Communicating More Effectively
Communicating More Effectively
In this, The Faces of Business, Michael Gidlewski, Founder, Achievement Unlimited Inc., shares how communicating more effectively can help your business thrive.
Michael has conducted countless training seminars and workshops for professionals from all walks of life in the business world. He facilitates business workshops to help business owners boost productivity at the individual and team levels, as well as in leadership effectiveness and mental fortitude. Michael’s clients’ profits and happiness have increased dramatically due to his results-oriented programs.
In his career prior to founding Achievement Unlimited, Michael learned the ins and outs of the business world and the traits that make successful individuals and enterprises. A successful businessman with a wealth of industry knowledge, he advises forward-thinking enterprises on revitalizing and expanding innovatively.
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Damon is excited to talk about mastering the skill of communication. He welcomes Michael to his show. Michael humorously comments at the program’s commencement that Artificial Intelligence (AI) can handle communication. Damon and Michael talk about the bittersweet relationship between humans and machines. Damon asks Michael to discuss his professional background to further the program in the right direction.
The guest reveals that he worked as a salesperson at a sporting goods business for twenty-five years. The salary and bonuses were performance-based. So, for Michael, more sales meant more incentives. Things did not go as he thought. He went broke, divorced, and homeless. “It created more problems.”
However, Michael remained resilient and enrolled at Paul J. Meyer—Success Motivation Institute and attended “a big three-day workshop.” There he learned about “incentive motivation” and “fear motivation.”
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The guest finally concluded that money is not a motivating factor for many people. “There were other things more meaningful and important to them.” Convinced by his findings, Michael bought a franchise in 1996 and “went out full time.”
Michael further explains why people do not reach more than 15% of their potential when they “have a tremendous amount of potential.” He helps people break the autopilot routine by allowing them “set meaningful goals for themselves.” He explains that these goals are not always money-based. They can be personal or spiritual goals.
He further argues that goal setting is “the most beat-to-death topic in the world,” but nobody has a process. Paul J. Meyer, he reveals, came out with his nine-step process that helps people do that. Moreover, he believes that comfort zones slacken our output. We need to break our shells to be great.
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Michael criticizes unrealistic goal-setting. Enron’s “four core values” served no good. While talking about poor communication, the guest believes neither technology nor application can make up for it. Very frequently, he asks people if they have had a conversation lately. They reply, “I sent him an email, or I sent him a text.” Michael believes this can be a machine-to-machine dialogue rather than human interaction. To interact, we need to talk to humans directly.
Agreeing with Michael, Damon requests him to talk about his motivation behind helping people communicate more effectively. The former reveals that twenty years ago, his coach and he did strategic planning together. The guest found it “absolutely amazing.” His coach told him about introverted and extroverted kinds of people. Similarly, he guided the guest on the “dominant, influence, steady, and conscientious (DISC) profile.”
Michael shares the crux of his learning. He mentions the golden rule, “Do unto others as you.” That is to say if A is a high dominant (D) and B is a high steady (S). If A communicates in their natural style, there is “a disconnect immediately.” It is because “the high Ds will dominate the meeting.” So the platinum rule is “Do unto others as they want to have done.”
He makes a point of learning each other’s style. Michael teaches the trainees this concept and creates “a whole matrix.” Poor communication leads to not only poor performance but also broken values. If we learn to flex our style into the other person’s style, our contact gets dramatically more effective communication.
From a leadership standpoint, Michael argues that a team should consist of diverse personalities. He talks about an assessment test called “Achiever.” It tests people’s fitness for job and leadership positions.
Michael thinks that in the current era, communication has improved. Moreover, urging the need for clear and effective communication, he says: “Whether you’re a millennial or a Gen X or a baby boomer, we still need to communicate with people.”
Michael reveals that many people complain about Zoom fatigue and the like. However, he believes his conversation with Damon on this Livestream is refreshing, for “I’m 100%… might even be more present to you.”
With proper communication, an entrepreneur can achieve the desired result. Conversely, if they push their teams, they lose their workers. Naturally, burned-out workers hold a grudge. This resentful situation gets bad to worse if neglected.
For effective communication, where understanding the DISC profile is the first thing, their expectation management is the second. The third is asking clarifying questions. Michael argues that there are five hundred most common words in the English language that have more than one meaning. In case of any confusion, clarifying questions ensure smooth communication.
He gives an example of his sales training in which he writes one word on the whiteboard and asks the trainees to write its meaning in their notebooks. Simple words like sales, salesperson, and dirtbag had many different interpretations. Moreover, the two-letter word “up” can alter the sense of a complete sentence.
Damon aptly summarizes that understanding the DISC profile can help company’s management put their subordinates in the right situations for success, “using the infinite capacity for self.” Likewise, based on that, they can keep workers out of situations. He further believes that although in manufacturing setups, communication is important, in retail and healthcare arrangements, it is critically important.
With these reflections, the conversation ends. Damon thanks Michael for his priceless time.
