As discussed in the introduction, establishing —upfront— a visible pathway that people can see in advance goes a long way towards building a sense of fairness, even if the content of the conversation might not be something they totally agree with.

The common mistake people make is when they start a well-intended conversation process (and they have a clear sense of direction in their own brain) yet they don't effectively communicate that to the other party. 

Visibility is your friend

There are a few reasons why you should map out the process in the early stages;

  1. It helps you get clear on the pathway
  2. It helps them get clear also
  3. It has you both working on 'it' (not them)*
  4. It helps them see the behavioural choices ahead of them, in advance

*This will make much more sense when you cover our METHOD module.

engage the thinking brain not just the emotional brain

It is estimated up to 80% of our brain's capacity is dedicated to visual stimuli. That's huge right? 

Yet often when in a discussion, we often simply rely on auditory channels rather than use the power of visuals. So take some time to map a process before you begin your conversation.

Stepping it out on paper, whiteboard or tablet…however you do it…just start doing it…map it. 

Download this discussion planner. It's #neklevel awesome. It gives you five guiding questions, and some takeaway 'chits' for each of you. So simple. So good. 

Remember to go visual. That's the start of any good roadmap. 

Start with shapes.

In particular 3 key shapes that are in just about every model and map ever drawn. Circles, Triangles, Squares.

Use circles to help define relationships (think Venn Diagrams)

Triangles help us establish hierarchy and direction (Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs)

Squares help us divide and sort (quadrant models and x&y axis charts)

If you become attuned to it, you'll notice a huge amount of visuals around you that can be used effectively. Org charts, strategic documents...there's a never ending array to play with.

But don't just take it from us, check out Lynne Cazaly and her visual mojo magic in the extra goodies area. It's gold. There are two videos to check out.

Extra Goodies: