When Others Don’t Listen
Have you ever had one of those experiences where you’ve offered advice to someone and for whatever reason they didn’t listen to you? You’ve spent time pouring your heart and soul into them, offering advice that you think is important for them to hear but no response.
Then someone less connected comes along, says the same thing, and their advice gains acceptance. The new voice gets the credit for what you’ve been saying all along.
It happens all the time. With our families. With our friends. With our staff.
For much of my leadership life, I’ve been irritated by this dynamic. I can give direction over and over, but it’s often an outside voice that breaks through.
Embrace Outside Voices
As leaders, we can either fight this dynamic or embrace it. Embracing it doesn’t mean we give up on giving direction; it just means we need to look at our roles differently. While we need to both speak and model the way, we can also embrace outside voices to reinforce the principles we’re trying to cultivate in our teams.
You must bring other voices to speak to the issues your team needs to hear. You can’t say it all, and they won’t listen to you all the time anyway.
Good Leaders Let Others Have a Voice
Rather than feel the need to be the one with every brilliant idea, bring voices you trust to say what your team needs to hear.
It’s an act of humility because it means acknowledging that outside voices will often be stronger than yours. It’s a willingness to let go of the need to be the “know-it-all” and trust that your job is really to bring the information to the table in whatever form will get through to your team and influence change and growth. Your role as the day-to-day leader in an organization is to be the curator of content.
Become a Curator of Content
When you embrace this role, you can relinquish the need to be the one developing all the ideas, and instead, direct your energy to find voices who can help say it for you. You become a curator of content.
Scour DVD teaching series, YouTube content, training resources from subject experts, Podcasts, and business leaders in your community. Look around you for people who are saying what you need to say but perhaps in a different way.
And when you see that “ah-ha” look in your team’s eyes, don’t get frustrated or jealous that someone else said it. Be proud of the fact that you made the connection.
Being a leader doesn’t mean being the only voice. It means knowing how to curate the many voices that will bring the right ideas to help your team effectively carry out the mission.
Be the curator!
Keep leading well.
Jenni Catron and The 4Sight Group
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As leaders, we’re full of ideas and initiatives. We see potential and opportunity all around. We can almost taste the outcome, but often we get bogged down by how we’ll get from here to there.
The “how” can be overwhelming and discouraging, so we give up on our goals or fail to build a plan to help us achieve them.
These five steps will get you and your team on the path to moving from ideas to action! We’d love to have you join our community and access this free PDF!
Jenni Catron is a writer, speaker, and leadership coach who consults churches and non-profits to help them lead from their extraordinary best. She speaks at conferences and churches nationwide, seeking to help others develop their leadership gifts and lead confidently. As Founder and CEO of The 4Sight Group, she consults with individuals and teams on leadership and organizational health.
Jenni is the author of several books, including Clout: Discover and Unleash Your God-Given Influence and The 4 Dimensions of Extraordinary Leadership.