The almond joy and mounds of communication.


flickr photo courtesy: swamibu

flickr photo courtesy: swamibu

Sometimes you feel like a nut, sometimes you don’t

Sometimes you need a drill sergeant to get you motivated.
Sometimes you need a hug.

Knowing which you need is important as you will have to tell your boss, coach, partner exactly what you need.

Communication is difficult even when we know what the other person needs. But it becomes even more difficult and often moves into conflict when we are under stress.

If you normally respond well to deadlines and challenges, but all of a sudden those usual motivational tools are not working, you may need alternative tools.

First you need to recognize where you are and what you need.

Then, let your accountability partner (be it boss, partner, friend, coach, whomever) know what you need. Let them know you are in a different place at the moment (and maybe even why) and that their usual motivational techniques, though productive under normal circumstances, are not working for you right now, and would they consider an alternative (then give them a suggestion).

This is really an advanced coaching skill that I’m sharing here.
I share it because I often have well meaning accountability partners that are not coaches and they try to mirror my techniques back on me. Or, they try to use the techniques that work on them on me.

You see, we are each unique. That makes it difficult already. But within our own uniqueness we have varying states. Sometimes we are perfectly balanced, sometimes we are stressed, sometimes distressed and so on.

So when you go to help your coworker or employee and you want to have a motivating conversation, first you must:

1. Know the individual
2. Know the state of the individual
3. Know what motivational techniques work
4. Keep the feedback loop going

How do you do this?

With an open conversation, of course.

That is why it is so important for a coach and client to build rapport before they begin the work.
The coach needs to understand the person, the individual first before she can determine the path to take in helping reach the goal.

This takes time. One conversation may work for some, but it is only the first step.
Throughout the coaching engagement, the coach and client will experience varied states of mind and it is the coach’s job to try and understand what state the client presents during each encounter.

However, no one is a mind reader. Even a master trained coach may not be able to identify what the client needs. But she will be willing to ask.

So even if you are in a non-coaching relationship, make sure you are aware of your own state of mind (and motivation) so that you can help others, help you.