"All the world's a stage, And all the men and women merely players:
They have their exits and their entrances; And one man in his time plays many parts" — As You Like It, William Shakespeare
You just cannot afford to have sloppy communication skills if you work in a high performance organization. And this is especially the case when it comes to running effective meetings.
Many organizations hemorrhage away the one resource they cannot get back—time. It’s an invisible loss, one that does not appear on the financials. The absence of effective meetings cause no end of frustration in the ranks. Poor meetings have been endemic in American business for decades—like a genetic defect passed down to each generation.
Fortunately, time lost in meetings could be reduced by simply upgrading facilitation skills—especially meeting communication skills. Great group facilitators have mastered the 26 communication skills they must know about to move a group forward.
These communication roles don’t last long—from a couple of seconds to a few minutes. Yet these twenty-six communication skills greatly impact group effectiveness by determining how well group members handle information or even understands what’s going on.
— Facilitative Leadership—Understanding how to play the role
— Playing the 10 task group communication roles that insure the job gets done.
— The 6 relationship communication roles the build bonds between individuals
— Recognizing and controlling the 10 self-oriented roles that disrupt group progress
— Identifying four personality types the produce dysfunctional behavior.
When managers and other responsible persons in business organizations are asked how much of the work day is spent in communicating, the replies range from 85 to 99 percent."— Harold Zelko and Frank Dance
Course Material is under copyright and is to be used only by individual students.
Copyright © 2014 by Murray Johannsen.
You will notice that as you watch the lecture, a slide might be up for thirty seconds or more depending on the length of the explanation and whether there is a story present. If you concentrate and memorize you will be able to watch this video once and learn the roles. This is the first step—understanding.
In a meeting, there are two major leadership roles. The classic role is the autocratic leader. This person in effects act like the king or queen. Their authority is unquestioned. Obedience is expected. However, there is there is also the facilitator style of leadership. This is more subtile and more participative and democratic.
Relationship or maintenance roles in general are more difficult to play that the task orientated ones. Essentially, they exist to strengthen the bonds of trust and to prevent constructive conflict from escalating into destructive conflict.
The twelve roles here can be extremely difficult to deal with. Some of these are characteristics of personality and so are difficult habits to change.
There are many positive communication roles one can play in a group. To learn how to play them well, however, first requires that one is able to associate the words with the role. This exercise is designed to have you develop word phrases one can use to play a particular role which were memorized in the video lecture. Some roles, especially the task ones) are relatively easy to play. Others, such as many of the relationship roles, are hard to play. Being a great mediator for example requires years of training and complex understanding.
Before one can intervene in group dynamics, one must first become a good observer. This assignment is designed to have you learn to be an observer and to think about the roles played in a group. It turns out that groups that have difficultly may not be playing the right mix of roles. It is not unusual to see some groups so focused on the task, that key relationship roles are not played enough.
A good facilitator understands what role is being played at any moment of time. This is primarily an exercise in learning to recognize both task and relationship roles. By doing this exercise, you are learning what roles are dominant, and what roles are not played. So for the top three you observe, ask yourself whether it was the right three for that meeting. For roles not played, ask which ones should have been played.
Use the following worksheet to assess self-centered roles being played in a group. It's best to do the same group over several over several meetings and then aggregate your scores. Otherwise, one could be looking at a false picture. Remember that in groups, most communication roles are played rather unconsciously (including yours). A good observer understands what role is being played at any moment of time.
Observe and document as many self-oriented roles as possible (including any you might be playing). This is an important exercise since you need to know that people are creatures of habit. They tend to repeat patterns of behavior. For example, if someone complains in one meeting, they are likely to keep engaging in this type of behavior over many meetings.
Use this summary worksheet to document the interventions you make in a meeting. For each one, also make a judgement on whether the your intervention was effective. Simply use a plus and minus.
"A competitive world has two options for you. You can lose, or if you want to win, you can change." — Lester Thureau
Unfortunately, many forget once this advice once they start work. Plus there are many, many skills not taught at universities that you will need to learn on your own. Other This course contains one of those skills sets — a competency that develops the skill set required to function as a:
• Transformational Leader, or
• A Great Founder
Books smarts is necessary, but it’s not smart to neglect the skills the university didn't teach you and employers expect you to have. You need to develop an “unfair competitive advantage."
FOCUS 1: GROWING TRANSFORMATIONAL LEADERS
Being able to change and being able to change others helps you stand out. This involves building four transformational competencies. They are to:
• Develop a TRANSFORMATIONAL MINDSET. Lets face it, the system wants you to conform. Innovators think differently from the rest of us—and so do great transformational leaders.
• Build the Skill of SKILL DEVELOPMENT. Sad to say, few, very few managers could tell you how to build a skill. This results in billions of training dollars lost each year.
• Boost Your SOCIAL INFLUENCE. Remember the old saying, "Lead, follow or get out of the way?" Bosses who cannot exercise the nine elements power are not strong leaders, they act like a followers; and they probably block the way forward.
• Strive Toward SELF-MASTERY. Organizations continually focus great efforts on process improvement, but most forget about pushing continuous personal improvement. To borrow a phrase from the Army, you must "Be All That You Can Be."
FOCUS 2: DEVELOPING GREAT FOUNDERS
By definition, someone who turns a start-up into a large enterprise is a transformational leader. We add concepts from Great Founder theory so entrepreneurs understand that they are unfinished works, destined to keep improving themselves and work on the right skill sets.
I teach as an adjunct professor at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), Korea University (Seoul) and Woodbury University (Burbank). Plus have an MBA from the University of Iowa and a M. A. in Psychology from Harvard University.
A final word worth remembering when you look at Udemy classes. It goes, "If you think the classes are expensive, try costing ignorance."