Posted by Howe Q. Wallace on Wednesday, August 8th, 2012
Roger Wooten of Mocksville sent me a list of things that “wise farmers” say. Someday, you will see the entire list. But, I was reflecting upon one of the sayings:
“Most of the stuff you worry about doesn’t end up happening.”
Haven’t you found that to be true?
I especially think that is so with regards to “courageous communication.” I am a believer in courageous communication which is the process of initiating discussions about matters that we are concerned will be difficult to discuss. No one likes to bring “bad news.” No one likes to talk about “delicate” issues. No one likes to speak about “the elephant in the room.”
Therefore, sales folks don’t like to talk about price increases.
And, managers don’t like to talk about “poor performance.”
And, worse, subordinates don’t like to bring up “problems” or “issues”.
Most of us fear those things, because we “fear” the reaction. The customer will quit. The boss will get mad and my career path will be altered.
My experience is just the opposite. My experience is that you acknowledge the fear, but move ahead into the difficult area. You move carefully. You move thoughtfully. You move after you have rehearsed it. You suspend your fears. You move ahead.
Further, my experience is that my fears are greater than what happens. In fact, my overwhelming experience is that people respect an honest effort to address difficult situations for the purpose of making progress and improving matters.
I have grown to put down “the voices of fear” and to address matters as soon as I can.
Discussions about problems always advance the ball. You don’t become a “courageous” communicator until you practice it. Start practicing.