Monday, 13 June 2011

Crucial Conversations......and your thinking...

As a leader, how do you prepare your thinking for crucial conversations? 

Crucial Conversations.......starting points....

  • What do I want for myself?
  • What do I really want for others?
  • What do I really want for the relationship?

Once you've asked yourself what you want, add one more equally telling question:

  • How would I behave if I really wanted these results?

Find your bearings.  There are two good reasons for asking these questions.  First, the answer to what we really want helps us to locate our own North Star.  Despite the fact that we're being tempted to take the wrong path by (1) people who are trying to pick a fight, (2) thousands of years of genetic hardwiring that brings our emotions to a quick boil, and (3) our deeply ingrained habit of trying to win, our North Star returns us to our original purpose.

Take charge of your body.  The second reason for asking what we really want is no less important.  When we ask ourselves what we really want, we affect our entire physiology.  As we introduce complex and abstract questions to our mind, the problem-solving part of our brain recognizes that we are now dealing with intricate social issues and not physical threats.  When we present our brain with a demanding question, our body sends precious blood to the parts of our brain that help us think, and away from the parts of the body that help us take flight or begin a fight.

Asking questions about what we really want serves two important purposes.  First, it reminds us of our goal.  Second, it juices up our brain in a way that helps us keep focused.

From: Crucial Conversations by Kerry Patterson, Joseph Grenny, Ron McMillan, and Al Switzer
Published by: McGraw-Hill

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