How to Deliver Ideas Effectively
The Pastor made a decision.
It wasn’t what I wanted or asked for, but I got on board with the decision. Leaders make it happen and don’t complain. But then…After a few weeks, what I warned them about came true. Then a big incident during service brings attention to the decision. “Boom Shakalaka, I’m right, happy dance time!”
That backfired! Surprisingly, the next time I made my argument, it was harder for everyone to see my way was better. Then I realized I have to get my pride out of my presentations or I’m going to fall hard. My attitude was causing the presentation to fall short.
“If I’m operating in a healthy environment, how do I make a presentation of ideas that resonates with my boss?”
1. Be humble and realize you don’t see the entire picture.
Human beings are self absorbed. We think we have all the facts. Go into every meeting humbly. You may not have all the facts or understand your boss’ limitations.
2. Don’t drown management in tech-speak communication.
“The X134 part fixes everything.” What? Bridge the communication gap between tech and real person talk. Talk in a way everyone understands. If the part X134 makes the projector brighter, say, “We have a solution that will cause the dim screen to be brighter.” Seems simple, but it’s hard for a technician or technical leader to speak in this fashion.
3. Understand the big picture.
The big picture is the heart of the Church as well as the agenda and vision of the Church. If you’re not supporting that agenda, then you’re going to struggle in presenting your idea and have a hard time getting approval. Understanding the heart, vision and agenda of the Church will help you make quick, efficient decisions and build trust.
4. Build trust.
Be a person of your word. Build trust with every team. This doesn’t mean you have to agree all the time, but it does mean everyone knows you’ll do what you say and will carry out any decision to the best of your ability. Before a decision is made, objecting and presenting your side is good. After, you must drop those objections and carrying out the decision. Objecting while carrying out the decision deteriorates trust.
5. Track decisions.
Facts presented in a way that honors your boss can be very helpful for future decisions. I have learned over the years that big money decisions, major course changes and significant technical changes typically don’t get approved on the first try. I track the issues and report them each time I make my presentation. After a while those changes typically get approved, especially if long term costs are seen. Costs could be money and/or stress impact. Remember, budgets take time, so present the facts and costs and pursue your idea becoming budgeted. If you’re told “no”, track the results and use those facts for the next presentation.
No matter what you do, it’s not a good idea to scream “Boom Shakalaka, I’m right, happy dance time!”