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Michael Gidlewski, Damon Pistulka
Damon Pistulka 00:01
All right, everyone. Welcome once again to the faces of business. I’m your host, Damon Pistulka. And with me today, I have none other than Miko get loose ski. And we’re going to be talking about the importance of communicating more effectively from one of the masters himself, Michael.
Michael Gidlewski 00:20
Hey, great to be here. You know what I think I think communication is overrated. I don’t think we really have to communicate that much in business. I think technology can handle it all. AI, artificial intelligence, just hit the button. Oh, man,
Damon Pistulka 00:34
you know what I that that discussion is definitely a hot topic right now. And I was I was testing it out a little bit over the weekend and this or in this week? Because I honestly, I hadn’t really thought about it that much. And that’s really sad. I know. But other than in general, you know, and some of the things that you hear people I know a lot about it, but it is interesting, the kinds of answers that it generates on some general business questions or more specific things, really. Because it’s, yeah, it’s it’s decent, but it’s just not human yet. Right. Anyway.
Michael Gidlewski 01:15
Right. And hopefully, it’ll never be you. Yeah, yeah. You might be in big trouble, then.
Damon Pistulka 01:21
You can tell I think, I think really, and we’re not gonna talk about AI today. But you can tell there’s some there’s gonna be some good practical uses for Oh, yeah. Yeah. Well, applications that can help lead people where they need to go and, and do that. So it’s definitely interesting. But no, I don’t think we’re have to worry about AI replacing everyone tomorrow.
Michael Gidlewski 01:40
Right? Right, right.
Damon Pistulka 01:42
So when we talk about communicating more effectively, that’s what we’re gonna be talking about today. That’s what you’re doing. But let’s start back a little ways. So tell us a little bit about what got you started in business? What really led you to the point where you said, I want to help business owners and leaders and do what you’re doing now?
Michael Gidlewski 02:09
Well, I was in the sporting goods business for 25 years. And everything was driven on results, right, including my salary and my bonuses. Right, and all the salespeople, right. So I was obsessed, if you will, with you know, turning the inventory, getting higher profit margins, and helping the salespeople make more money. And I just felt that like, that money was the answer to all problems, right.
The more money they made, the more money I made. That was a win win, everybody. Everybody’s great that Yeah, unfortunately, I found that after, you know, going bankrupt, getting divorced and losing my house, that money wasn’t the end all be all. It didn’t solve all my problems.
It created more problems, right? Yeah. And so I found this company, a Paul J. Meyer company called Success motivation Institute. And unbeknownst to me, it was a franchise, I went down for a big three day workshop. But I learned something about motivation that believe it or not, I had known I was motivating my people what rewards, right incentive motivation, or fear motivation, I always wonder why why everybody didn’t just, you know, blow the lid off of sales, why some people sat back, and because they weren’t motivated by money.
There were other things more meaningful and important to them. Right. And, and we see that more and more in today’s world, right? Where were millennials, they want to work for companies that that have meaning that do some, some social good, that give back that create, that have a really good culture. So I bought that franchise. And I started out doing that 1996 went out full time, and I’ve been running ever since.
Damon Pistulka 03:59
Awesome. Awesome. And that’s, I mean, really? I mean, you were starting this in the age when it was reward motivation. That’s what was that that was commonplace and the way people did it?
Michael Gidlewski 04:13
Yes. Yes, absolutely. It was incentive and fear. Do it or do it off fire. You know, it’s my way of the highway.
Damon Pistulka 04:22
Yeah, that’s for sure. So as you as you gone through this, what are when you very first started, what were some of the revelations that you had?
Michael Gidlewski 04:34
Well, I, you know, we hear all the time that people don’t work up to their potential, we have a tremendous amount of potential right, we tap into it, you know, the psychologist tells maybe 10 15% of our potential, and I realized that that that was what people were doing, you know, they were just they were on automatic pilot, mostly right.
So they’re just going through the routines and everything and I When we started to help them really set meaningful goals for themselves, goals that were that they had, that they really, really wanted to achieve, and not just money goals, but yeah, goals, spiritual goals, social goals, you know, learning goals, that people really, really got excited about it. And no one ever really talked to people about their personal goals, it was all business, right?
You know, God, we trust all this pay cash, how much can you sell for me this month. And that was that was. And it was just a very, very significant shift as people, because we give them a process to everybody. Goal setting is like the most beat to death topic in the world. But nobody really has a process. And Paul J. Meyer came out with his nine step process that really helps people do that. And it’s kind of like if you, if you go through the worksheets, and you do the process, you’re gonna hit your, your chances of hitting your goals go up dramatically, exponentially.
Damon Pistulka 06:13
And that’s, that’s the thing that, that it’s always a struggle to is is to make sure that your goals do align with the entire person in a business because it has changed so much. And you can’t just say, hey, we want this, this output or this quality, and, and blah, blah, blah, it’s you’ve the one thing and probably elaborate on this a lot. And what you do is that employee engagement piece of it, as part of your overall what you’re thinking about measuring and working on in a business has become more and more important.
