In a recent conversation with one of my one-on-one mentoring clients, we had a lively discussion about what it takes to persuade senior management. This particular leader was frustrated with the challenges he was having in communicating with several of the members of the organization’s Board. We talked about how he could modify his approach with these individuals so as to improve his ability to persuade and influence. This conversation reminded me of an article on this very subject that I wrote almost ten years ago for the Canadian Facility Management and Design Magazine.
It’s not what you communicate, it’s how
Selling to Senior Executives was penned as part of the magazine’s regular Management Memo column, and in it, I offered four suggestions to significantly increase the likelihood that a facility manager’s message is heard, respected and acted upon. The advice is still relevant, and not just in the facility management and design industry; it is applicable in any work environment. Even if you’re not a facility manager, you’ll find this article helpful in enhancing your persuasiveness and credibility when it comes to communicating upwards. Essentially, it doesn’t matter what you’re pitching to your organization’s senior people because as long as you focus on how you communicate, you can significantly improve your chances that the top folks in your company will appreciate and respond to your advice.
As your skills as an exceptional leader and communicator grow, your level of interaction with your organization’s senior management will increase as well. You’ll find yourself in situations where your ability to persuade and influence others will stand you in good stead. For continued success, it’s important to realize that how and what you communicate needs to adapt to fit differing audiences. Specifically, you need to adjust your message and method of delivery so that it’s relevant and meaningful for an audience of senior managers. You can read the article here:
So I’ve offered you four ideas. What do you have to add to the list? What have you done to increase your influence and integrity with the senior leadership in your organization? Please share your thoughts by adding a comment below.