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Professional Speaker Association of SA
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25 April 2018 4 Ways to get what you really want out of a business meeting. We have many reasons for attending meetings, not least of which is, “I was told to be here.” Some people see them as a rare opportunity to shine, others regard them as proof that hell is real. There’s usually a lot at stake, so it’s natural that we experience such face-to face interaction as deeply personal and stressful. Brainstorms, interviews, sales visits… they all seem to concentrate with laser-like accuracy on our point of maximum insecurity. Here are 4 simple and effective ways to manage your emotions and minimize tension. 1. Focus on the common goal. What is your group trying to achieve? That’s what you share. That’s what makes you a team. When you’re thinking about commonality and purpose, there’s less time to worry about yourself, so throw yourself into solving the problem or attaining the goal. If you look at photographs of athletes taken at the moment of maximum commitment, you see how their faces are often screwed into weird expressions, bodies contorted, clothes in disarray. They don’t care, because they’re focused on overcoming, not on how they’ll look in a picture. If they don’t score, nobody will ever care enough to even look at their picture. 2. You don’t have to like one another to be an effective team. And since we’re giving up obsessing about ourselves, we might as well quit the distraction of other people. It’s amazing how trivial the things are that we dislike about one another. (Ask anyone in a relationship who has just realised how loudly their partner chews.) The modern workplace is a minefield of political and personal issues that can derail work. It’s useful to remember that what a person is doing for your team is less important than who or what that person is. Listen, really listen, to their contribution. Active listening is all consuming. When you’re doing it right, you don’t have time to sit in judgement. 3. Stop trying to be the smartest person in the room. That’s a lot of pressure for one person to absorb. And it’s eating up your valuable brain bandwidth. It also blinds you to valuable input from rivals or even friends. The trick is to leverage the collective “smarts” of everyone in the meeting. So stay curious and listen actively. That’s what gives you the mental agility to see the connections between various inputs. Some days you’ll have an abundance of new ideas, but on other occasions, all you have to do to be the hero of the day is to connect the dots between ideas tabled by other participants. 4. Forget about what you can get. Concentrate on what you can give. Instead of every individual sucking energy out of the meeting to feed their personal agenda, put energy in and insist that all participants to the same. A good rule of thumb is that nobody may criticise until they contribute and idea of their own. This is where the “Yes! And…” philosophy of Constructive Conversations pays off. (For more information on “Yes! And… see previous blog posts “Why should I say “Yes” to someone if I don’t agree with them”? and “Use this one technqiue to master difficult conversations”) As the saying goes, “Keep your eyes on the prize.” Al
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ENQUIRIES / BOOKINGS:  0114629322 / 0745806040 / info@alprodgers.co.za
ENQUIRIES / BOOKINGS:  0114629322 / 0745806040 / info@alprodgers.co.za
CONTACT ENQUIRIES / BOOKINGS: e: info@alprodgers.co.za t: +27114629322 /
FOLLOW US Visit our social profiles for regular tweets and posts
Professional Speaker Association of SA
Professional Member of
25 April 2018 4 Ways to get what you really want out of a business meeting. We have many reasons for attending meetings, not least of which is, “I was told to be here.” Some people see them as a rare opportunity to shine, others regard them as proof that hell is real. There’s usually a lot at stake, so it’s natural that we experience such face-to face interaction as deeply personal and stressful. Brainstorms, interviews, sales visits… they all seem to concentrate with laser-like accuracy on our point of maximum insecurity. Here are 4 simple and effective ways to manage your emotions and minimize tension. 1. Focus on the common goal. What is your group trying to achieve? That’s what you share. That’s what makes you a team. When you’re thinking about commonality and purpose, there’s less time to worry about yourself, so throw yourself into solving the problem or attaining the goal. If you look at photographs of athletes taken at the moment of maximum commitment, you see how their faces are often screwed into weird expressions, bodies contorted, clothes in disarray. They don’t care, because they’re focused on overcoming, not on how they’ll look in a picture. If they don’t score, nobody will ever care enough to even look at their picture. 2. You don’t have to like one another to be an effective team. And since we’re giving up obsessing about ourselves, we might as well quit the distraction of other people. It’s amazing how trivial the things are that we dislike about one another. (Ask anyone in a relationship who has just realised how loudly their partner chews.) The modern workplace is a minefield of political and personal issues that can derail work. It’s useful to remember that what a person is doing for your team is less important than who or what that person is. Listen, really listen, to their contribution. Active listening is all consuming. When you’re doing it right, you don’t have time to sit in judgement. 3. Stop trying to be the smartest person in the room. That’s a lot of pressure for one person to absorb. And it’s eating up your valuable brain bandwidth. It also blinds you to valuable input from rivals or even friends. The trick is to leverage the collective “smarts” of everyone in the meeting. So stay curious and listen actively. That’s what gives you the mental agility to see the connections between various inputs. Some days you’ll have an abundance of new ideas, but on other occasions, all you have to do to be the hero of the day is to connect the dots between ideas tabled by other participants. 4. Forget about what you can get. Concentrate on what you can give. Instead of every individual sucking energy out of the meeting to feed their personal agenda, put energy in and insist that all participants to the same. A good rule of thumb is that nobody may criticise until they contribute and idea of their own. This is where the “Yes! And…” philosophy of Constructive Conversations pays off. (For more information on “Yes! And… see previous blog posts “Why should I say “Yes” to someone if I don’t agree with them”? and “Use this one technqiue to master difficult conversations”) As the saying goes, “Keep your eyes on the prize.” Al
FOLLOW US

Free Access to Al's

Communication Tools to have

"Constructive Conversations":

A bi-weekly emailer with practical tips & techniques to Build Better Business!
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