Here’s my best relationship problem advice: Stop giving advice! In this article find out why advice-giving can be detrimental.
You'll also review three action tools for better communication and a review of the mind set used by great leaders, salespeople and communicators to build great relationships.
Don't miss the rubber band action step at the end.
Let me start with a real life example of 'advice gone wrong': I was enjoying a business lunch meeting with a talented and interesting colleague.
Overall, it was a really good meeting. We were able to sit outside on a beautiful spring day and we covered everything on our agenda. Our meeting 'turned sour' for me when this colleague started offering advice around something I’d not asked about. He shared,
“You should try out this workout system. I’ve lost 10 pounds and
I’ve never felt better. Let me tell you all about it. They have this
workout technique... They’re located...
Here let me give you the web address, it’s...”
He talked on, and on, and on, and on for more than fifteen minutes! All the while trying to convince me to try this new fitness system that he loved.
His advice was slightly annoying to me. What he was sharing did not interest me.
He didn't know this, but I've been active in fitness since my 20's. I have a complete home gym with
commercial equipment that I use daily. I have a routine that I love. And I have access to all the resources that I want and need. I'm REALLY not interested in trying something else. I felt impatient with him, and like he was wasting my time.
I know his intentions were pure, and that he was just excited about what he'd discovered.
I also know that he sincerely likes to help people. His "I'm doing something you should do..." ramble was NOT a big deal at all in our relationship.
BUT, IF he has a HABIT of offering unasked-for-advice, eventually his work and personal relationships will suffer. (And if that happens, he'll be on Google searching for solid relationship problem advice and help, and he might even find this article!)
Why do so many of us feel so compelled to give advice? How many of us are unaware of this relationship problem advice and are sharing information with good intentions, but unknowingly turning people off and away from us? How do we know when to share what we know, and when to just shut up and listen?
Review the Mind Set, Beliefs and three relationship problem advice, shared next, for insight and answers to these questions.
MIND SET & BELIEFS: Think about the great Leaders, Sales Pro's and Communicators you see and observe. As you reflect upon your experience with these 'Greats' you'll see traits, behaviors, beliefs and mindsets, like:
Three Relationship Problem Advice Tools:
#1 Skill/Tool:Advice Requires Permission (ARP): Have you ever given the best advice to someone and they completely ignored it OR they got defensive and angry with you? I have. And I now know that when that happens, chances are good that I gave advice without permission.
#2 Skill/Tool: Lead By Inviting Input and Participation: This tool is powerful. This is the art of seeking to understand the other person's viewpoint, ideas, thoughts and insights before you give any advice.
#3 Skill/Tool: Listen Aggressively: This means to hear with determination and energetic pursuit, demonstrating a desire to understand.
What action can you take right now to remember to put to use this relationship problem advice? Here’s What I Recommend:
Let me know what you think – is this relationship problem advice something that you see gets in the way of your own or others success? Let me know if you try the rubber band and if you notice a positive difference in your relationships by holding back advice until asked.
Learn more about our Essential Leadership Performance Tools workshops, here.
Steve, "You weren't talking about me were you Suzie? I enjoy your newsletters and am currently working on my own listening and communication skills. So I appreciate this relationship problem advice article! I find quite often that selling skills are the polar opposite of training skills.....training skills are more about telling and putting on a live performance where were there to entertain and selling is more about asking the right questions and than listening aggressively as your newsletter suggests." My Reply To Steve, "Steve, thank you for your comments. For me this is a lifetime of learning... so glad to know I'm not the only one working on it!"
Kathy Regan, "Suzie, Thank you. I thought the McCloskey quote on speaking / listening was poignant" 'I know that you believe you understand what you think I said, but I'm not sure you realize that what you heard is not what I meant.' "I am guilty as charged!"
Mark, "Great 'advice!' I especially like the phrase Listen Aggressively."
Gordy, "Hope all is well! I enjoyed the article on Relationship Advice – another example of why God gave us two ears and one mouth!"
Lisa, "Suzie, Thanks for the article on giving advice. It was so timely for me because I caught myself doing this just this last week!" My Reply, "Thank you for tuning in, reading and sharing your thoughts. Get out the rubber band!"
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