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Improve Any Conversation

Sep 29, 2021

Season 2, Episode 35


Day to day, people exchange information, share perspectives, attempt to persuade one another. What if I told you there was a genuine way you could structure your conversations that would strengthen relationships, improve agreeability, and yield better outcomes for both sides? Would you try it? I lay out four steps that will better prepare you for any conversation personally or professionally. Each step is easily doable, preparation can take as little as three minutes, and it’s proven to improve the quality of your discussions. So much of it is human nature yet most people fail to tap into it and then wonder why meetings end in frustration. Learn the four steps, begin applying them immediately, and notice the different responses you start receiving. 



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Workshop – 3 Roadblocks Keeping Your Team From Winning



Hello, I'm Michael Kithcart, creator of the Wynning Your Way framework and performance coach for sales leaders. Welcome to the Champions of RISK Podcast, where we examine the many aspects of risk. So we can all face uncertainty with more courage and confidence, and a little bit of humor together.

Okay, so when you have the big conversation, you know, the one where it's crucial, it's important, maybe makes you a little bit nervous, you probably prepare for it, right?

But what about all of the conversations that you have every single day?

How much preparation do you put into those conversations?

Chances are not nearly as much as you do for those Crucial Conversations.

But what if you put a little bit of prep in?

Could you imagine the types of outcomes you could get?

That's what we're going to talk about today.

Because I believe if you just take a few quick action steps, in preparation for conversations that you have, that you will find that you will get far greater outcomes.

And so today, I want to share with you the three A's and two key secrets about how to improve the outcomes of conversations.

Now, how many times do you actually think about what you want the outcome to be when you are having a family conversation, maybe a conversation with a peer a discussion with your boss?

You- if you are working with clients, and if you're listening to this podcast, chances are really high that you are, you probably do some type of preparation and anticipation of a presentation that you're giving.

But what about when you're just picking up the phone?

Or you're meeting that client for lunch? If you just think about for a moment? What is your intention of the conversation?

What do you hope the outcome could be and you walk into it, that alone will put you in a better framework for having a more productive discussion, where you will actually have the opportunity to learn something new about the person.

And chances are that the engagement and the experience that the other person has with you is going to go up exponentially.

Okay, outside of that, what is helpful? Assume positive intent.

If you went in to every situation, or just walked around throughout the day, and you assumed that whatever interaction you're having with people that they had a good intention, rather than a negative intention. What would that do to your overall outlook in life?

Yeah, think about that for a moment.

If you know, and I've shared this before, I'm sure I'll share it lots more times, too, that our brains are predisposed to think- have negative thoughts from a protective standpoint? How many times do you think, Oh, that person's- That person's just gonna say no, or they're not going to like what it is that I have to say?

Rather than think that, what if you came across and you said, I assume that this person is going to be willing to hear me out that they will take my suggestions into consideration. If you just did that, and you did it for others, I'm telling you, the world would just be a better place.

And so you can do your part on that you can start having making some impact by just assuming positive intent going into any conversation. And I'm not talking like the big deals, right? These can be casual conversations that you're having with friends, neighbors, peers, clients, family members, there's an opportunity to amplify that every day, multiple times a day.

Okay, so here are the three A's that I really want to share with you that if you just use this outline on a consistent basis, I assure you that you will have better outcomes to your discussions.

So the first one is acknowledge. And acknowledge is so important because it really helps us have a better connection with people acknowledge is really foundational.

And the big thing about this is is often missed, we often don't take the time to set up our conversation in a way that you're really acknowledging where the person is at currently, you're missing the opportunity to demonstrate to another human being that you see them. And who doesn't want to be seen and heard?

We all do.

Think about it, you do too. So if you provide that to somebody from the beginning, imagine how it makes a shift in them, and how it will redirect everything that's said, After that, so acknowledges about explicitly sharing your understanding of an appreciation for the other person's current realities, it could be that they've had a really hard time lately, I understand that business has been challenging for you over the last year and a half.

And it's ongoing, and there's not necessarily you know, a defined end in sight that must be really wearing you down, just try that, I bet, you will see people's shoulders drop, maybe a big heavy side comes out, you could acknowledge their, their struggles that they've had, like, you've been working so hard, maybe this is somebody on your team, right? I see you, I see working really, really hard.

