I began the task of becoming “relational” much to my own chagrin. I am by nature an introvert in an extroverted environment, so any success in my job(s) is dependent on the relational component. As Kem starts out by clueing us to in chapter 15, titled “Getting from Here to There,” conversations are a necessary part of any job, whether your job is in communications or not. When she states “don’t expect to see organizational or relational change anytime soon” if you don’t allow the time in your schedule for conversations, she’s not exaggerating! I cannot overstate the changes I’ve seen in my job over the last year when I have made time and saved up the energy to invest in relationships. A short conversation in the hall, the well placed encouragement that shows you pay attention, showing interest in the work and projects of others, all work together to build those relationships that are so necessary to the success of your work.
I picked up this book at a conference of Kem’s that I attended. At the time, communicating was the last thing on my mind. I was in a job that I loved, paving new roads for organization within the systems of weekend programming. God definitely has a sense of humor! I am now the communications director and it’s an interesting ride. I have found that for the time I spend pouring into relationships, the benefits are greater than I ever imagine. We “Lead Change” (pg 230) through those relationships. And we make change by starting (pg 232) one step, one task, one goal at a time. The “job” of communicating can be huge; the changes needed vast, but I submit to you that it all happens by putting one foot in front of the other. Invest in one relationship a day… or start with one a week. Set a goal you can handle and ramp it up from there.
Questions to respond to:
1. Who are the top 5 people you need to build relationships with?
2. What steps will you take to building these relationships or how do you pay more attention to these relationships?