LEADERSHIP: What do you WANT?

​This is a transcript of REPSradio.com Episode 002.

To listen to this PODCAST, Click Here.

Welcome, welcome, welcome…to the second episode of REPSradio.com!

The hard-hitting show, where I give YOU insights, perspectives, and tools you can put to IMMEDIATE results-getting USE- in your organization…and in your life!

To have impact, I need to ask tough questions, questions designed to make you THINK. And today’s question, while it may seem simple, is profoundly powerful.

Here it is: WHAT do YOU WANT?

While it sounds like a simple question, I’ll bet there’s a decent chance you’ve NOT taken enough time to truly consider your answer- especially when it comes to the most captivating challenges or issues facing you RIGHT NOW.

Impact is the key.

If we don’t have impact, if we don’t achieve a positive difference-making outcome, you’re wasting your time and so am I.

And IMPACT is a two-way deal. I’m doing my part- now you must do yours: YOU must HONESTLY, from your heart, answer the question!

BUT- I’m not simply giving you a Nike toss by saying, “JUST DO IT!”

Like I did in Episode 1, where I provided you with a free download of the ADMIT IT self-assessment, a tool to help you see how much you might be acting like a victim, I’m giving you an easy-to-use tool with this Episode as well.

It’s called the “Transformation Conversation.” When used thoughtfully, this tool will allow you to tap the power of your personal DESIRE- for whatever compelling opportunity is currently staring you in the face.

Unfortunately, in our politically correct (PC) world, you’ve likely been conditioned in a couple of ways:

First, you’ve undoubtedly been told that focusing on what YOU want is selfish. It’s wrong. It’s hurtful to others. If you are a person of integrity, such sentiments are a total bunch of crap!

For people spewing forth such nonsense, I’m going to borrow a line from “A Christmas Carol” by Charles Dickens, “If I had my way, any fool who goes around telling people that focusing on what they want is wrong would be boiled in their own pudding and buried with a stake of holly through their heart!

Second, you’ve certainly heard that you simply…can’t have what you want.

<<<<Rolling Stones audio clip “You Can’t Always Get What You Want>>>

Sorry, Mick, but you got this totally wrong. And I can say so without reservation.

When I look back over my life, I have ALWAYS gotten whatever it is I truly wanted.

Now granted, I didn’t always want the right things…but that’s another story for another time.

This Rolling Stones song was released in 1969, which I know, for some of you, is the dark ages. In the early 70s, it became one of their all-time greatest hits. It’s a LONG song…7-1/2 minutes, during which they repeat “You can’t always get what you want” 18 times! 18 times!

Talk about negative conditioning!

So why is getting to DESIRE…YOUR honest DESIRE…so important?

This is where your JUICE comes from.

Whether you realize it or not, virtually all decisions and choices you and I make come from our emotions…NOT from logical cognitive thought.

So day-in / day-out, your behaviors (in other words HOW you do things), your actions (including your choices and decisions), and your interactions with others ALL result from your underlying WANTS.

To develop this a bit further, let’s talk about human motivation- currently a topic with TONS of misunderstanding.

I don’t know what your role or title is. I don’t know your most compelling current challenges or opportunities. I can imagine, however, that whatever your personal circumstances, for you to get from where you are (“Point A”) to where you want to be (your “Point B”), you will need to INFLUENCE another person (or persons) along the way. Agreed?

Okay.

One of the things that makes me cringe when I’m in the field is hearing anyone, especially an executive or senior leader, say something like, “We need to motivate our people!”

This is such a GROSS misunderstanding of human nature!

The truth is- YOU CANNOT MOTIVATE ANOTHER HUMAN BEING TO DO ANYTHING.

Now- certainly…you can INFLUENCE other people- that’s likely part of your job (and a necessity for success in life).

I’ll be diving deeply into HOW to INFLUENCE in future episodes. As a matter of fact, I’ll be walking you through a model, which when used properly and with right intention, gives you the power to influence another human being to do virtually ANYTHING you want them to do.

For now, however, we’re going to stick with a single critically important understanding… I REALLY want you to get this: ALL motivation is INTERNAL. And ultimately, this motivation, this internal moment-by-moment choice-making mechanism is ALL based upon the WANTS and DESIRES of the individual involved!

This includes YOU.

This is why it is so important, BEFORE you take action or make decisions on setting priorities, targets, or agendas. BEFORE you commit resources or delegate responsibilities…it is critical that you become crystal clear on WHAT you WANT and WHY you WANT it.

