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Reframing: A Tool That Will Empower Your Team Everyday

Season 1, Ep. 2

Our words shape our reality. And they are based on the stories we tell ourselves about the world, ourselves, and others. This is why Reframing is crucial for leaders and human beings overall: it’s a terrific tool to shape the reality you want.


Reframing is a way of viewing and experiencing events, ideas, concepts, and emotions to find more useful alternatives. It is a practical and valuable tool to shift perception, including your perception of yourself or others’ perceptions of themselves. Think of reframing as putting on a different pair of glasses. What would you see if you put on a pair of sunglasses with a heavy tint when you were in a dark room? You would see shadows and dark forms you couldn’t identify. What would happen when you took off those glasses? You might see the most beautiful room in the world. When you switch your glasses, what you see changes. Reframing, mentally and linguistically, does the same thing. It changes the story you tell yourself about something.


How To Change Your Story


Harvard researchers proved a while back that the stories we tell ourselves shape our world. The good news is that we can also create new stories—the decisions we’ve made about ourselves, our abilities, and the world—and change our experience. Here are two examples.


In Business


Initial story: It’s really hard getting a job fresh out of college these days. The market is crowded, and overqualified people are competing for every single job. No wonder I’m unemployed— it’s tough.


Reframe: It’s awesome that there are a lot of people job hunting right now because it gives a person the opportunity to really bring his or her “A Game” to stand out. I’m sending my résumé in creative ways to get an interview, I’m doing more research than I ever have done before to prepare for interviews, and then I’m following up after the interviews using cool and creative methods. I am learning a ton!

See how the meaning shifts from defeat and deciding that job hunting will be hard (which means it will be, because that’s the story the person is committed to) to a sense of power, can-do, creativity, and agility?


In Personal Life


Initial story: I was a girl in a household of boys. My brothers and parents wanted another boy, so I was perpetually left out and labeled as a disappointment. I’ve never been good enough.

Reframe: I grew up in the perfect family to learn  how to see and honor my unique value. I was given great opportunities to be independent and forge my path in life. I also learned to be self- reliant, which has made me strong and fearless.


See how the meaning she is making shifts from disempowering to empowering?


Use Your Reframing Tool Daily


While tools like the Distorted Thinking Decoder and Neuro Storytelling help you reframe your situation, you can also reframe all sorts of scenarios daily.


Here’s how it works.


Imagine your spouse has just made the morning coffee. While scooping the grounds into the coffee machine, he or she has spilled a considerable amount on the counter. He or she doesn’t notice this and moves on to the next item in the morning routine. You could focus on the “bad” behavior, complain about the mess, start a fight, and have no coffee or affection that morning. Or you could practice reframing in one of at least two ways:


  1. Context reframing: These reframes work on the principle that every behavior is useful in some context. So when we change the context, we also change the meaning we make about another’s behavior. In this spilled coffee example, you could use a context reframe as follows: “Your spilling coffee means we are so much more privileged than 80 percent of the world who can’t afford to have coffee with breakfast!” This is exaggerated, yes, but it illustrates how drastically the meaning can change when you expand and change the context.
  2. Content reframing: Content reframes work by changing the actual content of the meaning you give the behavior. In the spilled coffee example, a content reframe might be, “Your spilling coffee doesn’t mean you made a mess. It just means you were rushing to make sure I was taken care of.”


The behavior and the facts of the matter are the same; we’ve just altered our self-talk to make different meaning from the coffee grounds on the counter. And after all, at the end of the day, do you care more about some coffee grounds or about your relationship? In the same way, which do you care more about in business: success as a team or blame and shame?


The Net-Net

  • When you change the story, you change the meaning, and you change how something feels: empowering or disempowering
  • Reframing helps us make new meaning quickly and easily
  • Reframing is a practical tool to shift perception, including your perception of yourself, things outside of you, or other’s perception of themselves


Resources Mentioned:


You’re busy growing. Let’s have a strategy session when it makes sense, which means you are…


· Committed to getting better results and finding out how awesome your performance can truly be

· Ready to make this a priority and get started in the next few months

· Allocating budget to improving the leadership, culture and results of you and your company

· Able to make the decision to move forward (or can convince the person who can)


Ready? Great! Please fill out the form here. If not, check out our resources and subscribe to receive news and more tools as they become available, and we’ll work together when the time is right.

 

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9/9/2021

Right Person, Wrong Role?

Season 4, Ep. 10
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The resulting chaos was confusing to the team and sending them deep into Critter State.The glaring gap in the consultant’s training curriculum was in sales. Even though their role was heavily client-facing, the consultants weren’t trained in the basic selling skills and had no incentive to do anything but fix technical problems. They also had no interaction with the sales team — which was sequestered in a different area of the building. The consultants were the right people in the right role — but with no support to perform their best.Harry, the new sales manager, had been with the firm for three months. Shortly after hiring Harry, the company had reorganized to close a failing business unit. Sarah and John had moved their niece, Toni, the VP of the failed unit, into a new role as the VP of sales and marketing —wait a sec! What? Did we read that right? Yep, the niece was given one of the most important roles in the firm after killing an entire business unit. 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Harry was moved out of sales management and into the right role — marketing —where he is brilliant and a perpetual learner. He still reports to Toni, who now manages the sales team directly. Harry’s initiatives have made Company X top of mind in their target market. Now that John and Sarah communicate more explicitly, they are no longer creating chaos, and Toni and Harry have developed a mutual respect for each other. Taylor had to be let go. He didn’t want to uphold the company values and had burned too many bridges to be salvageable.ROI: What They GotAbout six months into the change process, things got pretty scary. The consultants became resistant and didn’t want to work on internal projects for which they had no billable hours, and John and Sarah almost pulled the plug and reverted to chaos. Instead, they appliedenergy managementtools, worked through their own resistance, recommitted, and held their team accountable to the direction they had chosen together. 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8/26/2021

