I’ve seen, too often, employees in group meetings speak up and lose their jobs, credibility and opportunities for pay increases. And, there are times I’ve heard people speak up and save the company money, time and top talent.
What gets in the way?
When we hear a perception that’s different from our own, our egos can get in the way of listening and conflicts can escalate. Communicating persuasively, listening and building solutions are thrown out the window when we feel attacked, ignored or overruled. When you don’t own your point of view while respecting others’, you will miss the opportunity to share and build win-win-win solutions.
Today’s bosses are encouraging employees to speak up. They are breaking through long-standing barriers and fears for both women and men. However, the challenge still remains: many of us encourage coworkers, bosses and leaders to speak up—until they challenge the status quo. Then, often, our fears kick in and we silence what is being said. We become resigned about making any changes. Yet, we applaud those that have the courage to speak up and wish we could be more like them.
How to Own Your Point of View
Owning your point of view makes it easier for others to listen and hear you! Otherwise, telling others that your point of view is “the truth” will shut down your contribution to the conversation, project and team—potentially sidelining your career success.
Take Responsibility. Never forget that the thoughts, opinions and feelings you are sharing are yours. When you are pointing out a violation of company policy, safety or ethics, take responsibility for sharing the policy, sticking to the facts about the violation, and talking directly with the people who can make the difference.
Expand Your Perspective. We are all limited by our perceptions and life experiences. Don’t become emotionally attached to them. Instead, be willing to expand your awareness by listening to and honoring differences. Participate in a training program, read social media stories about others’ challenges and successes, and hire a coach to help expand your thinking. For bosses, I have found that qualified assessments successfully expand points of view about how to hire, coach, manage and train their teams.
Be Kind. Life does not discriminate against anyone. However, our biases or “truths” often do, and we negatively judge and assess others. Instead, speak well of everyone. Share and build on ideas, and don’t engage in gossip.
Share Appropriately. Indiscriminately sharing your feelings about how awful your job, boss or company is will sabotage your career. Instead, speak up privately and directly to the person or people who can make a difference. Then, take focused action. For example, complaining about a system issue that has always been that way will not change anything. Instead, talk with your boss, propose solutions and offer to lead the project to make the changes. Then, do it. This will actually boost your career success.
Do Your Homework. Frequently, people take the tiniest fragments of information (often found on the Internet or as company gossip) and talk about it as if they know it’s the truth. Our conclusions are rarely true. It’s like reading the back cover of a book and falsely believing you understand the plots and twists in the story. Get the facts! Then, share them. Be open to learning from others’ experiences beyond what you read on the Internet or hear during coffee breaks.
Speak up! Learn how to own and share your point of view appropriately … it’s good for your career growth and success.
©Jeannette Seibly, 2018
Need a speaker or facilitator to successfully address company issues? What conflicts have you been ignoring that need to be resolved for a successful 2018? Contact Jeannette Seibly. She will provide confidential, laser-focused coaching that works!
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. Are you ready to challenge your status quo? Are you willing to make simple and effective changes? Check out her website , or contact Jeannette for a free confidential conversation.