The Challenges of Choosing an 'Expert'
So I think one of the key elements to mastering behavioural change is WHO is helping you to do it?
Do your people respect THEM? Do they trust them to be giving the right advice? What are their motives? How will it make them look if they accept the advice? Let’s face it, most business owners have got where they are today through hard work, determination, a good idea and being right about a lot of things. (They probably keep to themselves the things that did not go quite so right!). It is an approach that the team they have recruited may have adopted by default.
When you start or run a company, you HAVE to have self belief in your ideas and vision. You need to be self determining. Because there seems to be, and always was, many people out there who regard plans for ‘self fulfillment’ as a direct challenge to themselves on a personal level. Your success makes their inner voice scream ‘what about me, I could do that, in fact I KNOW more than him about this, why aren’t I doing it?’ and the answers whispers back ‘because you are scared’.
So people tell you that you are ‘Brave’, (braver than them) say that you are ‘lucky’ (which is particularly annoying isn’t it?), no you are not lucky, you have created this window of opportunity in your life where you can invest some money you’ve saved/inherited/been given as redundancy and risk it setting up a business you’ve always wanted to run. Or perhaps as a teenager you always sensed you would be self employed. It doesn’t seem to matter at what point in life people break free of the traditional employment model, there’s always someone around who will put you down. On the face of it they might be supportive (if you are lucky) but you know you have only got yourself to rely on here. So back to the belief in self. It’s you, it’s your business, you hire the staff when you expand and it’s got your name on the website. BUT there might come a time when you need to delegate some functions in order to continue your billing, otherwise you might end up costing your company dear.
There are a lot of experts out there. You have a lot of choice. And many different methods for the delivery of the messages you want to reinforce. And ultimately, the method you choose will depend on who clicks with you and seems to have a grasp of your business, someone who has similar personal values to yourself perhaps? but perhaps you've never met that person? Open courses are notoriously anonymous and generic. Elements which also have appeal for some.
And this is how it goes with recruiting people for your company. You HAVE to use gut instinct as well as some ‘external’ evidence. Because in the end, it is the attitude and approach of the people you work with that is key, they are either open to learn and flexible or they are so defensive that every suggestion from you is regarded as a personal failure, they could be the most perfect candidate on paper, but there’s something not quite right with their attitude (this latter situation is sometimes experienced when you 'inherit' people in your team or business).
So perhaps you have people on board with their hearts and minds in the right place but their skills could do with some additional support? perhaps you always planned to do some training for them but never quite got round to it? maybe the almost unlimited options and public courses seemed vast and none of the courses QUITE covered what you needed. So here is your chance to create a hybrid course, pick and mix if you will!
This is something which I first became aware of watching Sir John Harvey Jones’ Trouble Shooter TV programme. The companies he was going into were household names or national organisations, usually with a long history behind them and an entrenched workforce. So it is not surprising that they were using inefficient methods and a ‘dead mans shoes’ method of promotion, with everyone becoming very protective about their role, title and the associated respect.
Respect that they were always right I imagine. Cue some ‘big shot’ from industry coming in, with a remit to make good television and you’ve got a hard nut to crack here. I know from personal experience that Sir John is delightfully direct, a candid no nonsense kind of person. But he was also kind with it and once the companies realised this, they were able to adopt, in most cases, at least some of his suggestions.