When leaders want the culture to change or to be a certain way, they often try to convince their teams to adopt a new way of being and behaving. Often, their communication style resembles a pitch rather than a conversation or dialogue. Our guest this week, Chris Westfall, says that it’s time to stop pitching and start connecting.
Chris Westfall is the author of Leadership Language: Using Authentic Communication to Drive Results and a consultant to financial leaders and Fortune 100 companies. He’s helped entrepreneurs launch a broad array of businesses and successfully rebranded products and services around the globe. Working with thousands of business leaders, he’s helped launch over 50 companies, while raising over $100 million – and counting – in investment capital.
He’s coached teams to victory in the Intel Global Capital Conference, the Harvard Executive MBA Pitch Competition, and the Rice Business Plan Competition 2016 (the largest and most lucrative pitch competition in the world).
In this interview, Chris and I discuss:
- What a truly effective pitch looks like
- The role our assumptions and beliefs play in our ability to lead change
- How to deal with our internal dialogue
- How to challenge collective assumptions and beliefs
- The importance of creating an environment of psychological safety to enable people to engage in new behaviors
- How creativity fuels results and engagement
- Characteristics of an environment that supports innovation
- An exercise that can help you and your team view things from the perspective of someone who will be impacted by your decisions
- Authenticity and the role it plays in leading others
- The importance of “listening to discover” in creating a culture of performance
Listen to the interview in the player below or on iTunes. If you like what you hear, please leave a review, and it may be featured on a future episode.