Michael Gidlewski 06:53
Absolutely has it really, really had looking at, we have we all life and looking at that whole person, like you said, the total person. The other thing that’s really significant. Typically, we set a big goal like A B hag big, hairy, audacious goal personal bi, right, we have to become the person we need to become to achieve that goal. You know, if you’re, whatever, $100,000 a year salesperson or 200,000, our 300 or a million dollar year, so that’s your comfort zone.
And the minute you start getting the cuz I’ve seen this food for 30 years, even before, so there’s that salesperson goes up. And they’re they’re passing their numbers, the next quarter, they can’t sell a thing, because they adjust, they adjust back to their comfort zone. We live in our comfort zones. Unless you’re doing something intentionally to transform some real transformative work.
You’re going to stay there you can read all the books, listen all the tapes and have all all the information I am the greatest line. But you got to do the work. Muhammad Ali said I am the greatest and he spent seven days a week in the gym practicing to deliver that right to be the greatest Yeah, you teach us to be in front of your mirror in the morning. I am the greatest and then jump in your car and make your first sales call and practice that.
Damon Pistulka 08:23
Yeah, yeah, it is. It is about putting in the work. And then like you said in sales, there’s just so much that’s that’s one of them. I think where it is it’s almost a self fulfilling prophecy. Really, if you’re gonna go as far as you think you can go, and that’s where you’re gonna go up or down. Yeah, it depends upon Yeah, your, your mind first and then working on to get better and better at what you do.
Michael Gidlewski 08:48
Yes, yeah. And you’ve got to be, you got to make a mindset shift, right? You’ve really got to work on your stuff. If you’re going to achieve higher levels of whatever higher levels of income any area of your life.
Damon Pistulka 09:05
Yeah, well, yeah, just take it personally. I mean, to a personal level, your family, your spouse, your friends, whatever, if you want to be a better family member, it’s not just going to happen Right? Right.
Michael Gidlewski 09:20
Right, right. Right.
Damon Pistulka 09:21
If you’re if you’re crazy anger, anger, you know, bottle of anger waiting to explode you know, that’s gonna take some work to get that get that tone down to a point that it makes a difference. You know,
Michael Gidlewski 09:33
you better believe it, you better believe it.
Damon Pistulka 09:35
And it is it is interesting, though, that that we are I believe in a interesting point in time when we’ve gone through this cycle of so hard to hire people. People leaving so quickly that are you finding that now people are more into arrested in really looking at developing and helping the people they have
Michael Gidlewski 10:05
no question about it, no question about it. And they’re looking at their, at their culture. You know, we talk about culture, we talked about core values and core purpose all. But far too many times. They’re like that plaque on the wall over there that like Enron, Enron had four core values, that were, you’d look at them and say they’re great values. In fact, the first time I read them, I said, a great quarterback, I’m gonna use that in my presentations. And then later on, what happened was, they were just core values on the wall that nobody paid attention to. They were the espouse core values, and the company ran amok.
So that’s so critical. And now hiring people to get on the same page, if your core about personal values are not congruent, or in alignment, my core values, hell, we’re gonna have a big problem. I, one of my one of my companies, I work with a gentleman a year or two ago, and he liked I love the company and all of their core values, and they put some money into him. And this is what you get from business owners, right?
Why should I invest in them? And then they’ll leave? I said, You’re right, just don’t invest in them in the law state, and you’ll have nobody growing right. So they invested in any left. Within 30 days, for a lot more money. That’s the only reason you left? Yeah. Within 30 days, he’s on the phone with the owner, I’ll come back. Give this my job. Oh, I’ll come back. And same salary. I don’t want any more money. Realizing how significantly different the culture was? Yeah.
Damon Pistulka 11:48
Yeah. That’s one of the things that that I it’s it always amazes me because it’s well known, right? It’s well known that most people don’t leave for money, they leave for their masters, they leave because of culture, they leave because of working environment. There’s all these other things. And money’s like, third, fourth down the list, sometimes not even on the list, really. And we we, those same companies often focus on money, and don’t actually get to
Michael Gidlewski 12:19
write, right. So
Damon Pistulka 12:21
as you’re working with people and doing what you’re doing, is that part of the the, when we’re talking about communication today to let’s let’s but when you’re looking at communication, you’re looking at culture you’re looking at the way that they’re doing that is that part of what you’re doing is you’re really trying to figure out how the communication styles work together and how they can be good or bad for the people in the company, or what are you really trying to do with that?
Michael Gidlewski 12:49
It? It almost, it’s always in the top one, two or three concerns of a business. We got communication problem communication problem, we got communication problems. Nobody’s communicating silos, whatever. And, and then they do look for technology, right? That net poor, no technology will make up for poor communication. But they boy, no software, no nothing.
And, and they just like, I can’t tell how many times I’ll meet with a manager or delete the owner. And then we’ll talk about maybe some coaching some folks on a leadership team, right. And then I have a problem with employee. And I’ll come in every month or twice a month now say, Hey, David, did you have that conversation with that person we coach you on? And we talked about? Yeah, I sent him an email, or I sent him a text. How’d that go?
