Realizing communication is everything

Quote

The most important thing in communication is to hear what isn’t being said.

Peter F. Drucker.

If only I could explain why this is so important… and thus proving the quote is true. In working with leaders in real-time high-risk environments we’re always focused on sharpening their observation skills in order to see what they do not know they should be seeing.

In my mind that is a perfect match to Drucker’s view on communication.

Intervention as Leadership Requirement

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Had the honor to conduct two real-time appreciate feedback sessions at Systematic, Danish premier software partner for Healthcare, Public Sector and Defense. Using business actors, the participants were forced to engage and step in to their leadership responsibilities under sometimes extreme circumstances.

During a break, I was shown the video below from the Australian Army. I’m uncertain about the background albeit it appears to be serious and originating around June 2013. The video was shared as an example of clear leadership communication, organizational values and unequivocal behavioral requirements.

In my book, the essential words of Lieutenant General David Morrison says it all:

The standard you walk past is the standard you accept

The quote underlines the O in the leadership TAO, be Observant — and react to what you see. It is true in any leadership situation, be that in the office, in the army or offshore where the “See too it duty” is a legally binding law in the Norwegian sector.

Have a look, spend three minutes on the video and then a few more as you move beyond the military setting and relate the strong message to your organization and personal leadership responsibilities.

Or click here to watch on YouTube: Lieutenant General David Morrison, June 13th 2013

Talking about values and the need to step in or step out

Talking about values and the need to step in or step out

Appreciating the Rich Nourishment of Feedback

Quote

Feedback is the breakfast of champions.

 Kenneth Blanchard

Yes, the Kenn Blanchard, originator of Situational Leadership as it departed in to version 2. The quote matters; without feedback there will be no champions. Without someone — the old-fashioned sports coach or the modern leader — to provide honest comments and suggestions there will be no improvement. Feedback must be of the 3C kind — Concrete, Constructive and Caring. And it must be a fulfilling experience!

The Essence of Feedback

Quote

We don’t see things as they are, we see them as we are.

 Anaïs Nin.

It usually takes half a day of hard leadership exercises to get to the essence of the quote. Please read it again, nothing captures the risks and rewards of good feedback better.

Image abstractions and tough role plays may be needed for you to realize how much of your own understanding, attitude and behavior is part of the feedback you’re trying so hard to deliver on a perfectly objective and neutral level.

Only you don’t; everything is in the eye of the beholder, your’s and your feedback too. Knowing you’re part of the equations is part of the solution; any and all feedback starts with yourself and your realization of your role in the interaction, you wish to give feedback.