Before the pandemic, did you make decisions differently when they were your decisions about your life than you did when the decisions concerned your clients and their lives or businesses? What has changed now?
Or has the pandemic kept you from much contact with clients and prospects, so you feel out of practice?
What do you want to improve about your decision making now and post covid?
Your normal approach before the pandemic…What did you say to clients and how did you compensate clients when you overlooked key selection factors or, in hindsight, didn’t choose the best approach to problem solving for them? Or did you stay silent and hope clients didn’t notice?
Your approach in the future…how do you intend to react to the issues in the previous question post pandemic?
The following excerpt from “What’s Your Point?” (to be published in 2021) Chapter 6 “What is Communication?” is an opportunity to take a close look at your decision making process.
Exercise:Action NOW Me — Anticipate Decision Barriers
Answer the following questions quickly and in writing (to engage your brain full on) for the most useful results.
Am I so focused on helping others make decisions that I forget to question how well I make decisions which affect my income and reputation?
What was behind my hesitation in the last tough decision I made?
Are the hesitation triggers involved in my other past difficult choices listed below?
Don’t be surprised if you can check off more than one barrier to that decision making. Simple decisions aren’t simple, after all.
Hesitation Triggers & Barriers
Lack of commitment to possible outcomes
Ignoring steps in the creative process
Undue pressure and arbitrary deadlines
Out-dated thinking, ingrained habits, and biases
Fear, conscious and unconscious
_____________ (What has experience revealed to me?)
If I improve my decision making approach, can I think of three ways that will enable me to help clients with theirs?
List three improvements to my support of client decision-making concerns which will be reflected in my bottom line.
Identify three ways increased decisiveness will help me engage with prospects and clients more effectively.
Select five ideas for marketing, business development, product design, or service delivery that are inspired by Hesitation Triggers & Barriers.
Do you understand that the more conscious you are of your decision-making habits, the easier it is to anticipate barriers and to achieve success for all concerned?
Re-visit this exercise in the future when faced with significant decisions to make. Compare what you did previously or “normally” with how you now anticipate decision barriers.
Additional resource: Here’s an example of how to help clients by showing them how to deal with hesitancy and negative aspects of decisiveness in the context of your work together. This article is written to help real estate buyers and the real estate professionals who serve them address this topic —”Buyers: Hesitant or Decisive?“
PJ “To facilitate decision making, concentrate on shifting or transforming uninformed thinking into a constructive mindset. With the assistance of your professional expertise, guide prospects and clients so they pivot to an informed point of view.”
To be excellent at what professional communicators—from advisors, architects, and digital developers to lawyers, brokers, and physicians—do best, we must never stop learning.
We not only strive to continuously learn about changes in our profession and related technology, but also about relevant changes in the lives, work, and businesses of our prospects, clients, and target markets.
That’s a lot of effort and investment to expend while also, each work day, engaging prospects, serving clients, running a practice or business, and having a life:
When opportunities arrive to improve communication prowess, raise professional standards, and allow professionals to learn from and with their peers and potentially within a target niche, that’s amazing.
When that opportunity is live and online—with interaction possible and no travel or inconvenience—that’s perfect.
For professional coaches around the world, the Annual World Business & Executive Coach Summit or WBECS (“webecs” as it fondly referred to) is both amazing and perfect.
WBECS organizers hope many of the 23,000 attending the complimentary WBECS Pre-Summit go on to participate in the Full Summit which reportedly provides weekly learning opportunities in flexible, interactive formats over the coming year.
Over 3 weeks, the Pre-Summit offers two or three 45-minute webinars a day, each designed to challenge, fascinate, and stimulate. I enjoy the range of professional speakers and the diversity of topics.
Unexpected “aha moments” pop up regularly as speakers reveal surprising aspects or dimensions of a seemingly-familiar topic or introduce new elements to the client-service dynamic.
As a professional communicator who lists coaches within my target niche, WBECS provides a high-standard insider look at coaches, coaching, and related challenges and opportunities. Bonus topics include business development and leadership.
Please let me share a few tidbits aimed at coaches, but valuable in many contexts. Each of these WBECS speakers made the highlighted comment within a high-content, thought-provoking webinar:
Opportunity Abounds: David Clutterbuck revealed the broad opportunity his latest research uncovered: Politicians may be the new big target. Politicians do not use coaches in spite of the fact that CEOs have come to reply on these professional sounding boards and productivity stimulators. Business opportunities are right in front of us. Don’t you mentally kick yourself when someone in your field steps forward with a brilliant idea that had been staring you in the face? [ https://www.davidclutterbuckpartnership.com/ ]
Intentional Learning: Michael Bungay Stanier, author of The Coaching Habit: Say Less, Ask More and Change the Way You Lead Forever, repeated the opening remarks he has become well-appreciated for: “How focused do you plan to be during this webinar?” Do you begin things you believe will be of value to you with this personal fresh-start? I’ve found declaring my intention to myself at the start of anything stimulates retention and assimilation. Thanks again, Michael. [ https://boxofcrayons.com/michael-bungay-stanier/ ]
Personal Branding: William Arruda explained his perspective on brand as consistent demonstration of your “unique promise of value.” Arruda reminded us that now the first meeting and first impression usually happen online, not face-to-face or voice-to-voice. As soon as your name is mentioned, you’re Googled. What is your answer to his compelling question: “What do you want to be known for?” [ https://williamarruda.com/ ]
Niche Development: Dorie Clark , who’s latest book is Entrepreneurial You, stressed that when you select a target niche suppress the tendency to attempt to envelope the entire community, profession, or sector you’ve identified. Instead, “go DEEP not wide.” [ https://dorieclark.com/ ]
Practice Expansion: Alisa Cohn emphasized the importance of a high closing rate (she’s surprised if she’s not 85% effective) to build your practice. An effective closing process, coupled with persistence and practice, which make delivery natural, ensures you attract the clients your practice is designed to serve. Cohn’s creatively-practical session sold the audience of coaches on the value of closing to clients and on the do-ability of this effective communication skill which is too often dodged by well-meaning professionals. [ https://www.alisacohn.com/ ]
Where do you get your inspiration and your insight into your prospects’ and clients’ needs?
The under-valued, but essential 21st-Century skill is recognizing good advice—relevant, forward-thinking, practical insight—and knowing what to do with it.
This crucial skill expands opportunity as it overcomes or counterbalances deficiencies, increases advantages, and diminishes problems.
The results include lowering stress, reducing anxiety, and enhancing outcomes.
Change and uncertainty are now standards.
The pervasive influence of both means that to successfully navigate the future, you can no longer rely entirely on your own experience and knowledge to forge ahead.
Achievement in this ever-changing world demands flexibility and resourcefulness based on confident decision making, clear strategic thinking, and an open receptive mind—none of which are commonplace skills.