They’re the same. Of course they are. Because there’s no there’s no human connection. I sent him a text you know. I remember one one business owners so ticked off at her parts manager because his desk was like buried. Same thing. I said that. So we talked that coached her on let’s say on came back next month. He said, How’d that go? Heating? Get it man. I asked him if he found Jimmy Hoffa in that desk anywhere yet and even get it No kidding. Yeah. Well, it’s
Damon Pistulka 14:25
it’s interesting, because now, now explain a little bit about when you’re trying to help people communicate more effectively, what are some of the key things that you really need as a team? So I’ve got my leadership team, we got four or five people in here, and we’re going to sit down we’re going to try to communicate more effectively. So where do we start? What are some of the things we need to learn and then how do we utilize what we learned?
Michael Gidlewski 14:54
The communication is the very foundation for are the building blocks of our successful life, home, work everything right? And when I found what’s absolutely amazing, I was working with a coach like 20 years ago, and we’re doing strategic planning together. But before every strategic planning session we ever did, he did a DISC profile on to everyone that would be in the room. And I asked them, Why What are you just trying to sell these these profile things?
And he says, no, no, I need to know who’s sitting around that table. And all of their disk styles disk is the ISC, right, and it’s a personality profile. And it stands for dominant influence, steady, and conscientious. And then he told me about introverts extroverts, task oriented people oriented. And I realized that if you didn’t know who was sitting at the table, and you had SS, and C’s there who had most of the information, they weren’t going to say boo in a three, four day retreat.
Randy, and they had all the information, but no one would call on them, and they weren’t gonna raise their hand, because the meeting will be dominated by the high ds, and the and the and the high eyes, who are people oriented? So I do the assessment with every company, and what they get it, if they’ve never seen that, even if they’ve seen it, sometimes they like, Oh, my goodness, if that person has a different style than myself, and you know, the golden rule, what’s the golden rule?
Damon Pistulka 16:30
On a law firm right now?
Michael Gidlewski 16:31
Okay. Do unto others as you? Well, we say, that’s no good. Because if I’m a high D, right, and you’re a high s, and I’m communicating in my style, there’s a disconnect immediately. Yes. So we say the platinum rule do unto unto others as they want to have done to dungeon, right.
So we learn each other’s style, and then we teach, we lay the whole thing out, and then teach them the best ways to communicate with that style, the things, the best ways not to communicate with them, we create a whole matrix, right? And so each person, if they learn to flex their style, into the other person’s style, they’re going to have dramatically, dramatically more effective communication.
They’re going to you know, so that that is huge. That is try again. Now, that only works of course, if everyone flexes into the other style, yeah. Because I had a business owner who was high D, which is dominant driver, you know, task oriented, outgoing, task oriented, speaks in bullet points, be brief, his mantra was be brief, be bright, be gone. And I and I get it. So if he’s a high, I, an influencer comes into his office, it wants to have a big conversation about everything, right, and talk and, and the high D is like, be brief, be bright, be gone. So
Damon Pistulka 18:08
I think what you’re saying there, though, is is always an eye opener for me, and I’ve heard it a lot is just understanding the personality types of the people around you. Right? And realize it or not you
first? Yes. Yes. First of all,
Damon Pistulka 18:27
and and then because I learned about this a long time ago, when we were in, in some businesses, and we started to use personality based testing around hiring. Yes, yes. The biggest thing I learned from it is don’t hire somebody like me, for every position. And I think we in business, we if we don’t really look at that, it’s helping in the communication, those kind of thing, but we don’t look at that.
We don’t the personality understand him is so critical, because, you know, you may not want to put somebody that is, like you said, a high D person in as the senior accountant like that, right. And, and nor would you want to hire a, somebody that’s, uh, on the other side of the scale as a salesperson. Right? Right. And it’s so critical in that and the communication, the way what you’re looking for in the people and the kinds of positions and stuff and it helps you if I bet it when you start to do this. It really helps them reevaluate, maybe sometimes where people are at in the leadership.
Michael Gidlewski 19:40
Oh, yeah. Oh, yeah. And I have another assessment called the achiever which is dead on Job Match, job fit and a validity score. I remember years ago, I went into a company invited me in and I did the achiever on him. and three other folks on his leadership team, you could have overlaid every achiever on each other because he did just what you said he hired off all four people. achiever was exactly like him.
So he wasn’t getting any new ideas any any positive skepticism, any like, no, i How are we gonna, you know, double our sales or you know, do whatever crazy thing he wanted to do and he was always had crazy ideas. And everybody’s like yes, yes, we can do it. And then next month we did the first monthly management meeting and nobody did it. Because because their goals were they were beanbags, they were out of this world goals. Yeah, no one could hit him.
