Partnership – Honesty, can it really be the best policy?

lion integrity

Mmmmm….interesting week!  I’ve been thinking a lot about my experiences in the last few weeks with others not always keeping their word.  I found myself moaning and ranting last night after a series of events and heard myself saying – actually do I really want to carry on in these partnerships? 

That is an option of course, to bail out, but like most things there is a cost to me of doing so.

I realised that for me the big disappointment here is honesty.  Others not always keeping their word is one thing, but the lack of honesty to say so and/or re-negotiate a new agreement is the piece I find extremely disappointing.

Then (thankfully) I remembered a promise I’d made to myself a while back:  What about me?  Where’s my part in this?  What am I doing? 

I made this promise to myself some time ago after being in a similar scenario – moaning about others and not doing anything about it myself.  I promised myself I’d be conscious enough to notice and then check out what’s going on with me.  The questions for me were: How am I taking responsibility for my part, rather than just moaning about what isn’t happening?  How can I encourage the behaviour I’d like to see?

So then I realised of course I wasn’t keeping my word to myself.  As much as I might be disappointed and sad about certain events, I could choose to be honest and give feedback to those involved.  I could choose to let partners know what had happened for me, both at the time and how I felt now.  The people involved may have no idea what’s going on for me.  Could I be making BIG assumptions about what they know or don’t know?  If I’ve made those assumptions, where then is the opportunity to learn, grow or even build a new (improved) agreement.   

Within this whole scenario, had I been honest about what I wanted or any expectations that I had?

How often do we do this as leaders with partners, teams or clients even?  Make assumptions and then get frustrated, disappointed, angry or resentful when things don’t go our way.

I pretty much know it is going to take a huge amount of courage for me to have these honest conversations with people.  And I want to do so without expectation or judgement.  That will take some preparation and self mastery for sure!

As leaders we are always modelling behaviour – what we are BEing as well as what we are DOing.

What behaviour will you be modelling?

See more about my leadership programme here…

No blog from me next week folks, so a very Merry Christmas  to you!!

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