ADVANCE: Take Your Next Step with Mike Acker

Ep 6 | Speak and Lead Team Members [ Season 2 ]

March 14, 2022 Mike Acker Season 2 Episode 6
ADVANCE: Take Your Next Step with Mike Acker
Ep 6 | Speak and Lead Team Members [ Season 2 ]
Show Notes

What is the most effective way to communicate with your direct reports? Have you considered guiding them with questions, helping them figure out solutions and improvement ways by themselves, or do you still follow the traditional lead-with-answers methodology?

In this episode, Mike discusses why the former method is the most effective in leading your team with confidence while naturally instilling in them qualities of accountability and responsibility. You’ll learn the three Ps to asking questions to your direct reports and the four Cs to parenting levels and see how the two combine in effective leadership.

Learn to become a natural leader to your direct reports in this episode. Tune in now!


What must you keep in mind when speaking to direct reports?


Lead them through questions. You don’t have to tell your direct reports what to do because they can often figure it out themselves; maybe sometimes, you’ve to direct them towards it. The 3 Ps to asking questions helps include:


Psychology: When you’re being asked questions, your brain tries to get ready to respond to them. That means, even if the brain were in a passive state until then, it would jump to being active when asked questions.


Problem: Answering someone’s questions requires humility and time. Initially, a sense of pride may come over, which is a problem, but as humility gradually replaces your problem of pride, you’ll realize how beneficial it is to lead them through questions.

Process: Figure out how you must ask questions. When done properly, asking questions is a highly effective way of leading.

How do you lead people through questions the right way?

Go slow: If you’ve been the answer-teller all this while, it might take time for your people to adjust to this new attitude. Implement the practice slowly so that everyone is comfortable with the changes.

Go methodological: Have a flow of questions. Go from one point to the next. The four Cs of parenting: Commander, Coach, Counselor, Consultant, explain what the different parenting levels teach you about work and leadership.
What are the four Cs of parenting?

Commander: This is the stage where you're telling your children what to do. You're the boss in charge of their actions, helping them understand right and wrong.

Coach: After early middle school, your role with your child becomes that of a coach. You help them see the pros and cons, weigh the good and bad, and help them understand the implications of different choices. In this stage, you're helping them manage the outcome.

Counselor: As kids get older, you won't weigh the pros and cons of a situation with them. You help them process what they think is a good idea.

Consultant: The last stage is that of a consultant. This comes at the point where your kids have moved out of the house and ask your opinion about situations. They might take it or leave it, but your role as a consultant is to be a good advisor to them.


“If your speaking is higher, then people will assume that your leadership is equally as high. But if your speaking is lower, and even though you're a great leader able to get things done, then people will assume that your leadership is much lower.”

“When you ask a question, instead of just telling them what to do, start putting it back on them and leading them through a series of questions… What happens (then) is they start having to take ownership of the issue.”