Damon Pistulka 20:47
That’s another great point. It’s when you understand the people on your team, you can make sure you’re getting diversity in your team as well. From a personality standpoint,
Michael Gidlewski 20:56
every person is unique, and wonderfully made and bring a lot to the table if we understand their styles and appreciate their styles and then work with them. So a two years ago, I’m doing a debrief about different Well, it’s the whole company, the owners every thought we wouldn’t do everybody in the company. So we did it group by group. And I’m in this group, this guy sitting to my left, and we’re talking about debriefing the four styles D, I S and C, and this guy is like, I hate people.
I can’t stay working with Billy. I mean, he was just like, he just didn’t want to, at no time for people or working with him. So as I’m debriefing, I’m looking at his disk, am I Yeah, no, no shit. He had no i, which is people oriented, high C. And hi, Dee. So he was task oriented and wanted to do all the tasks, right? So I talked to the owner and price. So look, this guy is you’re you’re going to lose him or fire him because he’s in the wrong spot.
Do you have another spot where he doesn’t necessarily have to work with people? Like maybe doing computer programming where you can lock them in a closet or something? Right? Yeah, yeah. Wait, I forget exactly what they found the job for him. And he’s happy there was a win win. But there would have been, it wouldn’t have been long if they didn’t find the right job for him that he would have been gone. Yeah, he was stressed out when I was debriefing him.
Damon Pistulka 22:30
Yeah, wow. So as you’re as you’re doing this, right, so you’re sitting here going in, you’re helping people understand different people. Now give us some examples about on a daily basis, how this is gonna help me as a leader, me as a team member, when we’re when we’re going throughout the day?
Michael Gidlewski 22:50
Well think about it, core communication leads to poor performance. Right? So that right away, quality is going to go to prominence is going to go down. Plus, depending on your style, if you’ve got a high D, CEO or driver, maybe even in sales, right, and they’re driving, they’re taking, not bad deals, but they’re taking deals and it’s going to take a lot of work to figure out or projects that are they got more moving parts than you could shake a stick at.
And then you’ve got a high see who’s the project manager who has all like a process, right? And everything, like what you just sold, none of that fits into that process. And it’s like a disaster. So I just did a i, right before Christmas before I left, right?
I did a company I think maybe eight or nine people that we debrief, and the again the light bulbs went on human beings have an infinite capacity for self delusion. Let me say that again. Human beings have an infinite capacity for self delusions. So high DS think that the greatest thing since sliced bread, high eyes think they’re the greatest communicator, the greatest they’re the worst listener. Hi, we all have assets and stuff, but us to the extreme. All of our strengths become our weaknesses.
So the to the CEO, I guess that the other person would have been really the second in command. They were at like they were going at it for a year. Head the head, they couldn’t agree on anything. And the minute that each of them. We debrief their styles, and they understood how different they were. Every time they met. It was like two people meeting speaking two different languages that the other one didn’t understand. And it just it was just they never got anywhere.
Damon Pistulka 24:59
Yeah, Yeah, because I, and I fill in here, but it is you see this in business a lot, the the owner, Founder, CEO, whatever, they tend to be kind of a visionary like, driver. And then when you look at the the others in the organization like the operational people or you know, get into the technical people or something like that, they have to be more detail oriented, get all the facts, process driven, those kinds of things.
And when you look at how different those two personality styles are, the CEO wants to be able to say, Hey, let’s go climb that mountain. And then the the other person there wants to go, Okay, what’s the path? What are the conditions? How many people are going, how fast do we need to do it? And this person wants to know nothing of that.
Michael Gidlewski 25:53
Right, right. And when we get there, and when he does that, to the person who’s looking for all those other benchmarks, that other person can’t take it, they’re like it because they don’t understand that, like, how could you just charge up that mountain? Right? And are you crazy with them, or they, they tell the person we want to climb that mountain. So the person comes back to him with the plan. And they said, We’re leaving today. This afternoon, they throw a hand grenade in the and those folks, they’re the high essence to steady relators. They’re the heart and soul of the best, they get all the work done.
They’re the producer to their steady at steady E to this nine to fivers and committed to the company. I mean, they’re great people. And you’ll never know they’re there. They’ll be at the lunch room. They’ll be in a meeting and they really won’t say boo, because they’re very introverted, but they’re just going to crank it out day in and day out their producers have in that sense, right? Not like sales producers, but your organizational come to a screeching halt without them.
Damon Pistulka 27:05
Yeah, yeah. Someone was demanding my attention, a 2020 pound West Highland terrier. chance they either let them in my officer here and bark. I was on mute there. Sorry. But that is so there’s so you know, because you’re right. And this is why I think it’s so interesting when we talk about communication, effective communication, how you do this.
And I learned it far too late in my life. And it’s still I mean, so beneficial, but in my management and careers, is I was perfectly alright with somebody saying we’re going off the mountain and then I’ll just figure it out. Right? And that just is not good for everybody. And when you start to try to use you don’t understand that man, it just really does paralyze people, the people that would get you off the mountain, you know how you want to wait, you wanted to exactly if they just knew what it was?
