You Never Bring out Someone’s Best by Making Them Feel Inadequate

You never bring out someone’s best by making them feel inadequate.

You may not mean to intimidate others but you probably do.

Intimidated people:

  1. Comply, but don’t bring their best.
  2. Speak YOUR mind, not theirs. They figure out what you want to hear and say it.
  3. Pretend they respect you.

You intimidate others if they won’t speak up.

The person with power is responsible to minimize intimidation.

5 Ways to lead more and intimidate less:

#1. Approve of people.

There’s a difference between approving of others and disagreeing with them.

People feel intimidated when they wonder what you think of them. 

Approve of people even when you correct their behavior.

“Failure is an event not a person.” Zig Ziglar

#2. Inquire first. Judge last.

People don’t enjoy feeling judged by your quick brain. Leaders often decide quickly and get bored. “Let’s move on.”

I know a caring leader who gets a blank look on his face when you bring up problems or offer suggestions. He’s kind and open but he unintentionally intimidates people because he seems disinterested.

  1. Ask open questions.
  2. Begin questions with, “I’m interested in … .”
  3. Avoid using ‘but’ when possible. “That’s a good idea, BUT … .”

#3. Meet in their office, not yours.

Your office feels like going to the principal’s office, even if you don’t mean it to feel that way.

#4. Strengthen connection – eliminate distance:

  1. Be prepared when someone meets with you. Don’t say, “I’ll be with you in just a minute.” Making people wait is an expression of power.
  2. Let them see you silence your phone and put it away.
  3. Avoid sitting behind your desk if you must meet in your office.

The trappings of power are tools of intimidation.

#5. Don’t blame others for feeling intimidated. It’s intimidating.

How might leaders lower the intimidation factor?