Throughout our childhood, we are taught boundaries for what is acceptable and what is not. We learn to accept the rules set by others, but it is an unknown as to why we are afraid to speak up when our boundaries are over-stepped. The give and take of adhering to rules and procedures apply to every type of arrangement.
Speak up or give up ~ the choice is in your hands.
Preparation Helps the Strategic Plan
List priorities ahead of schedule and acknowledge where you will draw a line in the sand for declining an ‘opportunity.’
You may find it far easier to say ‘no’ to an offer at the start than after a project is already in process. Should the need arise, sales strategy and negotiation skills apply well to get your point across to determine if you may find a happy conclusion.
Sales and negotiation apply to personal, career, and client issues standing in the way. Anytime we express a desire, make a request, or wish to change something, there is a need for each of us to sell our ideas and negotiate the outcome.
The high points for this type of conversation include:
- Restatement of the original plan
- Your perspective of the outcome to date
- Inquiry of the other party’s perspective to date.
- Request of the current long-term vision in case it has changed.
- Listing of the disconnects and reasoning as you see it.
- Inquiry of the disconnects as the other party sees it.
- Request for the other party’s suggestions for improvement.
- Provide choices that speak to the other person’s interests.
- Confirmation of how to best move forward together or part ways.
Of course, all senses and sensibility will be on high alert after a serious discussion as outlined above. Initially, the other party may feel insulted. But with a calm voice, keen listening to ask insightful questions, and not laying any blame, you are far more likely to find an agreeable solution. Concerning projects going off track, it will be far easier to learn where you derailed to get back on to head in the preferred direction.
All sales and business development effort begin and end with a friendly give and take in conversation and exchange of ideas. Our job is to find where the better match resides to make certain our time is well-spent.
Most likely, you experienced situations when not everything was openly communicated as should have been. Only after time was devoted to a project, did the truth reveal itself. It’s possible the facts came to light after an initial misunderstanding. No matter the reason behind the disconnect, it is necessary to make a sudden stop to figure out exactly what is going on to correct it.
Give thought to past issues with people and their projects, collaborative efforts, and partnerships of all types. If any of the efforts ended poorly, think about how you may improve upon similar circumstances in the future.
Quick Guide for Problem Solving
Speaking up to present your side of the story is very difficult for most, yet there the need is evident, particularly when there is a desire to move forward.
Use this five-step model:
1. Here is what you said
2. Here is what I understood
3. These are the current results and issues we face
4. How do you see the solution?
5. Incorporate some of the ideas (if they meet your standards) with your suggestions for acceptance.
The conclusion of the intense conversation will either move you toward parting ways or continuing together on a more solid footing. In the process, you will develop an admired personal brand.
- Do not overlook perceived issues.
- Decide ahead of time what bothers you the most.
- Consider possible solutions for the issue as points to be discussed.
- Gain the perspective of others first and include perceived progress being made.
- Request ideas for improvement.
- State anything misinterpreted by yourself or the other party and ask to resolve.
- Offer your insights for moving forward.
- Come to a meeting of the minds for all to benefit.
- Decide whether the time is best spent parting on a friendly note or moving forward together.
- Celebrate Success!