Wednesday, 4 April 2012

Getting What You Need.....Indirectly

As a leader, what strategies do you use when asking doesn't work?

Getting people to do what you want is difficult, especially if you lack sufficient authority......or the environment is very political.  When direct techniques like asking fail, try more subtle approaches:
  • Talk less, listen more. Colleagues are less likely to resist when you've taken the time to acknowledge their concerns. Listen to their worries and make sure your solutions recognize them.
  • Help them to like you. It's hard to say no to someone you like. We tend to like people who share our background and interests, or who show interest in us personally. Recognition of good work also works. If your colleague does a good job, tell him.
  • Do a favour. Doing something for someone gives you influence and helps colleagues see a different side of you. Everyone understands the need to repay what another person has given them.

Adapted from Guide to Managing Up and Across (HBR Press).

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