business communication 71

Part A – Asking the Right Questions

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Convincing others to buy into an idea, a product, or an initiative requires listening and communicating effectively. Asking the right questions can help people to open up and to discuss upcoming changes more freely, while understanding that they have a voice in the process.

Scenario: Your company has developed a new initiative or product, or it is introducing a change to technology or personnel that will affect your team and its daily working environment. You are tasked with gathering buy-in from your team, as well as learning if they have any objections to this initiative.

You call a meeting with your team:

  • Briefly describe the new initiative and why it is important (e.g., a reorganization, a new product, a new technology, etc.)
  • Draft three questions for your team designed to gain buy-in and support for this new initiative

Next, share your communication strategy with us:

  • How will you know if your questioning was effective?
  • Your team needs to know they have a voice – during this meeting, how did you let them know you are listening to them and that their opinion matters?

Part B – Your Leadership Values, Executive Presence, and Winning

1. Identify 2-3 leadership values that are most important to you. Explain the reasons for their importance, using the below questions as a guide:

a. Why are these values important to you?

b. As a leader, why are these values essential for effective communication?

c. How do these values impact/support your executive presence?
2. Discuss a business leader (other than Jack Welch) who exhibits executive presence.

a. In what ways does this leader exhibit executive presence?

b. What aspects of his or her executive presence appeal to you? Why?

c. How does your leadership style compare to this leader’s?
3. Jack defines winning as, “Growing yourself, your organization, and your teams.” Describe what winning means for you.

a. What does winning look like for you?

b. Why is it important to you?

c. How do your leadership values support winning for you?