Conscious Communicator Tip #4 – Always Presume Good Intent (300 words or less)

Conscious communicators become “champion” power communicators when they adopt certain beliefs about how they should communicate. Over the next three weeks you will learn the top 3 beliefs that make the difference in your ability to exert positive influence.

The first of these 3 beliefs is, Presume Good Intent.

Imagine how many times someone initiates a conversation and you immediately put a wall up anticipating the individual has an ulterior motive or agenda behind their communication. You are presuming negative, maybe even, manipulative intent.

Often, this becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy. It causes you to recognize only behaviors that reinforce your beliefs and you delete any possible behavior not be consistent with your beliefs.

As a leader, this is not conducive to generating effective results with others. The only approach for a leader is to presume good intent.

If you have ‘history’ with an individual, you absolutely have a right to be cynical. Yet, as a leader it is incumbent upon you to take each situation as it comes and realize that the 
past does not necessarily equal the future.

Presuming positive intent leads you to communicate with an open mind, allowing for a discussion of possibilities and opportunities.

If you have significant history with this individual, you can always use President Ronald Reagan’s Cold War approach of “trust and verify.”

Additionally, realize that all human beings only do things for positive intent, and even though that positive intent may be extremely selfish and self-serving, it still comes with that foundation, and we all have that right.

As a leader it is our responsibility to help the individual see how their approach is counter to their best interests, then influence their communication style.

This approach will allow you to reinforce your belief and presume good intent” every time.

skip weisman, transforming leadership and workplace communication to deliver champion level results