And I really appreciate all the effort that you're you've been making, and you are making great progress.

And I also see that there's some overwhelm around you that all of this work and all the moving pieces can be a little overwhelming, or maybe you are going to acknowledge somebody's successes, I see that you have increasingly been making changes and having different outcomes, or you're exceeding your sales budgets, or you've been bringing on brand new clients that we've never ever had before.

How often are you truly acknowledging the effort that goes behind those successes?

So just take into consideration that before you make a request of someone, or you share maybe what's going to be hard information that you think about the situation that they are in and have been in, and ask yourself, you know, how do you want to actually start a dialogue with them? Doing two, three minutes of preparation around acknowledgement from the beginning will radically shift the type of exchange that you have with another person. Okay. Second A is ambition. This is really about appealing to another person's ambition for a better future.

Again, as humans, we do think, we have hope, we anticipate that things are going to get better from this current state that we are in, regardless of maybe things are great right now. Yeah. And we expect that they're going to continue to get better. When people are faced with really challenging hard times, there is an expectation that there is light at the end of the tunnel, and things will get better.

And we want to tap into that, so that we can improve the conversations that we have with people. So think about the next discussion that you are going to have, and what motivates that person, think about how you can bring them a reward around something that matters to them.

So maybe it's their intrinsic motivation, think about the person are this is this somebody that would like to, or is motivated to do something, or consider a different point of view, because they are passionate about it, you would be tapping into their values so that there's personal meaning around it, or it's something that could bring them more joy in their life, bringing that to the forefront and, and highlighting that can really make a difference.

On the other side of extrinsic motivation is around recognition and appreciation status in power. So this could be you know, bringing up points throughout, that taps into them getting to a next level of achievement, or personal growth, or that they are going to receive recognition from people that they respect either personally or professionally, that to brought into the conversation at the right time, can really make a big difference. And the third piece is how much Affect are you bringing into your conversations and affect by that I'm talking about emotion, what kind of stories are you sharing?

What kind of energy are you bringing to the conversation and tone that you're using in the dialogue and maybe you- You know, if it's in person, what kind of hand gestures are being made, you want to get people feeling something about the exchange that the two of you are having?

Or maybe it's multiple people.

But still, if that can be a great opportunity, like, how are you showing up in a way that is going to appeal positively to people's emotions? Those are the three A's. If you think about, how are you going to acknowledge people tap into what motivates them, and bring some emotion to the conversation that in itself can radically, radically shift what's going on.

And I really, I want to challenge you to try it.

And if you even if you just bring one of the A's in, try it, try it on for size, see how it goes, play with it.

And let me know what that changes for you like, what do you notice? How did the person start to respond to you differently?

Oh, that's a great indication that you have tapped into something powerful, and it can really make a positive impact on your relationships with people that in itself should be a great motivator.

So here's my challenge to you: think of an area in your life where you need to have a productive conversation in the next week or so.

And just map out the things that you would want to say to that person to acknowledge them? What would that be?

And what would you say to them to appeal to their ambition? And how would you bring the affect, the emotion to the conversation, in a positive way? There's your formula, the three A's plus assuming positive attempts.

And actually thinking about the desired outcome that you want to have from the conversation will help improve any dialogue personally or professionally. drop me a line, comment in the social section.

And let me know how these three A's actually changed the way that you engage with others. And I will catch you on the next Champions of Risk podcast. Let me break it to you. This may be a hard, hard headline to hear.

But goal setting is not the key to sales success. I know it's almost hard for me to say it myself having a long history in sales. But we know that you have to have goals, right? It's necessary, but I'm telling you, it is not the key. If it was every sales team on the planet with a goal would hit it.

And if you are like most sales professionals, let's get real. You've missed a budget or two in your career.

There are other factors that contribute to consistently getting your desired results. And I want to share them with you. Join me for a free workshop on October 7. The Three Roadblocks Keeping Sales Teams from Winning. I'm telling you, this is gold, because achievement isn't the problem. Working harder isn't the answer.

And overwhelm does not have to be a daily present feeling.

So learn how to break through the roadblocks and I'm going to give you The five C's to Winning.

That can make a huge difference. It's free. It's over your lunch hour if you're in the Midwest, and it's Thursday, October 7. A link is in the show notes and looking forward to seeing you there.


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