“Our executive committee has been struggling for years. Originally, we brought Eric in to improve communication among members and focus the committee on what to work on. His help has made a tremendous difference. The executive committee now has a clear, shared sense of direction and has been incredibly successful in its work. Committee members appreciate his directness, expertise, humor and pragmatic approach. We've found his help so useful that we've had him back twice since and plan to work with him regularly going forward.”
Washington State Transit Insurance Pool
“After years of difficulties between labor and management, Eric helped us to create a new labor-management relationship at Lifelong. He talked with the players, identified issues, and designed and facilitated positive, productive meetings that have put us on the right track.”
former Executive Director,
Lifelong AIDS Alliance
Most people don't feel that they have enough influence in their work, influence with their boss, their peers, and, in many cases, even with their direct reports. To be effective in your job, to help the organization avoid mistakes and to achieve business results, you must comfortable and skilled in using influence with other people, regardless of your formal position in the organization.
Influence is essential. You have an obligation to be influential. Customers, constituents, shareholders, and peers depend upon you. Behind every debacle and scandal is someone who wasn't as influential as they should have been.
How do you become more influential? How can you lead without authority? The foundational concept of our workshop is "requisite variety." The law of requisite variety states that in order to change a system, you must be capable of a greater variety of actions than the system you are affecting. This means that you must have enough ideas, strategies and tactics at your disposal that you cannot be "outmaneuvered" by the people or systems you are hoping to influence. Leading without Authority provides practical tools to dramatically improve your "requisite variety."
Here are a few of the principles we cover in the workshop:
Hundreds of managers, knowledge workers, and project managers from business, government and non-profits have increased their requisite variety in our workshops.
Every day, directors, managers and supervisors are pulled in two directions —they need tomake decisions and get the work done while also making sure that they get people's input. Involving people is risky—you can get stuck in endless discussion. On the other hand, employees, peer managers, regulators—sometimes even your own boss—expect to participate in the decision. If you don't include them, you will be rewarded with resistance and resentment.
What is a "dangerous decision"?
Dangerous decisions are ones that people care strongly about. They care about what decision is made, and they expect to be involved in the decision process. They're "dangerous" because if you leave people out, they'll revolt—either actively or passively. Yet, if you involve them, you could face endless discussion, whining, and even outright rejection of your proposal.
Examples include reorganizations, budget or resource cuts or reallocations, hiring for high visibility position, layoffs or changes in pay and benefits, changing people's jobs, and shifting workload.
Managers in all sectors—companies, non-profits, and government—regularly face dangerous decisions. They need to make important, timely decisions while involving the people who are affected.
Do I have to choose between expedient decisions and involving people? Do I have to give up my authority to get a decision people will accept? The simple answer to both questions is "No."
The solution: Effective Engagement™
Effective Engagement shows you how to run decision making so that you can make decisions on-time, reduce resistance, and eliminate resentment.
Effective Engagement involves five distinct steps:
Corporations, universities, health care, state agencies, utilities, and municipalities are using Effective Engagement to get better results from decision making. The Effective Engagement workshop includes skill building, real life cases, practice exercises, a 40-page training manual, and a wealth of real-world tips and techniques.