|| Print ||
|Tuesday, March 05, 2013|
Leaders shouldn’t be “thick skinned” — not if that means shrugging off negative feedback that might actually be correct.
Leaders need to be emotionally resilient, unattached to outcomes, and assume positive intent.
Our tool here is “The Ladder of Inference.” We all have one — using it well allows us to deliberately choose how we’ll react to the world.
We don’t react to stimuli. We react to what we think/believe/feel the stimuli mean.
There’s a gap between the input and the response, which is filled with STORIES and BELIEFS about what certain stimuli mean. (Without a story or a belief, stimuli would have no meaning.)
The process of “reframing” is the process of offering up a new story, so a person can experience (interpret) the exact same stimuli in a new way.
Having a “thick skin” can mean — CAN mean — that you interpret the stimulus as negative, but you shrug it off, muting your emotions. (This is dangerous, as Brene Brown tells us in her TED talk on vulnerability.) And it leaves you unable to learn from accurate feedback that happens to be negative.
Better (in my opinion) is being able to quickly come up with THREE STORIES that all explain the experience equally well — with one of the stories being super-positive, one neutral, and one negative.
Example: I’m stuck behind a super-slow driver I cannot pass.
Negative story: This guy is a jerk.
Neutral story: This guy is unable or unwilling to drive at a normal speed, for reasons I don’t know.
Positive story: This guy somehow knows I need to practice my patience, and has taken time from his busy life to get in front of me and drive slower than he wants to, just to give me this opportunity to practice. What a cool guy. I owe him one.
With all three stories available to me, I may still pick the first one, but I’m choosing WITH AWARENESS.
Another trick is to ask, “When did I ever do what he’s doing?”
Oh, yeah — once I had a casserole on the passenger seat, and no lid, so I drove like a total granny. Oh, and another time, my then-wife had a migraine. Oh, and the time I had the weird engine sound. Oh, and…
By this point you’re much more willing to give the other person some slack. No “thick skin” required.
Tom Cox is a Beaverton consultant, author and speaker. He coaches CEOs on how to boost performance by building workplace trust.
|Get on the bus!|
|Bike Chic: 7 stylish options for cyclists|
|Beam Me Up|
|Emperor of the Sea|
|Epitaph for a Boondoggle|
|Volvo plans $500M car factory in US|
|Oil crash starting to hurt in Texas|
|Swiss bankers guilty of tax fraud avoid jail|
|US grants Texan rhino hunter permit to bring back trophy|
|Norwegian Air tweaks cockpit rules after Germanwings crash|
|Federal Consumer Agency addresses payday loans|
|Slave-caught seafood sold in America|
A new report highlights how Oregon bankers are giving back to their communities.
Since 1932 Tidewater Transportation & Terminals (operating as Tidewater Barge Lines and Tidewater Terminal Company) has operated a multicommodity transportation and terminal company based in Vancouver, Washington. The friendly expression on the company’s shipping containers reflects the attitude of about 330 safety and community-conscious employees but belies how complicated the barge business really is.
The Port of The Dalles has run marine facilities since the 1930s, but they are part of a larger mission to strengthen the local economy. They focus on regional economic development with a strong bent toward adding good-paying jobs in high tech, manufacturing and other industries.
Like the advent of the locomotive, the cloud creates business opportunities that simply weren’t possible before now. Get up to speed fast in May at an exciting cloud-empowered Portland event.
Registration is now open for Portland Business Alliance’s Annual Meeting, one of the largest business gatherings in Portland each year.
The Commission helps to advance the professionalism, equality and efficiency of Oregon's judicial branch of government.