Michael Gidlewski 28:17
Right? Right. Remember the movie into thin air and the book climbed Mount Everest of the best of the best guys died disaster, you know, frostbitten pieces of their body parts on off. And yeah, it was it was it was a complete mess. Talk about pure poor communications at the ultimate level and not understanding who is on that trip. High s is the study really, they, they’ll do the jungle.
They want to know why. If you’re going to change up stuff, they want to know why they don’t just like like, hi, do. Yeah, we’re changing. You know, we’re pulling that software out and putting the new one in tomorrow. Right. So that they’ll change but they have to know the why behind the what you can’t just tell them look, just take take that hill charge up that hill. Are you crazy?
Damon Pistulka 29:10
Yeah, yeah, that’s for sure. So as you see the workplace today, yes. And you’re helping people today. Now we’ve got this unique situation where sometimes we’ve got three and four generations in the workplace. Yes. How do you believe that the multi generational aspect that we’re dealing with more today is is even leveling this up more the importance of understanding and communicating differently?
Michael Gidlewski 29:44
Oh, without a doubt, look, communicating. Whether you’re a millennial or a Gen X or a baby boomer, whatever, right? We still need to communicate with people. And when a lot of the disconnect act, there’s some disconnect over values and things like that. But the more the more training and developing I do, and the more younger people I have in these management, they’re like, rockstars.
I’m like, these kids are what I mean, they’re doing the programs are doing the homework and doing the assignments. And like, with the folks my age, they’re like, I have to listen to that. I have to read that to do the assignments. Yeah, if you want to, you know, they just push back all the time.
And it’s it just because they’re like, they’re like, been there done that, you know, 6065 50 to 670 range, and I don’t want to learn anything new, I don’t care. But when they do also, when they learn each other’s see, when you get your, when we do the disc, you get your own copy. People read it, right. They’re like, Oh, my God, oh, my god, I just did this in 10 minutes. And, and I get this 25 page report. And it’s about it’s so so accurate. There was a lot of pushback, right, that poll, baloney. That report.
That’s crap. Yep. I said, Well, we have a way to validate that. Are you married? Or do you have a really good friend that you could give the report to? And let them read it and let them give you feedback? Yeah, I do. I did. We’ll do that tonight. And when I come in next week, we’ll talk about it then. The next week they come in, they’re like, Yeah, my wife or my husband said that report was absolutely positively throw it out. absolutely accurate. And that is me. Again, human beings have an infinite capacity for self delusion.
Damon Pistulka 31:48
wrote that down, that is such a great thing. Because it is I mean, we think we think what we think,
Michael Gidlewski 31:55
yes, yes. And when you understand like that, that other person, whoever that other person is, and you want to in you want to have more effective communication, you also start to be a little bit more empathetic and especially if you’re a high D. So I had an admin who great great, great, a high s, which is what I need it steady, do all the work, get it all done. And I remember one morning, this is before the pandemic and when she would come in the office and she came in I said hey, how you doing?
Good, good. And you could tell by the body like my everything right? She was good at all. I said listen, on a scale from one to 10 with 10 being you can’t get any better life is good. One you’re ready to jump off a bridge. I said where are you now? And she said like a four? And I was like whoa, I pushed my my my chair back and said okay, let’s let’s talk before we even Yeah, we we talked half hour 15 to an hour and I’m like look get all you know, here’s 10 PowerPoints that forever here’s this get this get these you know, I don’t want to talk about anything be brief, be bright and be going just get the work done.
But I buy new she’s important to me she’s important asset to my company. If that asset is important enough, then I better take some time to do it right to take care of I take care of my car every 3000 Miles change your oil filter, rotate the type do all this stuff. So it runs forever, right? All copiers, whatever they all maintenance agree my computer. My tech guides are in there every single month doing a scrub doing the the cyber doing all that stuff, right? Why would they take care of my people like that? I knew immediately something was off.
So spend a little time talking to her finding out what’s going on. Not that I could solve any of those problems. But you know what? The greatest gift we can give somebody is our presence. Being here. We don’t realize that Look how little yet how gigantically significant that is, or I work with a leadership coach one time and he we used to get together and have lunch and I’d go off on some rant and he’d say, Do you want me to listen? Where do you want me to listen and give you feedback?
And it was a great question. Because some days I’d say just listen, I don’t want I don’t want any advice or feedback, nothing. And other days I’d say no, no, I want you to listen. And I want to give I want you to give me feedback. But what a great question. Do you want me to listen to you? Or do you want me to listen and give you feedback? And I was right there. I was like, we were eyeball to eyeball. You. That’s so powerful. What a gift that you give someone
Damon Pistulka 34:50
that’s it. That first of all, the gift of presence is it’s the lady said is the best as gifts you can give someone and things like this make it much more difficult. But it makes it even more precious when you do give it. Yeah. And I think that, that a first of all is is if you can, like I said, if you can do nothing else, but just stop and focus, when you’re talking to someone that makes that’s that’s it and you don’t even have to know all the other stuff. You do that one thing that’s a big step.
