What’s your story, TWO minute manager?


Everyone has heard or read about the “One minute manager“, the classic managment “telltale” book by Blanchard & Johnson’s published in the late 80’s. In this post I’m trying to advocate for the “TWO minute manager”, not to be taken literally, however, it suggests that it’s not as easy as it sounds – and an important tool for getting your point across is using the format of “The One minute manager”.

Undeniably, one of the most important tasks of leadership is making sure that everyone in your organization knows the direction and priorities so people further down the hierarechy knows what to decide when faced with everyday decision in the work environment. You may argue this is why you have a vision and a strategy document in the first place, however, I have found that communicating the strategy is not as easy as it sounds.  Another way of disseminating your intentional message throughout the organisation is running a thorough “strategy process” involving all levels of the organization. Although, I am a believer in engaging everyone in this process is both costly and time consuming – and still in order to have an effect, the process would have to be repeated frequently.

For those involved in the process of generating, comprehension of the strategy is not an issue, – although I’ve found that even in this case oppinions differ somewhat – and undeniably the situation is even more challenging when it comes to those that were not connected to your strategy process.

But how do you get the attention of your audience, and how do you get your message across, where we’re increasingly bombarded with messages in a torrent of information?

This, of couse, whe the blessing of communcation comes in. From experience, I’ve found that telling a good story or anecdote is a very effective way to show people what is important and establish trust that you believe in the strategy – show your passion – share your stories.

For a pleasant read and a good strating point to understand how you can create your stories please see “Made-to-stick“- (see also my shameless praise of this book in my review)

In your quest to create your story:

  • Say WHY the goal is so important for the team or organization and PLEASE say something about HOW you’re going to get there
  • A good leadership story has to appeal to heart and mind and must contain the following ingredients:
  1. The story refers to something you’ve experience and what you learned from it
  2. The story strikes a cord with the audience on an emotional level because it is relevant to them and they can relate to it
  3. The story inspires people becase you pour your enthusiasm and authenticity into it
  4. The story shows the tention between the goal and the motstanden you will face when you’re going to reach your destination
  5. The story is illustrated by a vivid example
  6. The store contains important insight.

And last, but not least… it is like everything else: It’s hard work! After all it is not a “fairytale”…

Good luck!

Kevin…

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