One of my clients – a senior executive – was having an issue working with the CEO. The CEO didn’t seem to listen and worse didn’t seem to care about some of the issues my client was wrestling with.
We discussed the pressures the CEO might be under, how his personality was different from my client’s, and what might be going on in the difficult conversation.
My recommendation was to have a different kind of conversation with him – one which was honest and authentic – and which was not colored by previous encounters which had been tough. I was not sure if my client was going to take this on. Being open, as we all know, can sometimes be risky!
I was very excited to get this response from my client.
“I had a very courageous and transparent conversation with X today – about my feelings and about his behavior. It was very eye opening and very different from any other conversation I have had with him over the last 3 years. I’ll fill you in at our next meeting. Thank you for your advice!”
Kudos to the client for taking a risk and going out there. Being open and coming from a place of strength helped the client really tackle the relationship with the boss. It takes courage but the payoff is great.
Let me know what “courageous conversation” you have been putting off and why!