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Ep 23 Soft Skills

Uncategorized Oct 06, 2019

Soft skills are the intangibles that drive communication.

Let's discuss soft skills every school leader should learn.

Here are the 3 big ideas...

1. Assume Positive Intentions

Start from a winning position whether you are in a hallway conversation, staff meeting or reading an email. Always start fresh and assume the person you are communicating with has the same core values you do.

Even if the person starts with negativity or complaining, always assume the best. More good work happens when we assume positive intentions. 

This Forbes article argues that assuming positive intentions can actually help you see opportunities because you’re staying calm calculated. 

2. Ask Questions

How can you communicate without inserting yourself into the equation?

By asking questions you can show your concern and care without adding anything new. Asking questions is also a great way to dig for more information while leading folks to their own answers.

In the book, The Coaching Habit by Michael Bungay questions are essential in building rapport and coaching people to their own conclusions. Here are the top three question Bungay always has on hand:

1) What's on your mind?

2) And what else?

3) What's the real challenge? 

3. Listen

People desire to be heard. While listening is a soft skill, there are practical tips that can turn someone who "waits to speak" into someone who is actually listening.

In the specialize training program, Cognitive Coaching, participants practice the skill of Paraphrasing. This is a great way to show you are paying attention while gaining greater understanding. Without sounding like a robot, repeat the main point back to the person in a way that seeks to clarify.

You'll have to listen pretty hard to paraphrase in a way that the other person agrees with your restatement

Listen on  iTunes   PocketCasts  OverCast

In this weeks episode John and Luke talk soft skills for the school leader.

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