5 Steps for Successful Email Communication

5 Steps for Successful Email Communication

Get Out of Your Stories Emails are dangerous because of the gap in communication elements. No tone, no body language, no context. As humans, our first instinct is to create a story to give us perspective on the message. This is how we decide our boss is fuming mad when we get a one-liner email. Or, how we decide Susan has too much time on her hands when she sends a four-paragraph email, the first and last of which are more like engaging in small talk. If you aren’t in face to face dialogue with the other person, you really don’t know.  Here are 5 easy steps for successful email communication. 1. Stop with the stories Take the actual message for what it is. If it’s not clear or context and perspective matter to your next action, clean it up first. Pick up the phone or go see the sender. Don’t be the person creating this week’s office drama because of a story you made up because you were too lazy to get the facts. 2. Know Yourself Take 5 minutes and look at your inbox. What details about the emails you process each day make it more or less likely you’ll engage? What makes it easiest or hardest for you to take action? Whose emails do you like most and whose do you like least? Why? (other than you just don’t like the message/data they’re sending) For example, I personally like emails with the specific required action stated first and a bullet point list if necessary.  Support or background info is OK, and I want it last with...
How to Build Abundance With an Attitude of Gratitude

How to Build Abundance With an Attitude of Gratitude

“Abundance is a state of being; it means seeing there is plenty and displaying behavior cohesive with that.” That was the first day I learned about an Abundance Mindset. Lexy, our founder, was sharing our Values at Trybal Performance. Wow, I thought. I knew the word abundance before but had never thought about it as a mindset. Lexy went on to describe how we act abundantly by: sharing resources collaborating have an attitude of gratitude & expressing appreciation regularly giving constructive feedback giving credit where credit is due, and providing solutions proactively I loved it. What I loved more than anything was the part about having an attitude of gratitude. I’ll never forget being in sixth grade and writing every day after lunch in our ‘Thank You Journals’. Our teacher taught us to write five things we were thankful for every day, and the memory has stayed with me. The discipline of sitting down and thinking about the good things in my life—the big sandwich my mom had made me for lunch, living so close to school, the play I got to act in—gave me access to feelings of gratitude on command! At that age, I’m not sure I’d ever been taught about gratitude and the wellbeing it cultivated, but it must be the reason it’s stuck with me all this time. It was my first taste of abundance. Years later, I cannot begin to express how different life is when my mindset shifts to believing there is enough to go around for all of us, that all of us can win and be happy. When there doesn’t have...
How to Have Awkward Conversations At Work

How to Have Awkward Conversations At Work

Addressing Policy Issues with a Direct Report In case you couldn’t guess what month it is, just walk into any major retail store. The arrival of spooky, creepy, and haunting decor is the hallmark of the month of October in the United States. Halloween reminds us that there are scary elements to this world and the worlds beyond. So, what better time to talk about one of the scariest things you may have to do this Halloween season – engage an employee in a policy discussion! EEK! If you’re in a leadership role, talking to your employees about policy issues such as hygiene, dress code, poor work performance etc. comes with the territory. When it comes to sharing this news, there is an effective way to handle the situation… and a not so effective way. While there are many versions of effective and (especially) ineffective, the framework of these two scenarios remains relatively static. In one scenario, the tools of enacting a tough conversation are implemented (Hint: effective). In the other, they aren’t- it’s really that simple (Hint: ineffective). Taking the “Boo!” Out of Feedback When you are delivering feedback to a direct report, especially if it’s negative, it’s best not to shock them with the news. Most people don’t enjoy having these conversations, much less feeling as though they are out of the blue. Base your approach on the severity of the infraction and the specific employee. For example, if a high performer with little to no mishaps comes in wearing jeans when they should be wearing slacks, there is no need to make a big production of it. This employee rarely, if ever, does...