Are we clear?! (video clip from a "Few Good Men")

As we’ve worked with some of the largest organizations on the planet over the past 12 years, it has amazed me the number of times we’ve been asked to help ‘clean up’ following failed attempts to improve performance.

When I look under the covers of such previous efforts, one of the most common reasons for failure is that organization leadership made decisions and committed resources BEFORE they took the time to seriously consider what it was they truly WANTED (and WHY they wanted it).

It’s likely, right now, that I could look at some of the things going on in your organization, some of the things you are currently doing (and HOW you’re doing them) and be unable to resist borrowing a line from the old Ren & Stimpy cartoon, asking you, “What are you doing man?!

So- I told you I’d be giving you an easy-to-use tool that will help you crystalize, qualify, and quantify what you truly WANT for any aspect of your organization, or your personal or professional life.

It’s called the Transformation Conversation. I adapted it from materials created by Dan Sullivan, one of my mentors.

If you’re at your desk…you may want to download and print it out so you can follow along as I walk you through it. Otherwise, you can always listen now and re-listen to this part of the podcast later, when you have the tool in front of you.

The Transformation Conversation consists of two questions. The first question is this:

“If you and I were having a conversation one year from today, looking back over the past 12 months, what would have had to happen for you to FEEL HAPPY with your progress regarding [whatever it is]?

So, for the [whatever it is], this should be a compelling opportunity or challenge you are currently facing. For example, it might be “safety”, or “productivity”. It might be “retention”. It might be, “my relationship with my boss”. It can be virtually anything- but you want to be specific.

The second question, which consists of 3 parts, asks you to identify and consider Dangers or Challenges that must be eliminated, existing Opportunities that you want to capture, and currently available strengths that can be leveraged…RELATIVE to the WANT you identified in Question 1.

By answering these questions thoughtfully, you will have identified what you truly WANT, and will have set that WANT within the context of your current environment and circumstances. This gives you on-purpose awareness BEFORE you move any further down a path of choice or decision.

Once you’re ready to begin, print out the pdf and HAND WRITE your answers. Handwriting is the best way to fully engage your brain.

Here are a few points about WHY this tool works so well:

· It asks you to mentally place yourself into the future and look back over the past twelve months. This offers your mind a totally different perspective than that typically used for looking forward and “setting goals”. It captures the power of visualization and feeling memory.

· With your thoughts now a year down the road, it asks you to imagine a result or outcome necessary for you to FEEL HAPPY. Remember- feelings are where the juice comes from. PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE take the time to truly sense your feelings (not just numbers, KPIs, or a “check-the-box” conclusion)

· The 3 parts of Question 2 then allow you to put your identified WANT into the perspective and context of your current circumstances. This affords you the opportunity for crafting an initial framework for where or how you might want to proceed.

When our Directors begin working with Clients, this is the first exercise we ask them to complete. It sets the stage for an entirely different conversation BEFORE any further steps are taken on the journey toward performance improvement.

If you are currently considering an organizational decision of any magnitude, I have a starting point recipe for you:

1. Distribute the Transformation Conversation to all involved decision-makers, advocates, and champions.

2. Have each member answer the questions in isolation- each from their own personal perspective

3. Come together, and share answers. Schedule plenty of time- without interruption. It helps to have an experienced facilitator who will maintain proper conversation flow and capture the highlights of all answers to Question 1 on a board or flipchart so that all can see.

4. Once the answers to Question 1 are captured, move on to capture the answers to all 3 parts of Question 2.

5. Done properly, you will have some amazing insights staring you in the face.

***

Today’s episode has been brought to you by the Human Performance Association, publishers of the best-selling book, 6-Hour Safety Culture: How to Sustainably Reduce Human Error and Risk, and do What Training Alone Can’t Possibly Do.”

You can discover what this work has in store for you at 6-hoursafetyculture.com, that’s 6-hoursafetyculture.com

***

That’s it for this Episode.

Have you identified what you truly WANT?

I’ll tell you one thing I want…

I want to hear what insights you gained when doing your personal and organizational Transformation Conversations!

Remember- you can (and should) do this exercise for each opportunity, challenge, or issue you’re currently facing.

You’ll be amazed at how much more clear…and POWERFUL you will be!

In Episode 3, we’re going to get VERY REAL. This is because all progress begins by telling the truth.

Until next time, this is Tim Autrey…

Adios!

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