Best Practice in Business
I know you are well aware of the need for all professionals to increase and refine communication skills in the workplace. Proof comes across your desk every day in research and articles. Evidence is seen in the functioning of your business partners or team. These highlight how increased self-awareness, interpersonal and communication tools and skills are necessary to grow a business and to succeed in your career.
Hopefully you are in a company, or you are the owner of a company, that provides both training and communication coaching as a regular part of your work-life, and that it’s an expected part of company culture. When this is not happening in your workplace—no matter your seniority—it behooves you to get these skills on your own.
In an oversimplified nutshell, that’s what is necessary and now considered “best practice” at work.
Dovetailing Work and Home
What is not discussed, is how you dovetail and coordinate communications about your needs at the office with your needs at home. When this functions skillfully and smoothly, you feel aligned and can be yourself both here and there. When it’s avoided or not integrated, you often feel isolated, pulled in opposing directions, leaving you unable to be fully present or engaged anywhere.
It’s Complicated, Not Impossible
So we are talking about smoothly interlocking career and personal life, but also smoothly coordinating you and your mate, considering where you are now and what you might want for your next phase. Now that’s complex! It requires awareness and willingness to see what you can create together.
From my decade’s long executive coaching, and business and career transition coaching with owners, career couples, and people at different stages of career transition, it’s clear that in many homes there’s not enough communication happening when it comes to major life desires and decisions. This gets people into trouble.
People frequently assume they have communicated or communicated enough. Especially if they’ve been married or together for a while. People sometimes feel or assume
- That if they’ve said it once, maybe twice, their mate will know where they stand.
- They talked about these things years ago, and assume there has been no change.
- One person is always in the lead, and the other will simply follow.
- They’ve been together so long, they feel their mate should just know.
From this flawed—but very commonplace—thinking flows a great many assumptions that couples do not always face head on. And this happens in the best, the most solid relationships.
A Shift in Perspective
An unique choice is to apply the same rigorous standards of communication, sharing, discussion, and decision-making to your personal life, that is applied in “best practice business.” Not only because things will go more smoothly, but because it makes you feel more connected, it’s more interesting, and often it’s more fun.
And in this extremely complex world of business growth, entrepreneurship, and dual careers, juggling family and demanding work, communicating thoroughly about both of your needs, both of your wants, and exploring both of your ideas about the next stage of your life together is crucial—for your satisfaction, and for the longevity of your relationship.
Raising a discussion of both your needs for the next stage of your life, may also raise differences or difficulties in the short-term. Many people are conflict-avoidant and want to shove the difficult aspects of transitions quickly under-the-rug. Where, chances are, you’ll trip on them later!
To avoid such a stumble—one that can inadvertently detour or derail you, resulting in a future of consequences you may not want—two things are important to do:
- Take Ownership for Communicating
It’s important to take ownership for being the person at the center. YOU ARE the intermediary between your business/career and your mate/family/personal life. It may mean you have to take responsibility to start the conversation if it’s not happening. Don’t wimp out. This is your future; this is your mate’s future. You want it to be a great next future together.
This is true whether you are an entrepreneurial couple (co-preneurs,) dual careerists, or you’re the owner of a big business with a mate running the home.
- Empower Yourself with Tools and Skills
Just like there’s a need for continuous learning on the work front, communication is a continuous learning at home as well. No matter how young or how mature you are. You don’t have to know it all or be perfect. What’s important is to empower yourself with the tools and skills to have these conversations at home and to learn how to make mutually satisfying decisions together. Or to have guidance from a coach who can walk you through the process.
This is just as true if you are falling in love and contemplating marriage, or planning a first child, or if you are wanting to sell or pass on your business and transition into other endeavors. And every stage in between.
Beneficial at Home
In my experience, when couples approach transitions together, they learn to turn what may appear daunting into experimenting and exploring as they create the next stage in their life. The experimenting and exploring becomes invigorating, brings couples together, and results in having more fun! This is especially seen in couples anticipating empty nest, business or career wind-down and somewhat fearful they may have nothing in common anymore.
When you own responsibility and empower yourself to communicate skillfully, to involve your mate equally in the conversation, to experiment and explore, transitions at each life stage become more integrated, thoughtfully planned, and thoughtfully carried out. So the impact is definitely beneficial at home.
Beneficial to the Business Bottom Line
Plus the financial benefits to companies and the business bottom line in terms of savings is enormous. The outcome is greater success of everyone in the company, and contentment on the home front which supports performance and longevity at work.
While typically unacknowledged as a vital part of company culture and career values, encouraging a wholistic approach that helps owners and employees actively support thorough discussion of growth and next stage transition culminates in huge savings; savings from fewer divorces that wreck havoc not only on families, but also on companies, careers and pocketbooks. Such cultural values support retention of good employees, smoother transitions of businesses and generations, as well as happier more productive employees—including the owner!
Please take a look around the website for ideas to increase your skills.
And don’t hesitate if you wish to discuss your needs and strategize how I might be of assistance, please send me a note here. Let’s talk!