Hey, everybody. Bill Gallagher with another conversation with you about something that gets in the way for leaders in getting commitment and action more often. How do you get more yeses? How do you get more commitment, more action out of your people, your partners, your customers, members, like anybody? How do you do you get yes in action much more often? There’s something that gets in the way again and again, I’ll cut to the end. What gets in the way is you. You and me, we get in the way. And what gets in the way, specifically about us is all of our fears and doubt and things like that.
I’ll give you an example. I had this guy, Jim come up to me after one of my keynotes, and I shared in the thing a story about my dad. And Jim came up to me because the story about the dad resonated, and he starts to share his story about his dad with me. So Jim was the CEO of a professional services company. He’d been around for a long time, and he hadn’t ever figured out how to raise his rates and how to grow the business, and he was really struggling with that.
But what he really wanted to talk to me about that day was his dad and who his dad was for him and how he wanted to live up to his dad. And then he shared this little story with me about cleaning the garage and how his dad disapproved of him, and it wasn’t ever good enough. And you could see as he kept going back and forth between then, it now in this story about his dad that this thing, I’m never going to be good enough had made Jim this incredibly hardworking, diligent, conscientious guy like that was deeply wired in and connected to everything about him and the way he lived.
And I smiled as I heard the connection. He wasn’t at all noticing it at first, and then I called it out. He’s like, oh, yeah, I guess there is a connection between the childhood that I had and the way that I grew up. And he stopped there, and he thought that was really interesting, that he hadn’t come up to me at all to talk about that, but that growing his business was exactly why he was at the conference. So I said, Listen, I’ve done a lot of things for myself over the years, and I have a suggestion for you, if you notice this, right, you’re very hard working, very rigid, but you don’t have a lot of room to swing out.
You don’t have a ton of confidence. I suggest you try some things out of character. I suggest you try, like, anything like dance, improv, comedy, singing. I don’t know. Just pick things where it’s not just all about rigid professional like rigor, where you get to play and be silly and cut loose a little bit and improvise and adapt and see yourself in a new light. Anyway, I heard actually, a couple of years later that he actually did that, and he loosened up quite a bit. He was able to also shift that relationship with his his dad, who had since passed on, but he had sort of made peace with his dad in Arrears, there in his soul.
And then he loosened up. He tried something. I don’t remember what it was anymore, but he had since not only grown the business a little bit, but sold. Retired and spent time doing what he loved. And that was just fantastic little story. And I think we so often get in the way. All of our personal concerns and doubts about who are we and are we good enough, are we too much of this? All this concern puts our focus on ourselves and not on the other person.
And when you’re focusing on yourself and not on the people you’re trying to do business with, pitch, promote, sell, to, hire, engage, like, whatever, then you’re not going to be nearly as effective. If you can be just totally at home with yourself and over with the other person, you’re going to be much better. So we’re not going to sort out all of our neuroses in one conversation, but you could set them aside. You could say, oh, that’s going on there. Let’s just put that over there, bring some self awareness to it, set it aside, deal with it in your next therapy session, and actually check in on what’s going on with the other person on the other side of you.
I found that to be enormously helpful for me in developing my business. Look at what’s going on here with me, with the guy in the mirror. Set that aside and focus on the other people around me, and I get, yes, commitment and action way more often when I play that way than the other way.
I hope that’s been helpful for you. My name is Bill Gallagher, scaling coach and host of this Scaling Up business podcast, where we bring our show to you at least once a week with something new in the world of leadership to grow your business, to develop yourself as a leader.
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