Stop Being Nice and Tell the Truth

While it has been said that Canadians are some of the nicest folk on the planet, I think many people, including those beyond our Canadian borders are ineffective in their communication and perhaps don’t tell the truth because they’re too nice.

Why is it so hard to say “No”?

So you’re having a party and you invite all your friends, and then you start receiving the rsvp’s.  Inevitably some people will say “I’ll see what I can do…” or “We’ll try to make it…” or “I’ve pencilled it in…” All of these answers are a “no” that was not wanting to be spoken.

We’re afraid of hurting the person, or being seen as rude or mean.  And heaven forbid, if we were to actually decline an invitation and not have a valid reason for not going!  Somehow, we feel that we need to have an excuse, a prior commitment, a more pressing responsibility, before we can send our regrets.

It’s all hogwash.

We deserve the truth. And we can be honest, compassionately.  The party host is grateful for clean yes and no rsvp’s because then he/she can plan accordingly.  There’s nothing worse that preparing food and refreshments knowing that you have a dozen people who are maybe’s.

The same is true for giving feedback. Your team, students or children deserve the truth about their performance and behaviour.

Effective feedback is a gift.

It doesn’t matter if someone is telling you that you have food on your face, or if they’re telling you that your reports aren’t up to snuff, if they deliver the feedback honestly, compassionately and constructively (with detailed suggestions for behaviour improvement) then they are doing you a huge favour.  They are handing you a beautiful opportunity to become a better person, or to get better at what you do.

Have the courage to give the gift of effective feedback so the world is a better place.

And here’s the flipside…

You are colluding with a person’s inner saboteur if you are complacent about their performance.  You’re enabling them to continue under-performing.  And you are propagating mediocrity in the world.    YUCK!!   Aren’t you up to bigger things than that?!

Share your thoughts with me right here on the blog. Don’t forget to leave a link back to your own blog too if you have one via the commentluv feature here on the site.

Until next time, be resilient.