that you care about them as a person is what makes a difference.

That is what creates a stronger relationship with your team members and helps them grow. Not all leaders will do this, but if you want to create a stronger team, have compassion for the people on your team as a human being. The team members will remember how you treated them and what you did for them forever. You are the example that they can follow for their own teams in the future.

Look for Opportunities to Support Your Team in Your Next Conversation

Visibility isn’t top of mind for many leaders.

They perceive it to be extra work and hard to do. I assure you that it does not need to be hard to do or extra work. I want you to consider that you probably have multiple conversations with different people each day. Let me share a secret with you…Every conversation that you have is an opportunity for you to create visibility.

Look for opportunities to share information about what you did or your team did during the conversation. There is no need to overthink this, just make it conversational. For example, if you are talking to your boss, “When we have the upcoming leadership meeting, I plan to share that Mary on my team landed a new account last week. I think it will be great for them to see how great she is doing after being here for such a short time!”

Think of it as simply information sharing about you or a team member.

Opportunities are brought up every day, but people assume someone else will do it. What if you are that someone? Take on some of the things that are broken and get some credit for fixing them! Find a way to show what you have done through a status report or talk about it at a meeting so people see that you (or your team) did something that helped the organization.

Changing the Conversation Around Meetings

Meetings seem to be a way of life that is accepted for us and our teams.

Although, many of my clients suffer from the same issues that I once did around meetings when I worked in corporate. They aren’t focused on what they should be doing, but on attending the next meeting instead. No one questions that there are so many meetings and it is the approach that has become the norm to make decisions and inform others. It seems like the right thing to do.

No leader wants to have multiple conversations so a group meeting is the logical option. What is the issue with this approach? It causes leaders to never have time to get any work done other than at night so they never get away from work. Does this sound like you?

What if there was another option?

One of my clients shared a great 10-minute podcast with me called The Founders Journal by Alex Lieberman, co-founder of the Morning Brew Newsletter on his top 6 steps to reduce meetings. It is thought-provoking and may not work for every company, but imagine if you could reduce even 25% of the meetings that you have in your own group. It could give you a chance to evaluate the meetings that you normally attend and see if they could benefit from these suggestions.

Meeting Revolution Time!

What if you could apply just one of these suggestions and improve your workday and your life?

Leaders need to find ways to innovate to improve things and this is a visible way to do it. Imagine having time back for you to be able to think and be strategic for a change! I bet there are many other team members who would appreciate it too!

Do you struggle with creating the right conversations with and for your team? If you want my help, here is the link to set up a time with me: 30-minute conversation.

Susan M Barber, President of Susan M Barber Coaching & Consulting, LLC, works with individuals, teams, and organizations to build skills that leaders need to attain breakthrough results. Her passion for coaching and leadership development is driven by seeing the transformation of leaders as they reach far beyond their own ideas of success. She continues to drive custom programs for groups that want to make changes in their careers to become more powerful leaders.



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Susan M. Barber

Susan M. Barber

Coaching leaders on authentic ways to show their value & create visibility for their personal brand | Leadership Coach & Consultant|