Better conversations are at the heart of fostering a culture of peak performance. Conversations that drive business forward and accelerate the growth of the team are grounded in truth-telling.
In order to create better conversations, you must get to a place where people are willing to tell you the truth. In order to do that, we have to stop triggering fear.
Neuroscience tells us that fear is the number one thing that holds us back from bringing forth questions, curiosity, and collaboration.
You may be triggering fear without even knowing it. When we end our meetings with a “Any questions? We good?” instead of “What’s the one thing you want more clarity on?” we close a door to more engagement. Why? Because when we are afraid to admit that there are questions way after the fact—we do not want to look incompetent—the brain freezes.
That just breaks our Leadership Development hearts over here at 304 Coaching. We’re cheerleading for personal excellence…. and we know just how the brain works. When it is afraid to tell the truth or step forward because it takes time to process information, or expectations are mismatched, the result is poor performance and bad results.
Here’s how to do it better. Change the way you end a conversation. Play to the way the brain wants to work, with openness and safety. Advocate for an open door policy on questions, anytime and anywhere. By saying “one,” we give the brain permission to come up with one thing and then it starts a conversation.
“What is one thing I can clarify?” “What is one thing you need more information on?” “What is one question I can answer for you?”
Plant the idea that all of the information your team needs to accomplish anything is readily available to them.
As a leader, you also get the value of better conversations. With this mindset, you start to understand what questions your team could possibly have and identify holes in the explanation. With the freedom to ask questions throughout the course of the project, the questions they have will offer you insight into what they think and what they heard.
These are the kind of win-win situations that grow a top-performing team and smash assumptions about what a group of empowered professionals can do when their brains are happy and fear is just a four-letter word.
Now, before we close out this blog, tell us, what’s the one thing you want more information on? When—not if, but when—you have questions about what neuroscience tells us about how to grow high-performing teams and innovate company culture, reach out to us. We’d love to know what you’re curious about. In fact, it’s our favorite subject.
304 is the Talent Strategy & Leadership Consultant and Neuroscience Expert that helps organizations understand how the brain wants to work so that we can thrive at work. Learn more about neuroleadership.