In your interactions with other people, do you always get the result you’d intended?
For a full copy, click the diagram above and then right-click to download or ‘Save as…’
If the first part of Self-Awareness is getting really clear about your Intention (see this article here), then the second, perhaps even more important part is to practice noticing your Impact in the form of the Result that you got.
What happens when you interact with someone else; and was it what you meant to have happen?
There’s a rule we use in my kind of coaching which says that:
The meaning of your communication is the response that you get
It’s tough rule to follow because it’s telling us that, no-matter what we said or did with someone, no matter what our intention was at the outset; what we actually communicated was exactly what the other person says it was – even if their interpretation or response was radically different from what we meant!
It is the meaning that they ascribe to your communication that counts, not yours.
Of course, this rule is only important if you want to have really effective interactions and communications with other people. If not, if you’re happy to say, “Well, I don’t care what they actually did in response, I told them what I wanted to tell them anyway,” then this rule doesn’t need to apply to you.
There are lots of communication skills that you can use to maximise your chances of making sure that the message and meaning you meant to communicate is what somebody else actually hears.
What I want to focus on for this article is the skill of Self-Awareness, building on that first part around being clear about your Intention. Once you’ve done that, you can turn your observer’s lens towards the Results that you get:
- When you say something to people, are they hearing what you meant them to hear – and how do you know?
- When you do something for somebody else, do they understand why you did it, and again, how would you know?
Awareness really is the key here. Most of the other skills are about saying or doing things in a slightly different way, often to better match the other person’s style, and with a bit of experimentation almost everybody can broaden their range and learn to match it to other people.
But you won’t even know to do that if you’re not monitoring the Impact you’re having.
So that’s the Self-Awareness skill that I’d like you to practice next. It’s the red box in the diagram above. Did your interaction with another person get the Result that you Intended – and how do you know?
As usual, please leave me a comment if they’re still open below, or tweet me @NickRobCoach to let me know how your Self-Awareness is doing and how you monitor the results you get from your interactions with others.