Six Ways to Get Staff to
If You Have to Deliver
To deal with today’s increasingly complex work envi- ronment, many organizations become even more complicated, adding new coordination procedures and
structures. This exacts a heavy price as managers in the most
complicated organizations may spend 40 percent of their time
writing reports and up to 60 percent of it in coordination
meetings—leaving staff members struggling to figure
out their priorities. A better response is to create an environment in which individuals cooperate to develop solutions
on the ground.
A manager can encourage this coordination by applying
1. Improve understanding of what coworkers do.
2. Reinforce the people who are integrators.
3. Expand the amount of power available.
4.;Increase the need for reciprocity.
5. Make staff feel the shadow of the future.
6. Put the blame on the uncooperative.
Harvard Business Review, September 2011
Sooner or later, everyone has to deliver bad news. Dr. Robert Buckman, a medical oncologist and professor at the University of Toronto who has
been breaking bad news professionally for decades, has
developed a protocol to teach professionals a better way
to communicate bad news.
Setting.;Have the exchange in person. Sit less than
four feet away, keep your eyes on the same level, and
show interest by leaning forward. If it has to be done by
phone or video, acknowledge that medium is not preferred. Avoid text or e-mail.
Perception.;Find out what people already know or
suspect; it will ease them into the situation. If you are
about to lay someone off, you might ask, “How do you
think things are going?”
Invitation.;Prepare them for what’s coming. Say you
would like to talk about the situation so they know you
are about to talk about “something big.”
Knowledge.;Your delivery should be straightforward
and chronological. Never use jargon. “The economy is
bad, and the budget is down, so we have to cut staff.”
Empathy.;Acknowledge the person’s emotions appropriately. Be attentive and supportive, but don’t say “I
know how you feel,” because you do not.
Summary.;Do not end the conversation until you’ve
addressed their emotions and talked about next steps.
IT PAYS TO TRUST
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Entrepreneur, July 2011
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