The following content was first shared by Patrick on 26 October 2016.
The results are from a dipstick survey done on what has made branding essential and also the discovery on the importance of communication for effective work flow within a system.
I recently took some time to understand what were the roadblocks that were causing delays in some of our on going projects. Well, delays sometimes do happen in projects and I wanted to see if it was something within or beyond our control.
The most common feedback I received when asked about the key reasons causing the obstacles was that the people they were working with were not cooperative and / or did not provide the necessary information or work that they promised, on time.
Most people that we choose to work with are amazing people; they are good hearted, hardworking and generally have strong work ethics. So why are they not responsive? Upon deeper probing, I uncovered the following valuable opportunity. Many people assume that once they have informed or made a request for information from someone else, the responsibility is automatically passed on to the recipient of the request.
Based on my observation, due to the vast amount of tasks (and personal things) an average working professional has to deal with in Malaysia, people are genuinely busy and pressed for time. So, therein lies the opportunity and the realisation on how important communication and “sales” skills are in doing business (successfully) in Malaysia. To perform well in our tasks, we will inevitably require information and input from others in our team and external stakeholders. This is unavoidable in our line of work. Hence, it is imperative for us to develop our ability to sell, to persuade other people to give us a little part of their valuable time; to give some attention and focus to what we need.
What are the ways we can do this I hear you ask? Here are some quick tips.
- Share with them WHY it’s important for you to have the information or work that you need; highlighting the consequences / impact on the results and team if you don’t get the information by a certain time.
- Get them excited about the results of what you can put together as a team. People are more likely to revert to you quickly if they are enchanted by what you are trying to achieve and a stakeholder of your results. They may even offer to be part of what you are working on!
- What can you offer in return for what you are asking? To reiterate, people are busy and are trying to deal with their own priorities. What can you do to create value and help them in return?
- The Nudge. Once you have communicated your WHY and WHAT’s in it for them, your job is 90% done. You only need to nudge the person in case he / she is genuinely preoccupied with something that they are unable to attend to your request immediately. So, they just need a friendly reminder.
All in all, the important thing to remember is that the responsibility to complete your task is yours and YOURS ONLY. Saying that you can’t complete your task because someone was not cooperative only reflects on your own incompetency, your inability to communicate and persuade convincingly that someone to work with you.
That said, if you felt that you have done all you can to enchant the person but still not get cooperation, then it’s time to bring it to the team as a sticky that needs to be addressed. In my experience, change always start with ourselves. 99% of the time, we and we ourselves make the difference.
Recently, I delivered a talk about branding and top trends. To strengthen my presentation, I asked my peers in the industry on what they think about the world that is changing that has made branding essential and what they think is the most important brand marketing trend that works to build and scale successful businesses. What I promised them in return was that I will share with the summary of my dipstick survey. I collected about 20 feedback mostly via WhatsApp in 2 days. Please see attached the highlights of the survey.