Buying Influence

Advice I give to all advisers in organisations is to “buy time”. That is, when engaging with busy leaders ask for a minimum of time and “buy time” by delivering a highly valuable experience for the leader.

Last week, Culture Strategist, Executive Mentor and Author Meredith Wilson gave me a new bit of advice I can pass on to advisers while she was presenting to my Risk Leadership Group on culture and the challenges of effecting cultural change.

Her advice goes like this. When you go into a meeting with stakeholders, say to yourself you have $10 to spend in the meeting. If you ask a question, you have spent $1. However, if you make a statement you have spent $5, meaning, you better ask good questions from there on or you better make an absolute killer of a statement when spending your remaining dollars.

The message is clear. As advisers in organisations, we should do a whole lot more listening and questioning, than telling. So, please, put $10 somewhere to remind you of this before your next meeting with the business. Try it out and I would love to hear how you go.

P.S. SAVE THE DATE: On August 30th at midday, I’m excited to launch my new book, ‘Team Think: How Teams Make Great Decisions.’ I would be delighted if you could join me to celebrate this milestone and learn about what has sparked my fascination with the complexities of decision-making over the years, as well as my deep understanding of the challenges involved in getting strategic, big-bet decisions right. Registration link to follow soon.