Making a commitment to speak up can rock the boat in any company. It requires an ability to take a risk to handle any consequences. The challenges are, not everyone will agree with you; and, not everyone will support you, even if you are correct. It all depend on your ability to have the conversations required to produce better results.
It begs the question, “Why bother?”
If you’re not willing to rock the boat, who will? Many people behave like ostriches with their heads in the sand. Some excuses are, “I need to keep my job.” “It’s time for my performance appraisal.” And, “It doesn’t bother me, so it shouldn’t bother you.”
The problem is, most ostriches eventually get bit … hard … in the proverbial butt … when the company is heavily fined for violations, a product is prematurely launched, an employee is hired without conducting proper due diligence or someone fails to speak up about health, safety or quality concerns.
It Takes Courage
It’s not a matter of IF, it’s a matter of WHEN the issue or problem can no longer be ignored. Many companies are so busy with the 30,000-foot-high-view they often overlook the legal, financial, or moral implications of their decisions. Or, business owners, boards, executives, and employees may make decisions based on their own financial, personal and professional interests, which may be detrimental to the company.
Rock the Boat the Right Way
It’s important to note, when you choose to rock the boat, be aware that company policies or legal requirements may need to be addressed first.
- Voice your concerns in a positive tone. Remember, some of the team members will be unwilling to change after a decision has been made or direction established. If you are offering a conflicting opinion, you may be viewed as negative. Be prepared to review the facts and address any less-factual concerns.
- Brainstorm Solutions. Instead of believing it must done your way, brainstorm to create a win-win outcome for everyone. Be careful not to select the first idea or an idea that resonates with the team. Instead, take the time to ask the right questions. Use persuasive listening techniques to build a win-win agreement.
- Implementation. Even when an idea, plan or program is approved, the person responsible may not have the ability or the interest to execute it. Set up a meeting to talk with them: What has been done? What do they view as the next step? What, if anything, has stopped them from taking that action? If agreeable, offer positive solutions that the person to succeed.
©Jeannette Seibly, 2017-2018
Jeannette Seibly has been called a catalyst. She is celebrating 25 years as a business coach, advisor and consultant who guides her clients to achieve unprecedented results. Remember, stress can be reduced when it’s managed effectively. Are you ready to de-stress for success? Step up now! Check out her website, or contact Jeannette for a preliminary confidential conversation.