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Thursday, March 31, 2011

How you word things can make all the difference...

It occurs to me that when times get lean and we are forced to make tough decisions, both personally and professionally, we revert to old cliches, such as "we simply have to do more with less." I have to tell you, that is not very encouraging for any of us. Most people would respond that we've been doing more with less! As a leader I don't believe using that phrase inspires those we lead to step up and do more. I know my initial response is to ask what others are doing?

As a leader we really need to be more cognizant of how we phrase things. I need to use language that relays to others that I am more interested in doing the right things with what we've got. Rather than tell your co-workers (or family for that matter in tough times) that we have to do more with less doesn't it make more sense to relay the message of doing the right things? If as a communicators it's all in the delivery, how about we rephrase this as "we need to start prioritizing what we're doing with the resources we have." You might say that I just said the same thing. Did I? Doing more with less conveys the message that we'll continue to do what we've been doing and add to that list without any additional support. Prioritizing what we're doing with reference to what we've got conveys that we may stop doing some things that are unproductive and focus on only doing those things that are producing the results we want and that are inline with our mission.

Communication is one of a leaders greatest assets or weakest links. Don't convey the message of business as usual, only more of it due to tightened budgets. Convey a proactive message of prioritizing what your doing, keeping your activities inline with your mission, so that you can accomplish great things even in times of reduced funding opportunities.

It really is all in the message! Just something to think about today. Next time you start to revert to an old cliche, stop and ask yourself how you can reword the message and inspires others.

Lead Strong...

Shawn

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