Come attivare una comunicazione influente e incisiva (e imparare il feedback di sviluppo)?

Why is it important to know how to activate an influential and incisive communication? 
It is generally known that what we say is perceived clearly and correctly by about 10% of listeners. A percentage that drops to 5% after a week.
If our goal is to make the idea we want to convey perceptible and memorable, we need some flavoring to spice up our words with.

Commonly considered as natural gifts of those holding a leading or managing position, the ability to have an influential and incisive communication is made up of ingredients we all have in our pantries and are potentially able to reactivate, train, and use:

  • We are influential when we know how to express ourselves with awareness and purpose, when we are capable of getting close to others util we touch them in order to understand their emotions, points of view, beliefs and to “shift” some of their thoughts and ways of feeling things
  • We are incisive when we put ourselves at stake, we risk making mistakes and getting into conflicts, but we trust ourselves and others, and therefore we are freer and more honest in being consistent, cut off the unnecessary, be sharp enough to leave a mark
  • Incisiveness and influence can be used to help others discover their own potential and enable them to use the available resources to bring it into the world

The secret to unravel stems from from a simple and, at the same time, complex idea: narrating without telling about oneself is the true limit of an incisive communication.

As a matter of fact, authenticity is the basis of an influential and incisive communication.

It is mistakenly believed that influence bears several analogies with the ability to consciously orient the relationship with the other rather than with experiencing it authentically. Here are some misleading assumptions:

  • influence is pursued through the application of schemas and rules that do not contemplate the world and experiences of others
  • it is assumed that all it takes to gain an influence is being clear, reasonable, kind or firm
  • influence and incisiveness are considered prerogatives of certain roles and not skills requiring training
  • we tend to focus more on what we want to gain rather than on who we want to gain it from, on exerting our power rather than on empowering others
  • those who influence remain on the surface, do not expose themselves, do not learn, do not support, do not take risks, those who influence make do
  • incisiveness is confused with rudeness or sacrificed in the name of tact and kindness

In these cases, the result is a team of people who aren’t particularly autonomous, proactive, consistent, agile, courageous or creative.

How to foster your effective communication skills

People are activated by all sorts of triggers whose their actions, direction and consistency cannot be schematized by any device. As a result:

  • each and every time, that trigger needs to be found out
  • in order to find it out, it is useful to have maps and instruments and to be trained to use them
  • maps do not exempt us from the need to explore and test, to give, ask and know how to use feedback
  • exploration involves fatigue, pitfalls, risks, surprises
  • consequently, it requires courage, desire, ability to confront the unexpected and tackle differences, to motivate onself and to have faith
  • once found what we had been looking for, we need to decide what to do with it, know how to use all the available resources, support others in finding new ones, train them, acknowledging and bypassing the constraints in order to put our thoughts into action and allow others to do the same.

The self-empowerment approach, therefore, focuses primarily on the “process”, that is, on triggering the desire and ambition to communicate at one’s best, and the confidence in one’s ability to succeed. In a later phase, when the client has turned down their fears or self-limiting thoughts, the approach would help them activate the necessary instruments.

Self-empowerment: a turning point

Training your influence and incisiveness in self-empowerment, means training to:

  • read oneself, not only as a professional but also as a whole, acknowledging both one’s own abilities as well as the efforts, constraints, and contradictions
  • being aware of one’s interpretative filters, knowing how to focus on our emotions, needs, desires
  • welcoming ourselves in all our parts and being capable of consciously using them in both relationships and actions
  • challenging our mental models and automatisms
  • being present in the here and now, interested and attentive, observing, asking questions, opening new possibilities, getting actived
  • saying whatever is needed and could be useful to others, exposing oneself, without sweetening the pill or pulling back
  • giving and asking for feedback, question oneself and others, pushing and getting out of our comfort zone, being uncomfortable, provoking, experimenting with realism, responsibility, trust, supporting others in doing the same, acting as protagonists, cheering and holding the space

Development and self-empowerment train these skills that relate primarily to self-narration, emotional contact and authenticity. These characteristics emerge from the ability to question oneself and draw upon one’s true resources before the acquisition and application of techniques.

Developing influential and incisive communication: micro and macro

In order to unlock the potential for incisiveness, realization and transformation within a company, a development project ideally works on several levels:

  • the training of managers in using themselves to the full, in order to create a context in which others can realize and evolve
  • the training of people and teams in the best use of themselves and their context to achieve and evolve

An incisive communication also lies in the ability of a given organizational culture to “authorize” frankness and authenticity. For this reason, an intervention on such topic will also have the ambition of updating or strengthening the team and the organizational culture by having them experience the potential embedded in new , ways of communicating.