Special Episode: Inside Leadership with Guest Cheryl Farr

Season 4, Ep. 9
Cheryl Farr, Founder & Chief Brand Officer of Signal.CSK, is our special guest for this insightful episode of the Crack the Behavior Code podcast where we discuss the importance of finding opportunity in times of crisis and much more.Who is Cheryl?Cheryl builds accessible, exciting, audience-engaging brands and brand-driven marketing programs that strengthen brand power and drive real marketplace results. She founded SIGNAL.csk in 2009 to help organizations of all kinds realize and exercise their true brand power. She empowers organizations that value fresh creative thinking, purpose, alignment, and the strategic pursuit of excellence to be strong stewards of their own brands — and their people to be passionate brand leaders and evangelists. Cheryl and her Denver-based team work side-by-side with their clients to expertly align visual and verbal identity, products and services, organizational decision making, and marketing initiatives to meet brand and business goals. Their proven True, Meaningful, DifferentTM and Brand SignalsTM methodologies build brand value by illuminating what their clients can uniquely own in the hearts and minds of their target audiences and reinforcing it across all touchpoints. Hundreds of successful client engagements include Fairmont Hotels & Resorts, where Cheryl helped positon the then-fledgling brand for expansive worldwide growth; Taylor Morrison, the nation’s largest regional homebuilder, for whom she developed its first award-winning active adult brand; and PetSmart, where she led the sensory branding work that innovated the total in-store experience.Find Out More About Her Work Here:LinkedIn: Cheryl Farr | LinkedInWebsite: Home - SIGNAL.csk (signalcsk.com)Facebook: SIGNAL.csk Brand PartnersTwitter: SIGNAL.csk (@SIGNALcsk)
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Why Smart People Make Stupid Decisions

Season 4, Ep. 8
We’ve all been there.We make what we think is a rational decision. And then seconds, minutes, or days later we wonder “What was I thinking?!” Was it a temporary lapse of sanity? Were we just distracted and decided anyway?We knew it wasn’t the right decision or the best decision, but in that moment, we made a decision anyway. And it ended up being a stupid one. Why?[Shutterstock]The Science Behind “Stupid”Does this mean that we are indeed stupid? Nope. It simply means that not every decision we make is actually rational. We see what we want to see filtered through our inherent biases, and then we make decisions based on those biases. These biases are called cognitive biases and we all have them.Acognitive biasrefers to the systematic pattern of deviation from norm or rationality in judgment. These biases cause conclusions, inferences, assumptions about people and situations to be drawn in a less than logical fashion. 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Or How Bias Impacts BusinessNeil Jacobstein, an expert in artificial intelligence, notes that we all use AI and algorithms to mitigate and compensate for many of the following heuristics in human cognition (thinking):Anchoring bias:Tendency to rely too heavily, or “anchor,” on one trait or piece of information when making decisions.Availability bias:Tendency to overestimate the likelihood of events with greater “availability” in memory, which can be over-optimistic, overestimating favorable and pleasing outcomes.Bandwagon effect:Tendency to do (or believe) things because many people do (or believe) the same. Related to groupthink and herd behavior.Hindsight bias:Sometimes called the “I knew it all along” effect, the tendency to see past events as being predictable at the time those events happened.Normalcy bias:Refusal to plan for, or react to, a disaster which has never happened before.Optimism bias:Tendency to be over-optimistic, overestimating favorable and pleasing outcomes.Planning fallacy bias:Tendency to overestimate benefits and underestimate costs and task-completion times.Sunk-cost or loss-aversion bias:Disutility of giving up an object is greater than the utility associated with acquiring it.Click herefor a complete list of all cognitive biases.Jacobstein is fond of pointing out that your neocortex has not had a major upgrade in 50,000 years. It is the size, shape, and thickness of a dinner napkin. “What if,” he asks, “it was the size of a table cloth? Or California?”The Benefits Of Bias—And How To Optimize YoursBiasescan be helpful. They filter through information overwhelm, they help make sense of the world, they allow us to make quick decisions in a fast-paced world. Check out this recent challenge an executive coaching client of mine had.My client needed to hire a VP of marketing to take the company to the next level. He had four candidates that had made it to the interview stage and one had even made it onsite to meet with four different key stakeholders in the organization. I asked him why he favored this one candidate by such a long shot. As I listened I heard the following biases. He was showing:• Planning fallacy bias:Underestimating how long the process would take and what a great hire would cost.• Anchoring bias:Focusing on one piece of information (the candidate’s current job accomplishments but not his entire career—his resume hadtwo decades of one to two-year roles).• Availability bias:Because the candidate was successful (in a huge company with tons of resources available) he assumed he’d be successful in a much smaller company (with about 1/6 of the resources the candidate was accustomed to).• Optimism bias:Some of this too…thinking we’d have a solid candidate identified, screened, hired within sixweeks.I expressed these concerns, and how cognitive biases can be busted when you:• Take Your Time:You will make better decisions when you aren’t hungry, tired, or stressed. Taking time before making a decision allows you to have to think about the future and the impact of your decision.• Get An Outside View:Ask a trusted advisor or peer for their opinion.• Consider Options:What else could you do?Then he asked me to interview the candidate. I deeply questioned the candidate in each of the bias areas our client had. The result? They’re not the right fit for the company. Not by a long shot. The excellent news is our client avoided a costly hiring mistake and the super excellent news is that he still has three candidates that mightfit the billonce they are interviewed by carefully avoiding cognitive bias.While we’ll all still make stupid decisions now and then (welcome to being human!), once you understand cognitive biases you’ll mitigate risk by implementing the tools above.