With concussions and CTE rising in football, soccer, lacrosse and other impact sports, you would think they are the most dangerous. Maybe it’s sports like volleyball (rotator cuff), dancing (knees), or wrestling (just about anything can get damaged here)?
You’ll be surprised by this answer …
Drumroll please …. It’s the Debate Club
Since 2013, we have seen a huge increase in rules changed on college campus. And the main reason cited; we don’t want to hurt our students feelings. Safe zones, virtue signaling, emotional triggers, and words describing things that I never thought would be part of American culture, are taking over our campuses, and soon our businesses.
There are many theories as to what is happening and why. We are not entertaining those here. Your question is probably, what does this have to do in a leadership blog? It is simple. It’s the concept that Impact is more important than Intent. How a message is perceived by a person or a group, can effect how, or even if, a policy is executed properly.
In this book “The Coddling of the American Mind“, Jonathan Haidt and Greg Lukianoff, go to painstaking details on this subject of ‘safeism‘. Creating such a safe environment to remove all the risk of emotional scarring, danger, or trauma, has created a new environment for leaders and communicators. As you read or listen to this book, they discuss how removal of peanuts in the early 90’s, has lead to a major increase in peanut allergies.
If we remove everything that can offend a person from society, they never learn how to deal with adversity! That is what.
Communication is Key
We have all heard, it’s not what you say, its how you say it. This means more now than ever. Each word in an email or text, can be pulled out and held against you. As a leader, you must be aware that words mean things, and without the proper explanations, they can lead you to ineffectiveness as a leader, or even your dismissal.
The ability to use soft skills make up 85% or more of a leaders day. It’s not engineering, science, math, or IT, it is learning how to effectively deal with people. Understanding them, getting them to understand you, and connecting with them in a way that they want to follow you! You can not always say the right thing. But on those times you do sway off the path, if you have built enough trust and respect with your followers, they understand that the intent wasn’t there at all.
Looking for ways to improve your soft skills? That is exactly what we focus on at the Kole Performance Group! Contact us to help you craft a communications strategy, roll out an improved company culture, or just provide another look at an important communication you are about to make.