|Spelling it out!
Sometimes middle managers are called upon to give a presentation or a talk on some theme relevant to their business situation. Past posts on this blog have offered a few suggestions on how to organise thinking around a theme. This one deals with a simple technique of focussing thinking on aspects of the theme itself.
I call the technique "What's in a word?" To use it, spell out the theme to be considered. Then taking each letter in turn come up with other words that are relevant to the theme. Let's take an example. Suppose you have been asked to explore the theme of leadership in your team or organisation. What would the characteristics of good leadership be? Let's spell out the word and see:
L: For me good leaders are people who Listen and Learn
E: They need to be good at Enabling and Encouraging. Energy helps
A: Staff note a leader's Attitude or Aptitude and sometimes their Adaptability
D: Leaders have to show Determination, be good at Decisions and chart Direction
E: How about Envisioning or Enthusing colleagues and staff?
R: Leaders focus on Results, are good at Relationships and Recognise their people
S: They need to be Sincere. Sure they can be tough but Sensitive when needed
H: In a workplace squeeze we need leaders to be Honest. Humility not Hubris
I: Integrity is a must. They need it to be able to Inspire
P: Passion and Positivity in leaders are vital and they have to put People first.
When you spell the theme out like that, the words follow naturally. So do others!