Based on how I'm interpreting Jeff's words, I think an even more applicable title would be, "To Affect Change, Everyone Needs to Be Heard".
I'll give you a setting to work with for my example.
In my experience, every person has to adopt or reject the idea.
Some can do that in the meeting if they feel they have enough information to decide.
Others may need to have a conversation with someone else (their boss or team) and they may resist the change.
Still others may see the inherent value or think that the change will make them look good and are ready to jump on board.
If you're the one trying to convince other people why your idea has value to them, this part of the process can be excruciating. Trust me, I know it well. I've found myself thinking, "What?! It has to be their idea? You mean I have to wait? Oh geez. Don't they get it? I already explained it. I told them it's good. I ... blah blah blah."
Wah! Cry me a river.
Now get over yourself and start thinking about everyone else because it's no longer about you, or the fact that it's your idea. If you want people to adopt it that is. (yes, that is also directed at myself when I would act the victim) And I'm not saying that you should give away credit. That's a different topic all together. How important is it to you to have people adopt this change or idea?
try on the idea and then make it their idea.
If you're a fast thinker or in the "already convinced for or against" camps, then watching this process can be painful and feel like a huge waste of time. But, it's actually quite important if you want the change to take hold, root, and grow. As the presenter of the new idea or even one of the adoptees, you also have to be prepared that the idea may evolve and change to suit the people it affects.
- What is the tone of your voice?
- Have you really listened to them first rather than try to convince them of your idea?
I'd like to add a few more points to Jeff's suggestions. This next question I discovered by watching people adopt ideas in meetings.
How do they try on new ideas and adopt them?
- By talking them out?
- By writing them down?
- By getting approval?
- By having time to think them over?
Have you considered how busy they are or what stresses they are under? (Empathy)
What motivates the person? (This I learned through the Personal Mastery workshop I took last month.)
- Having all the data?
- Looking good?
- Being in Control?
- Being Appreciated?
Will they perceive this change as a waste of time? If so, how are you appealing to their goals and motivations? In essence, have you considered that maybe you are presenting all from the perspective of "What's in it for you, the presenter"? Instead, think about their needs and start your pitch out with What's in it for THEM. Also known as WIFM, (Wiff 'em) As Nancy McSharry-Jensen taught me.
But it wasn't until I took the Personal Mastery class from Klemmer and went through one of their exercises and had the same "they're not hearing me, but I know the answer". In that exercise, I realized how much I played the victim instead of getting out of my own way. In fact, my pitches did not fall on deaf ears. After many attempts to convince "The group" and feeling as though I failed, I gave up, walked away and let the group die it's natural death as I knew they would self implode. Die you selfish people! Rawr! I know the answer but you won't bother to get out of your own heads to listen to me. ME! I know! I'm RIGHT! (hello me as the victim)
Once I gave up (about half way through) and stopped trying to convince others, I had a few people come to me and offer suggestions or ask me questions about my ideas. But, by that point I had focused SO much upon the few hard and fast folks that said, "NO! It Won't Work." and dismissed me (wait, not me rather my idea) and I played victim to the way they treated me, that I totally missed out on the gift that the curious few offered me.
If I had chosen to be vulnerable and drop my defenses, the victim mindset and considered that I had just started a revolution, what more could I have done to help overturn the negative mindset to a positive one?
HOLY SHIT! Do you see the power in this discovery? The power to bring about
Or, what other solutions could I have come up with (in or out of the rules/processes) to help the rest of the group succeed inspite of themselves?
I won't ever know because I just got madder and madder, more convinced I was right and the rest of the group was wrong. Sad isn't it?
But! There's hope. Because this was a learning opportunity. I will know how to handle future situations. I may not always handle them perfectly, but I do know some of the clues that indicate a victim mindset. And, I do have many questions I can ask as I've offered to you above.
My dear readers, I'd love to know how this helped you. Or, to know your experiences using some of these questions and choosing to behave or "show-up" differently.
Last, but definitely not least, Jeff what are your thoughts on my reply?