By Brenda Hampel, Founder and Partner of Connect the Dots Consulting and
Getting the commitment you need from coworkers can be achieved by taking a more collaborative approach.
Collaborate to Gain Buy-in from Peers
Susan, is a senior analyst in the healthcare industry, was sure that a strong and assertive argument for her point of view always would result in the influence she needed to achieve results. However, she was frustrated by the outcomes of recent interactions with her peers, noting that – even though she had presented strong reasoning for why she felt certain changes were important – they did not seem to understand or buy in to her recommendations.
Strategies to get buy-in:
Inspiring the commitment of her coworkers often can be achieved most effectively by taking a more collaborative approach.
- Approach the issue from your peers’ perspective. What issues do they need to address?
- Ask open-ended questions. Show that you are interested in their area and needs.
- Create a win-win situation. Connect your point of view with their needs.
Susan noted that she had been taught that her credibility and expertise alone “should” carry the weight and influence needed to affect organizational change and that she had not previously thought there was an effective approach. But, she later reflected that a more collaborative approach made a lot of sense.
The first time Susan tried this with her counterpart in a regional office, he responded as he had with Susan’s previous style: he expected her to push instead of ask questions. However, the next time the coworker talked with Susan, and the exchange was much more of 2-way conversation. Susan was very pleased with the outcome.
If you are interested in learning more about what skills are needed to advance your career, take a look at the Innovative Leadership Institute offered at the Colorado Women’s Chamber.
As Founder and Partner of Connect the Dots Consulting, Brenda has taken her expertise in the areas of leadership, team alignment, performance and onboarding coaching—and helps organizations design and implement solutions that combine proven methodology with practical business application.
Brenda’s specialty is in the facilitation of leadership team sessions and discussions. Her years of experience as both a corporate human resources executive and management consultant and business acumen allow her to facilitate complex and difficult discussions by creating a framework, surfacing the necessary information and input, then pulling it together and creating commitments for next steps. This powerful process allows organizations to pinpoint with laser-like accuracy the areas that need attention so they can reach their goals faster.
Brenda graduated from The Ohio State University with a BA in Communications. She is a speaker and co-author of the books published by McGraw-Hill, Solving Employee Performance Problems: How to Spot Problems Early, Take Appropriate Action, and Bring Out the Best in Everyone, Perfect Phrases for New Employee Orientation and Onboarding: Hundreds of Ready-to-use Phrases to Train and Retain Your Top Talent, and, and Talent Assessment and Development Pocket Tool Kit: How to Get the Most Out of Your Best People. The Talent and Development Assessment Pocket Toolkit, also published by McGraw-Hill