Michael Gidlewski 35:26
Yes. Yes. It’s a gigantic step.
Damon Pistulka 35:31
Michael Gidlewski 35:33
It’s It’s one small step from mankind for man, a giant leap for mankind or something like that.
Damon Pistulka 35:42
You’re right, you’re right. Because you know, you were all a we’re all human. We were not. We’re not great at a lot of things. Like you said, we have that infinite capacity capacity for self delusion. But if we did nothing more that just said, I’m going to concentrate on the people I’m talking to. Yes, yes. It does. Listen to what they’re saying. Yeah. I think we can get that part, right.
Michael Gidlewski 36:05
I don’t. I mean, a lot of people are complaining about zoom and zoom, fatigue, and all that stuff. We’re having a great conversation, and I’m totally 100% Might even be more present to you. You know, because I’m not, I’m just focusing on you. And not the other stuff around me. Not the shiny object. Like I love books, obviously, you could tell that. So I think it’s it’s valuable. And I, we would have never even met if it wasn’t no, yes. Yes. You know, zoom, this type of technology. You’re out on the West Coast. I’m on the East Coast. You know, there, this
Damon Pistulka 36:44
is something we talk about communication, I think there for me and the whole, this, you see all the not a lot of companies are are mandating return to the office more days or full time and things. And I think they’re, I think the COVID pandemic just made it necessary, right, we’re gonna have to run our business like that.
Right, right. But as we look at towards the future, understanding your people and into using it to communicate more effectively, like we’re talking about is is, you know, a great way to utilize that. But the other thing it does, and I was talking to Noah, who’s a that was on the on the show earlier this week, and he was talking about, they have a software product that helps with periodic evaluations.
And it’s time nine and given justice. It’s not an evaluation, but it’s more like a three year anonymous thing. So but that’s not my point, my point is, is that if you understand the personality profiles of the people that are on your team, you’re going to be able to see that Damon is this kind of person, and Damon is going to be or not going to be effective, working outside as effective working outside the office, or may need some additional coaching or help to work outside the office or maybe even be the one that needs to be in the office because they’re going to work in that much more.
And I think while it is very beneficial to be able to offer a hybrid work environment, it is no doubt added complexity to the management not just because we got people in different places. Because now we’ve we’ve also incorporated that other variable, that some people work well in an office and some
Michael Gidlewski 38:48
Right, right, right. That’s a great point, too. Because, yeah, you started to
Damon Pistulka 38:55
think about all this stuff when you go communication. Yes, communication is number one, but but and, and want to say but and understanding these people better that allows that communication also, that understanding allows you to help them develop better help put them in the right situations for success, and keep them out of situations that like you said, with our infinite capacity for self. They will put themselves in that they think they’re going to be successful, but they know they’re going to bomb. Yeah.
Michael Gidlewski 39:29
When I went into business, this business on my own, I get out of this morning, which was every single day of my adult life. Before I went it was because I went to an office and I had no office I had staff everything right. I mean, it was all there. And when I started this business, well, I don’t need an office. I work out of my house. What a mistake. That transition of like, well, you know what I’m here I’ll just throw a load of wash in I’ll just do this so that it was a disaster. It was a it was a real disaster, it took me a while and I had to get out I had to get out.
Damon Pistulka 40:07
And that’s that’s that kind of understanding that we have of ourselves and the others around us because I really think it when you when you look at it businesses communication, I’ll tell you, it’s, it’s, it’s interesting for me personally now that we help more companies and healthcare and, and other things that aren’t like starting out in manufacturing, you got the whole technical aspect of what we’re building and all that kind of stuff that that drives some of the some of the things that you need to worry about.
But when you’re working in, in a business that’s so people focus like, like a retail or healthcare setting, it is, it is even more critical to understand this. The people that how they work together, personalities and everything.
Michael Gidlewski 40:52
So only if you want to get great results. You’re gonna lose your people, you’re gonna burn them out, they’re gonna be pissed off. They’re gonna hold a grudge, they’re gonna, you know, it’s, you’re gonna have a lot of resentments going on. It’s just a bad bad scenario.
Damon Pistulka 41:08
Yeah, yeah. So if you have to tell people listening, what are the two most important things they should think about? If they want to help their organization communicate more effectively? What would they be?
Michael Gidlewski 41:26
Well, without a doubt, understand the DISC profile of every single person. But in addition to that, when you’re having a conversation with anyone, whether you know the style or not, is asked for feed, ask a question like, Damon, let me make sure that I understood what you just said, or what you just ask, okay, just to make sure that we’re on the same page, right?
Because I’m a poll lock. I’m a little slow on the uptake, make poke a little fun the left, but then you’re gonna give feedback. I gotta say, this is what I heard. I’ve done this before. And they say, No, no, no, you’re that’s not? No, you you’re way off. Okay. Let’s try it again. And so asking, and people don’t want to do that, right, because they get the bobblehead.
