By Paul Swift
Effectively managing stakeholders is one of the most skilled and difficult parts of any improvement project and this subject is absolutely massive and only covered in our Master Black Belt Course however, I think it is so important, I decided to pull out some of the key aspects, hints and tips that I think you can put to use straight away. Almost always, the degree that you master this skill is the defining factor in whether any project is a success or a failure and here is the first useful thing to watch out for in your stakeholders – the different behavioural modes:
There are two types of Behavioural Mode:
- Default – This is the one you may have to look hard to see. The Default Mode contains all deep seated beliefs and prejudices, goals and drivers of the person and basic intentions, be they good or bad. The way to assess and spot the Default Behavioural Mode, or DBM of a person is not by listening to what they say but by analysis of how they say it and the behaviour that they exhibit. Once you know what you’re looking for, you will be able to spot a person’s DBM, which is the key to knowing exactly how to deal with them
- Assumed – This is the mode that the person wants you to believe is their ‘Default’ mode and quite often hides the intentions, beliefs and goals that they don’t want you to see. The old saying “Take people as you find them”, isn’t always the best to follow. Of course, some people are completely open and only ever display their default mode but you need to be able to know the difference. The Assumed Behavioural Mode, or ABM tends to be used by people adjusting to their ‘audience’ or prior to trust being firmly established. (This is the one shown to you by ‘Two faced’ people prior to stabbing you in the back!)
Always remember, the eyes ARE the window to the soul.