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  • Jerry Phillips

Communication exists in the shadow of words, not in the words themselves

I read a quote from Rajneesh recently. He was an Indian godman, mystic, and founder of the Rajneesh movement. During his lifetime, he was viewed as a controversial new religious movement leader and mystic. Key word is controversial. However, just because someone is controversial, it doesn’t mean there isn’t some good that comes from their thoughts and words. The quote was:

“Communication exists in the shadow of words, not in the words themselves. It is not what is said, but what is communicated that matters.”

There are several ways to interpret the meaning of the quote. I am favoring a view that true communication comes from the non-verbal as well as the verbal. It is not just the words, but the actions that we take that truly has impact and meaning.

As a leader of a business or group, your words have meaning, but true communication comes from how you act, what you do, how you treat your team. You can share what you believe is a clear vision, but have the team interpret it much differently. You can share what you believe the values are, but if you don’t live them yourself, no one else does either. If you don’t trust your team, they will not trust you.

Through the years of working in leadership roles, I’ve struggled with how companies hire agencies to represent their products and services to the customer, but the performance never reaches its true potential. Neither the agency nor the company trusts each other. On a call last week, a friend of mine who is an outstanding CEO of a manufacturer, made the comment that the relationship with agencies is like a married couple who stay together because of the kids. The company hiring the agency feels they must have leverage to control them. The agency constantly feels like the company will pull the line or hire a direct team and they will need to start over. The arm’s length relationship creates issues due to a lack of communication. Data isn’t shared and opportunities missed.

Our Sales Science solution addresses two challenges. It creates a strong, trusting relationship between sales partners that allows you to use data much more effectively. This drives a 4X performance improvement in revenue growth. The second challenge it solves is a structure that allows for strong communication of your strategy on a timely and consistent basis.

Building trust and communicating clearly can bring light to the shadows of words. It must be a structured, rigorous process. We can help.

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