Leaders and Rebels

Today we’re going to look at why we get so stuck when things keep repeating and repeating. It’s the old quote by Einstein, “if you always do what you’ve always done, you’ll always get what you’ve always got.” And that’s the truth. Ain’t it the truth?

So, we’re going to look at how in relationships we get stuck in patterns and today we’re going to talk about the rebel and the boss, and I got an email from the boss in a company where she said, “I’m going bunkers with Donna.” Donna is our best salesperson but she goes around and everything I say, she has to challenge everything. If I say “today’s Tuesday,” she’ll say, “well, it’s going to be Wednesday soon.” If I say, “it’s sunny outside,” she said, “well it’s going to rain. So, what are you talking about,” and she is driving me nuts. So, what happened was everybody said, “fire her, fire her, fire her,” and I thought there’s got to be a better way and I was reading ‘Don’t Bring It to Work,” and I thought, hmm, she sounds just like the proverbial rebel.

She has to challenge, then she gets all her friends and her colleagues on her side and sooner or later they’re going to swoop into HR with a complaint. So, I thought what can I do and how can I do it differently.

So, here’s an important tip for the day. What I listen to were some of the things that she said and it was always about me being loud. I can be at times, but not often… is what was said to me being being bossy.

Well, I am the boss. So, I have to tell people what to do, but I’m very inclusive and she she said, “you’re always telling me, I’m doing things wrong. Well, sometimes she does and sometimes she doesn’t and that’s part of being a leader.

Right, right, okay. So, I got some reading. The book “Don’t Bring It to Work,” and then I talked to some people and I thought okay, let me change me, “if you’ve always done what…” you go, “if you always do what you’ve always done, you’ll always get what you’ve always got.”

Forgotten, anyway I called her into the office and here’s the tip, I lowered my voice. Now, I’m not loud all the time but I lowered it, so she had to lean in rather than push back. Made a difference and then what I did was, I talked a little bit slower. I had lowered my voice. I talked a little bit slower, and I asked some questions. I asked her, “what is it that I can do so that we can get along together?” And then, I did something that I don’t do as much as I said. I zipped it and I listened and it’s called an accountability question.

So, I waited and she sat there and finally she said, “well, she said I often feel like you, don’t think what I do is right or good or appropriate,” and then I push back and she started sitting back.

Again, watch behavior. Watch body language. Listen to the words. What happened was, I made a commitment to be able to talk with her in a different way the next time, the next times we talked, but I said, “if there’s a problem, can you figure out how to come to me first and then we can discuss it before you start talking with your colleagues and creating a lot of stir of what’s going on.

So, please this is a quick tidbit when you’re talking with a rebel. Somebody who always wants to challenge authority, will lower your voice. Talk more slowly and ask the question, “what can I do to make a difference?

When in our relationship, see what happens. Let me know, and the book ‘Don’t Bring It to Work’ it’s a good one. Take a look at it.

Thanks so much. Talk to you soon.

Sylvia Lafair