Wednesday, September 09, 2009

Lessons from Kathryn:
Uncommon Resources for uncommonly good leaders

I'm not going to let another week get away from me before I post the next "Lessons from Kathryn".  [Insert applause here.] 

 So tonight I was thinking, "Kathryn is the kind of person that I could just write the same "Likeability Factor" blog about all the time.  It could just be our running blog each week sharing again how likeable she is."  I know, I know...you are thinking, what a total suck up --that I'm looking for brownie points.  Sorry, [eeeennnt, wrong answer].  I work hard and don't really need extra credit.  I'm just stating truth by saying she's got the likeability factor in overdrive.  But I'm not going to sit here and write that same post all over again using different words. 

The reason I bring that up is because as usual in this week's meeting she found out right up front what's going on with me, and what I wanted to talk about.  Sometimes I really wonder if she's a regional coach manager or a therapist.  :)  Actually this week she let me preach.  Yep.  Seriously. 

She said, "what's this fasting thing you're doing?  What is that about?" 

 I said, "I'm not sure I should get into the whole thing, I mean I really don't want to be preachy here..."

And she says, "that's okay, be preachyYou're a preacher!"

Since I was pretty fired up from fasting all day and praying during 95% of my day yesterday, I was more than happy to talk about what the Bible says about fasting, and also what it's done for me personally.  Now I ask you, how many managers are going to not only listen to a sermon, but ask for one?    Yeah, that's unique all right.  Most of them are afraid you're going to drop the J-bomb at any time.  lol  (I've learned God isn't threatening to most people in the world, it's Jesus they get freaked out about.  He's the lightning rod.  Another blog post for another day.)

Moving on we talked about the best resource for solving conflict in the workplace.  Right now we don't have any, however a friend of mine in management with another organization had asked me for a resource and I went straight to Kathryn since that is honestly her expertise.    And she recommended something rather unorthodox for conflict management in the workplace...a book on marriage!

It’s called The Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work: A Practical Guide from the Country's Foremost Relationship Expert by John Gottman.   Here's what she said about it:  "A lot of the principles are the same for home and work: softened start-up, bid repair, the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse, 5:1 ratio of positive to negative interactions, so on, so on… You’ll just have to ignore the questionnaires and read the meat of the information. It’s also good for marriages – I’ve recommended it to more than one couple. In that case, the quizzes become very important." 

I not only immediately recommended the book to my friend, but I clicked on to Amazon and ordered the book for myself.  I'm hoping it will enrich my conflict management skills in the church and in my  own marriage.  Kathryn says she uses the principles in the book to assist in keeping her relationship with her boyfriend running smooth.  (It's a fallacy that those of us who communicate for a living or coach people have it all under control in the personal araes of our lives. We struggle like anyone else and have to keep investing and fine tuning.) 

Two things I learned yesterday - number one, Kathryn broadens her horizons when it comes to gathering resources for leading and often uses methods that may not be the norm.  Come to think of it, isn't that what most great leaders who have ever really accomplished anything in the world do? 

Second, she went the extra mile and offered my friend one hour of coaching, for free. 

My friend has basically just won the lottery.
 

1 comment:

Ruth, PA said...

Wow Deanna!

What wisdom! Thank you for sharing your wisdom as well as Kathryn's! Life is all about learning and sharing the wisdom so others may learn. We've never arrived...and when we think we have, that's when we get knocked down a peg or two! LOL