What’s so hard about being Fierce?
Well we aren’t talking about ripping out each other’s throats. We’re talking about an inner strength such as is needed for fierce loyalty. Fierceness is required to speak our truth while asking questions, engaging in a tough topic to learn about another’s perspective, and being authentically ourselves all while enriching the relationship.
Last month I listened to a First Nations elder speak at a wedding. He expressed the need for relationships to be built upon communications that are both honest and respectful. Do we have relationships where we are not as honest, just to come across as nice? Have we ever been so honest and upfront that it hurts the individual? Where maybe we forgot to approach the conversation with respect? He encouraged the attendees to work at balancing these two key components for successful conversations.
If we aren’t being honest and respectful in our personal relationships, won’t it be that much harder to be honest and respectful in our professional relationships? Many times I have seen a supervisor turn off their human side, their heart, their feelings, as they gear up to deliver a disciplinary action. As leaders, it’s part of our job to point out when someone is on a non-productive path. If we can remember to have the conversation early on – before we are sure of the employee’s intentions – it becomes a gift to the employee showing we care about their future being successful. And that fulfills another part of our job, to coach our employees to be the best they can be.
Enriching relationships is one of the 4 objectives of a fierce conversation. So, while we may be honestly pointing out our truth in a situation, we need to do it in a way that enriches and builds our relationship with that individual.
Cheryl R Good
Certified Fierce Conversations Facilitator