10 Ways To Stop Being Professional And Start Being Personal

Ever heard someone say these famous words….?

“It’s not personal, it’s just business”

I get what they’re trying to say but I’d like to come back with the argument that everything is personal when it involves people. If we miss this important fact then we risk losing more than just our good reputation; you stand to lose team members, money, clients and ultimately fail in what we’re attempting to achieve. Here’s a few things to think about when it comes to dealing with people in a professional environment -

  1. Whenever possible, deliver difficult news in person.

    It’s so easy to deliver the bad news via a text or email. Not only is it easy, it’s cowardly. If you are tasked with conducting a difficult conversation then always make space in your diary to have a face to face meeting - although more difficult, you’ll be glad you did.

  2. Learn people’s names, interests and ask them about their family.

    There is nothing more encouraging than hearing someone recall your name. It shows they remembered you and that you made an impression on them. Our team/staff are not simply there to make up the numbers - don’t treat them as a statistic or just another in the crowd!

  3. Don’t underestimate the value of a persons potential

    We never really know what the seed of potential inside someone will one day become. Before you make that decision based on what’s good for the company, consider the value your team could have in 2-5 years from now. In my experience, when you see the potential in people you have a tendency to lead them differently.

  4. Break a rule here and there

    Stop being so stiff and professional - break a rule every now and then to show your human side!

  5. When you’re cutting the budget, consider the longterm impact on your staff

    Money can but a smile of your face and lack of it can make you miserable! When you’re considering cost cutting, take into consideration the longterm benefit of investing in a team member versus the short term financial gain.

  6. Bring coffee & donuts to the office regularly for the team

    There’s nothing more personal that a gesture of generosity. Try it - you’ll be surprised at the impact such simple things can have on the atmosphere in the office

  7. Celebrate special occasions of those you lead

    It’s easy to separate peoples personal lives from the job they do 9-5. Often it leads to a lack of buy-in and a loss of passion. Why not celebrate birthdays, anniversaries and personal achievements as much as you do employee of the month and hitting the sales target?

  8. Lose the corporate jargon

    Think carefully about the words you choose. In your mouth is the power of life and death. Words can be a weapon and should be handled with extreme care!

  9. Walk through the office slowly, regularly.

    When was the last time to walked slowly through the room - not to check up on anyone but to just say hi, be present and show an interest in your staff?

  10. Never say “It’s not personal…’

    Because when you do, what the person you’re talking to hears is…… ‘ This is personal…”

Andrew CherrieComment