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Influencing Powerful People - #9

by Rick Baker
On Mar 23, 2019

This week's Dirk Schlimm quote - 

“Remember that powerful people identify greatly with their work and their enterprise. They expect the same from you. Show them that you take your work seriously and that you are striving to make a contribution, rather than just do a job.”

As I re-read this quote, I think of heroes I admire and how I feel when I hear people bad-mouthing those heroes. I remember people obsessing about and picking away at heroes' faults. As examples, I think about:

  • people criticizing Bill Gates' autocratic style [while ignoring the fact this man is the force behind mega-$Billion charitable donations
  • people criticizing Winston Churchill's autocratic style [while ignoring the fact this man wrote and delivered some of the most-influential messages known to man
  • people criticizing their bosses [while ignoring the fact these bosses, certainly, must have at least one good quality which could be discussed from time to time]
About business leaders -

As we watch and listen to business leaders, we can keep Dirk's advice in mind. Business leaders and business bosses possess various levels of power in their workplaces. Every leader possesses, at least, some power. So, we have plenty of opportunities to make use of Dirk's advice. 

While many leaders are 'driven' and that can be troubling or off-putting to less-driven people, we can always find positive attributes in the people we work with.
 
For example -
 

 
 
 

 

Better to be skilled at puzzles than cross words.

by Rick Baker
On Mar 16, 2019

The Thinking Behind The Tweet

When you are skilled at puzzles you deliver value.

When you are skilled at cross words you remove value.

Constructive criticism is an oxymoron.

 

Speak of the devil's advocate...better still, bite your tongue.

by Rick Baker
On Mar 7, 2019

The Thinking Behind The Tweet

Constructive criticism is an oxymoron.

Devil's Advocates ... here's an excerpt from Wikipedia: "In common parlance, a devil's advocate is someone who, given a certain argument, takes a position he or she does not necessarily agree with, for the sake of argument."

Those words - "Devil's Advocate" have a nasty connotation....we should not use them or the practice they capture.

Instead, consider using a planned strategy for seeking different perspectives when large problems are to be solved and important decisions are to be made.

Try, for example, using Edward de Bono's Six Thinking Hats

Tags:

Criticism: Constructive Criticism is an Oxymoron | Hero Worship | Humour | Thought Tweets

Influencing Powerful People - #4

by Rick Baker
On Feb 17, 2019

Here's another quote from Dirk Schlimm:

“The genius, who sees opportunity with outside-the-box ideas, gets easily frustrated if he or she feels surrounded by others who only see obstacles. A powerful person with a big idea is likely to feel that he or she is right and will grow impatient with naysayers.”

This quote triggers some questions...

Do you know many people who think of themselves as innovative/creative thinkers? Do you know people who consider themselves out-of-the-box thinkers while you see them under dimmer lighting?

Do you know many people who get frustrated when other people inject obstacles? How do you feel when others naysay when you raise what you believe to be good ideas?

Spirited Leaders have a philosophy that can be summed up in 5 words: People Don't Like Receiving Criticism. We also say, "Constructive Criticism is an Oxymoron".

Now, we know some thick-skinned people can accept and respond well to criticism...for these rare few, constructive criticism is not an oxymoron. However, implicit in Dirk's quote, it is highly unlikely people who possess and exhibit a level of genius - powerful people - will respond well to naysaying. So, when you find yourself facing such a powerful person consider better strategies than voicing criticism that will likely be received poorly.

If you must voice criticism then plan its delivery carefully.

Dirk explains how this can be done in his book.


I used to give people pieces of my mind. Now, I know I cannot afford such giveaways.

by Rick Baker
On Feb 15, 2019

The Thinking Behind The Tweet

Even if I could afford to waste my brain, it's much more fulfilling to cut people up to size.

Tags:

Criticism: Constructive Criticism is an Oxymoron | Humour | Thought Tweets

Catcheth thou when thou doth protest too much.

by Rick Baker
On Feb 10, 2019

The Thinking Behind The Tweet

There's a good reason why Shakespeare put that "doth protest too much" line in Hamlet. Many people are unable to express an objection and leave it at that. Rather, many people express an objection and go on and on...providing either gory details or more examples, or both.

Now I must stop here before I too doth protest too much...

...it would, for example, be wrong to deliver a ripe example of this I witnessed as recently as...

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