Executive Leaders, Why Are You Talking?https://c-suitenetwork.com/advisors/wp-content/themes/csadvisore/images/empty/thumbnail.jpg150150Jennifer LedetJennifer Ledethttps://secure.gravatar.com/avatar/517e62411acf7b10f35b4dc1d70142df?s=96&d=mm&r=g
For some leaders, bosses, and executives, talking less and listening more is no big deal. Some may need to even be more assertive and outspoken in certain business scenarios. For others, this seemingly simple approach requires great self-discipline. Notice I didn’t say it’s impossible, just that it requires self-discipline.
One powerful question leaders must ask themselves is, “W.A.I.T?” or “Why am I talking?” Of course, I didn’t come up with this acrostic, and I’d love to credit the person who did if I knew who it was, but I have been using it in my career, my relationships, and my personal and professional life.
Leaders should ask themselves the W.A.I.T.? question whenever:
You get that lurking feeling in the pit of your stomach that you’ve been talking about yourself too much, bragging, or just not practicing that all-important humility thing
Employees are sharing a problem or concern they have about their work, procedures, or policies
You have asked a team member an open-ended question and they are trying to respond
You want to get to know an employee better so that you can understand what his professional goals are or what her career plans are
There’s an opportunity to make a colleague the hero/star and/or to let someone else shine
You have the urge to chime in with “I did that first,” or “I’ve had it way worse,” “I invented that,” or “Me too”
You sense that a team member has something bothering them or giving them trouble and you want to help
You get the picture. Abraham Lincoln said, “Better to remain silent and be thought a fool than to speak out and remove all doubt.” Wise words. W.A.I.T.?
When are some times you need to take a step back and ask yourself the W.A.I.T. question?
Have you had any experiences – good, bad, or ugly – to share that might help the rest of us?
Comment here and share your thoughts, examples, and tips:
For more resources on leadership and employee engagement, be sure tosign up for our monthly Ezine and you will receive our report: “7 of Your Biggest People Problems…Solved.”
Jennifer Ledet, CSP, is a leadership consultant and professional speaker (with a hint of Cajun flavor) who equips leaders from the boardroom to the mailroom to improve employee engagement, teamwork, and communication. In her customized programs, leadership retreats, keynote presentations, and breakout sessions, she cuts through the BS and talks through the tough stuff to solve your people problems.