We all have an ‘operating system’. Ever notice that when you talk to some people they just “get it”. They understand the vision, the conversation, and how to live in the solution. What about others? Those with a different operating system. How do we get our work done, when dealing with others that have a different operating system?
When we live in the solution, it can often be a challenge for us to deal with people that live in ‘problems’. These people are all around us. They put up road blocks to their own success. They attempt to block the success of others; without even realizing it. They often have a list of objections to forward progress. They are the first to point out why it can’t be done, but rarely think about solutions before they ever present a challenge.
They resist change. They use words and display behaviors that say “I am a victim”. They fail to recognize they are stuck. They see challenges as personal attacks. They lack vision and creativity. They impede progress, all the while pointing to the outside world proclaiming ‘it or them’ is what is really broken.
If we are interested in living in solution, we can recognize that certain people may just have a different operating system. Regardless if we believe they are born that way or they chose to be that way, when we can drop our expectations about how they ‘should be’, we can make the process of dealing with them more effective; without exhausting our patience.
We can chose to see these adults as “little children” who have aged, but have not matured. After all, anyone in this state, is merely operating from emotional immaturity. So we set a course and when they act up, or act out, we can choose to be non-reactive. When we are secure in our vision, and move forward with our plan, they may resort to ‘adult temper tantrums’. We can learn to chuckle at them as we would a small child who melts down when told NO!
In business, with our families, our children and in life in general here is what we can do.
1. Recognize the A players. Make time for them. Make a point of creating space for these people and dedicating 80% of our time to them. Often times we allow the D players to eat up our time and focus. This actually rewards the D players, because after all, they want attention, in any form we are willing to give it. They are the ones who gobble up our time, and energy, if we allow it. When we focus on them, they suck up our good will, and we become intolerant with the best people on our team. So flip this. Pay attention to the best players, because two creative minds will feed of one another and make everything greater. They will appreciate the opportunity to strategize and we will be uplifted by what they have to offer.
2. Identify the D players and cut them lose. They will never change and they will drain resources Just one person like this can adversely effect an entire team or process.
3. The B and C players may be necessary either short term, or from a place of ‘loyalty’ or need. That’s ok, they are the ones we only dedicate 20% of our time to even though they may be 80% of our team. We give clear direction and leave no room for debate. They are usually self interested enough to whine a bit and then get on board. If we allow them to dominate our companies by leaving them in positions of power, charging them with projects or constantly interrupting our day then we are short changing everyone; including ourselves. Even if an A player has a smaller role or title, put them in charge of projects, but make sure to make it clear they are in charge and everyone must follow their lead.
What is interesting, is the B and C players usually fade into the background when they realize they will not get the attention they are looking for. They often have a lazy streak and are happy to allow others to do the work. They like to sit around and talk about how bad ideas are, how they will not work and spend very little time actually doing any work.
So when a B or C player acts up, allow ourselves to purge their negativity. Instead, consciously think about our A player in that moment and go say thank you, great job, well done! If we use those moments of irritation to instead turn our attention to the people that live in the solution we will be instantly restored to a higher vibration and won’t allow our own irritation to drain our life force.
It is a simple concept but requires higher level awareness and a shift of our focus and attention. The effort will pay off, because the A players will be energized, and will perform at an even higher level for us. They will consciously or unconsciously pick up the slack because they “get it”. They have a different operating system; a much more powerful one and they are eager to rev up and do good work.
So reward them. Pamper them. Compliment them. Pay attention to them. They will do amazing things and it will shift the entire team into a different state.