Recently I shared my thoughts about the power of thinking about which conversations to stop and start having so as to increase leadership and individual effectiveness. The notion is broader than it seems as first. Conversations we are having with ourselves, quietly and internally, regularly dictate how we impact others. Conversations within organisations massively impact how the employees go about delivering the work of that organisation. Disruptive innovations force organisations to have different conversations, such as moving from a conversation about “how good we are”, to one that starts with “our industry is changing rapidly and we need to change or go bust”.
Often leaders decide to change conversations for non-dramatic reasons.
Today I saw a leader of an organisation do something that I have never seen done before and it had an amazing impact on everybody in the room. The Managing Director of a global pharmaceutical who was running the Australian division gave feedback to each of her direct reports in a way that will have a lasting, uplifting impact on them I suspect for the rest of their lives. Here’s what she did.
She approached everybody that reports into the leadership team and asked them for feedback on their leader. Specifically she asked them to give her some words or phrases that would give her insight into (a) the greatest strengths each leader has and (b) what they like the most about working for that person.