Looking behind the curtain

Over the last few weeks I have read a number of articles on leadership and the challenges that today’s leaders face.   Whether supporting organisations to deliver business change, training or coaching, something that invariably comes up is how leaders effectively influence their teams.  

One simple thing we suggest is letting the team see behind the curtain.  Rather than being an organisation that imposes on their staff, letting your team or stakeholders know a little about your values and motivations can go a long way to galvanising them into action.  An effective tool we use when supporting leaders is to use public narrative to help them influence people.  The story of self helps people in behind the curtain as it communicates who you areyour values, experience and describes why you do what you do.   Effective influencing doesn’t end here though, there are two other elements to public narrative – “the story of us communicating who we are – our shared values, our shared experience, and why we do what we do. And a story of now transforming the present into a moment of challenge, hope, and choice”.   

Think about the last time you were truly inspired?  Was it facts and figures that triggered this or did someone share something about themselves or a story that compelled you to want to do something? Its often when you connect with someone on an emotional level that we are inspired to great things. Think of the release of emotion when Ben Stokes lead England to the most improbable test match win ever only last Sunday. We admire his talent, but it the scream he let out at the end is the lasting image – one that speaks volume for the journey he has taken in the past couple of years.

To be successful, leaders needs to win the hearts and minds of the people they need to change.  And one vital tool in your box of leadership tricks is to use public narrative. It will help you reach your audience and spur them to action.  It’s worth a go – why not try it out in your next coaching session!