“Thankfulness is the beginning of gratitude. Gratitude is the completion of thankfulness. Thankfulness may consist merely of words. Gratitude is shown in acts.” – Henri Frederic Amiel
The common misconception in leadership and our work together is that when we’re done executing a project that our coordination is complete. We can plan and prepare, make complete requests, and get promises that we can trust for the work that matters. We can even execute and manage our work together impeccably.
What doesn’t happen is often a huge contributor to the breakdowns that occur in organizations. The missing piece is to evaluate and declare completion.
“What happened to the report?” a leader might ask.
The team might reply, “We sent it to you last week.”
To this point, no one knew what the other did or did not know.
The other scenario is when we receive the report but don’t share anything with our team, leaving them uncertain if there is anything else needed.
What are the costs of this?
- Missed coordination for incomplete projects
- That lead to customer dissatisfaction.
- Moods of resignation or even resentment can show up creating more distance in teams.
- Assessments of the team or leadership that contribute to distrust, the minimum being delivered, and sometimes even as far as attrition.
After the execution stage which includes rhythms of coordination conversations, we move into an evaluation. For most, this is a missing yet often crucial stage.
We need to include the following in this stage:
- EMPLOYEE/TEAM – declare completion
- LEADER – Review the work against the conditions of our request, that will have us declare satisfaction
- Declare satisfaction if complete to the conditions, or dissatisfaction if not.
NOW, one last key we’ll touch on is when the work was delivered as requested, but as a leader, we find we’re not complete.
Declare satisfaction, and make a new request.
Being in these conversations with our team, and they with us is what is needed for our coordination and actions to produce results and value that matter.
To review, our 4 Stages for the Conversations for Action include:
Keep in mind that is but one of many conversational skills in leadership that will make you generative, successful and impactful. In fact, there is more to pay attention to even within the conversation for action, but this is a digestible start.
You CAN DO THIS. You can learn, even master these skills. It will require a shift in our relationship to learning and engage in the practice. Ever been operated on by a doctor who never practiced, but learned a cool tip online? Of course not. The same applies to leadership and coaching that meets a standard of excellence that our customers expect.