First of all, if especially if you’re a manager, and you’re telling an employee what to do, employees like to Bob, Billy, Bob, bobbing your head up and 1960s Chevy. And they walk out of the room. And they say, What the hell’s he, he or she has no idea. But they’re there. They’re not they don’t want to embarrass themselves or, you know, put themselves on the spot. It’s easy, the older you get to because then you don’t care. You just say, Look, I don’t understand, help me out, you know, helped me out. Because I don’t get it.
Damon Pistulka 42:51
I’m not the only one that thinks that because it does get easier. And it is and that is what I do. I come back again to communication and, and setting that expectations for people to ask when they don’t really understand is something that leaders really need to do, because it makes it a tremendous difference.
Michael Gidlewski 43:08
And the second thing is expectation management. What are your expectations from this conversation? What are my expectations, you get expectation management. And again, that were validated some way feedback, whatever. Then there’s, there’s there’s no mutual mystification. And that’s what happens all the time. mutual mystification, nobody knows. Nobody knows what the hell’s going.
Damon Pistulka 43:39
expectation management, so we got understand the profile, your profile, and the people, make sure you’re understanding what they’re really saying to you. And then manage expectations.
Michael Gidlewski 43:51
And ask clarifying questions if you don’t understand. Look, everybody, not everybody, but lots of people in their, their own businesses, right? They have buzzwords for everything. So even when I’m doing these workshops, I’m like, Excuse me, what’s that? BH mean, that BW H the what?
The XYZ or whatever, right? And people around the table to quit. Yes, I know what that’s right. People have been around a long time. We all buzzwords for our business. And and even worse than that, the 500 most common words in the English language have 15,000 different meanings. Do you think there’s some opportunity there for for a problem for a challenge, right.
Damon Pistulka 44:38
So 500 words have 15,000 the 500 most popular words in English language have 15,000 meetings.
Michael Gidlewski 44:48
Yeah, when I would do sales training, I put up on the I said, Alright, everybody I want you to get take a pencil paper, and I want you to answer this question. I’m gonna wait a word and on the on the whiteboard, you’re gonna write one word. And I want you to write all the words you think that that means I’d write the word sales salesman or salesperson. dirtbag, high pressure, you know, loud suit, fast talk.
I mean, like, they had no problem coming up with 50 or 100 words to describe that night, say, Okay, I’m gonna do the same thing with a different word, education, all kinds of stuff. I had a guy do it one time with me. When I’m one of my coaches in a in a group, you set out circus.
And people were clowns, you know, all circus and the fur and I was the first one I said, Washington, DC. And usually looked around like, Well, that was when you said, circus. That’s what came to my mind. Right? I got a great one for you. Now I’ll share the story because this, this is a word that has multiple meanings. Okay, I think it’ll drive the point out. It’s easy to understand up meaning toward the sky, or at least top of the list. But when we awaken in the morning, why do we wake up at a meaning? Why does a topic come up? Why do we speak up?
And why are the officers up for election, when it is up to the secretary to write up a report, we call up our friends and brighten up a room, we polish up the silver, warm up the leftovers and clean the kitchen, we lock the house up and some guys fix up an old car. At other times, this two letter word has a real special meaning people stir up trouble line up for tickets work up an appetite. And think of excuses. Here’s the conflicting use of the word up. A drain must be open up because it is stopped up. We’re blocked up. We opened up a store in the morning, but we close it out at night. No wonder folks are so mixed up in the world.
Damon Pistulka 47:21
That is a great example. Because they have a gazillion meetings are on the way you used it. Wow. Well, Michael, it’s been awesome talking to Dave, I communicate more effectively.
And you know, and just to reiterate understanding the importance of using something like a DISC profile to understand the people you’re trying to communicate with making sure you’re understanding and managing expectations and asking good clarifying questions. And then, as you said before, learning how to flex into other people’s style. So you’re communicating with them the way they they really need to be communicated with rather than your style when it’s appropriate.
Michael Gidlewski 48:03
And then in
Damon Pistulka 48:08
the last thing you said to I think is really, really drive home. The reason for the communication is 500 words and 15,000 meetings. Yes, yeah, that’s right.
Michael Gidlewski 48:25
I couldn’t I couldn’t swipe
Damon Pistulka 48:27
that just the way it works. But the 500 words and 15 500 most use words in the English language of 15,000 meetings. And then your use of the word up in so many different situations clarifies the need for communicating more effectively, succinctly. So, thank you so much for being here today, Michael. Thanks, everyone for listening. I appreciate your taking the time with us, Michael,
Michael Gidlewski 48:55
you’re very welcome. You’re very welcome. Great chance
Damon Pistulka 48:58
to get a hold of you. What’s the best place to get a hold of you?
Michael Gidlewski 49:01
www.achievable.com or email@example.com or pick up the phone and have a real conversation at 610-496-0399
Damon Pistulka 49:18
Awesome. Awesome. Well, thanks for being here today. Thanks everyone else and we will be back again next week. Michael just hang out for a moment we’ll talk Okay.
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