(Hands together, monotone voice) “Believe me, I’m so excited. This is the best thing that ever happened in the 500 year history of the company.” Do you believe me? I see people shaking their head – No.
So there’s one of two things going on.
1) Either you know me, and you know that I’m a good worker, and I have a great idea, and I just happen to get nervous when it’s my turn to give a presentation. And you’re going to cut me some slack because you know that I don’t have good presentation skills. But what that means is, in my leadership moment, when I am up here defining what my brand is, I’m making you do the work. That doesn’t help my brand out at all.
2) Now the other thing that might be going on is you don’t believe me! I’m saying I’m excited, you don’t see any excitement, and where your mind goes is “uh oh, there’s a hidden agenda, I wonder what else is going on?” Because if Carol’s on the stage and saying she’s excited, but she doesn’t look excited, six weeks from now there’s some back room deal that’s going to be happening.
I see a lot of women shaking their heads yes, making eye contact with each other as well.
My incongruence is sending you a message that’s not helping with the message I’m actually trying to talk to you about on the stage right now. What I’ve done is put doubt in our relationship.
Relationships are not static things. It’s not that just because we have a good relationship today that I can count on the fact that we’re going to have a good relationship tomorrow, and next week, and next year.
How do I know that? 50% of Americans get divorced. Yah, probably another 10 percent should be getting divorced as well.
But what that means is that the day when they look lovingly into each other’s eyes, and they say “I love you, I do, till death do us part…” and they meant that – and then the relationship got starved, one interaction at a time.
If I’m standing on the stage in front of 200 people, and I say something that maybe 150 of them are not believing there’s doubt not just in one relationship, there is doubt in 150 people’s relationship with me.
The next time I ask them to do something for me: “I’d like for you to be on my project, I’d love for you to move from your department to work on my team…” I’m going to have a harder road to hoe to get them to agree to want to do that with me because there is doubt in that relationship.
I’m not suggesting that you have to be expressive all the time. And that you need to show energy 100% of the time because we’re going to be downsizing and guess what – we’re going to eliminate your department!!!
Like that’s a little bit weird, that’s a little bit creepy.
What I’m saying is that you need to be congruent. If you have a message where you’re saying you’re excited, we want to see the excitement.
If you have a very serious message, that’s going to be impacting 50 people on your team, you need to show up, seriously.
On the other hand you might have 100 people running around like chickens with their heads cut off, all freaked out, and you know there’s nothing to be freaked out about, you need to reassure them. You need to calm them down. You need to let them know that you’ll stay there and answer all of their questions until everybody understands that we’ve got a road that we’re all going to follow clearly.
You need to be purposeful and strategic about what is the message that you need to be delivering at 9:00 am. In that meeting – do you need to welcome them? Do you need to challenge them?
And at your 10:00 am meeting you might need to be motivating them or encouraging them.
At your 11:00 am meeting, you might need to be inviting them to give you some thoughts and some ideas.
It’s the idea of congruence. That’s the first and very important thing.