- Know how to getting out of a career rut and overcome turf wars, silos, gossip, and information hoarding
- Learn how to make your colleagues your fans not your competitor
- Know the difference between competence and confidence in the workplace
- Get Nancy’s Free ebooks: The Dealing with Your Boss, Dealing with a Peer, or Dealing with Your Team: www.nancyhalpern.com
Nancy Halpern is a nationally recognized leadership consultant and pioneer in the field of talent development who diagnoses political dysfunction in organizations.
Leveraging thought leadership and intellectual capital from over twenty years of client engagements, Nancy helps companies find solutions to the most intractable of problems office politics. With a proprietary model based on the core concepts of Political IQ, Nancy assesses organizations, teams, and individuals to pinpoint the sources and causes of workplace dysfunction.
In this episode, Nancy shares wisdom learned through coaching top executives and emphasizes the aspects of handling workplace politics.
Check out these episode highlights:
- 02:39 – Nancy’s ideal client: Private companies of 500-2000 employees
- 03:14 – Problem she helps solve: workplace politics that derailed careers and teams from meeting their business objectives
- 04:25 – Typical symptoms that clients do before reaching out to Nancy: “Turf wars, silos, gossip, and information hoarding.”
- 04:56 – Common mistakes people make when trying to solve that problem: Most teams are not functioning teams because teams are a group of people that share a common objective for which they’re all accountable for, which means it shows up in their incentive systems and their reviews. But nobody does the hard work of figuring out what that is and making sure that’s your primary team.
- 06:16 – Nancy’s Valuable Free Action (VFA): Start quite assuming that the other person’s right, then go from there. Because if the other person’s resistant, guess what, they think they’re right too.
- 07:12 – Nancy’s Valuable Free Resource(VFR): nancyhalpern.com
- 07:54 – Q:Can political intelligence be taught? A: “It can be taught if you stop denying it exists.”
Tweetable Takeaways from this Episode:“When something goes south, you don't want to be the one holding the bag so you're going to find (someone to pass) half that bag along.” -@nhalpern Click To Tweet “Start assuming that the other person's right, then go from there.If you begin from a different point of view, the logic will follow. And you'll be able to find a way to be more seamlessly woven together.” -@nhalpern Click To Tweet
(Note, this was transcribed using a transcription software and may not reflect the exact words used in the podcast)
Tom Poland: Hello everyone and a very warm welcome to another edition of Marketing The Invisible. My name’s Tom Poland Beaming out to from on the sand as usual next to the waves, in a little Castaways Beach, Queensland Australia joined today by Nancy Halpern.
Nancy, good day and where are you hanging out?
Nancy Halpern: I’m hanging out in New York City where I usually hang out.
Tom Poland: NYC, the Big Apple, the city that never sleeps. Nancy appropriately, therefore, is a nationally recognized leadership consultant and pioneer in the field of talent development. And this is where it gets interesting, her diagnosis of political dysfunction in organizations. That is very clever Nancy. Folks it gets even more interesting, Nancy is leveraging thought leadership and intellectual capital from over 20 years of client engagements as a consultant. Do you do training as well Nancy or was it primarily consulting?
Nancy Halpern: I did do training in the past. Now I tend to focus more on consulting.
Tom Poland: And I imagine you either get dragged into or offer executive coaching as well.
Nancy Halpern: Yes, you know when you have your own shop, you’re going to take a lot of different types of businesses because one thing can lead to the other. So, if the clients a good one you don’t want to say no.
Tom Poland: Well, yeah. Our bluff often found that you know in consulting engagements or training indications particular were with, you know, an exec will tap you on the shoulder and say, “Can you do some little coaching with me?” Or vice versa, you do some coaching with the executive and, “Can you train this with my group?” So, I just wondered. Thank you for confirming my deepest suspicions.
Tom Poland: Nancy helps companies find solutions to the most intractable of problems which is office politics. She has created a proprietary model, which always excites me, based on the core concepts of…drumroll, “political IQ”. And uses that to assess organizations, teams, and individuals to pinpoint the sources and causes of workplace dysfunction. And no doubt, remove them. So, Nancy, drumroll…another drum roll, two and one interviews. Wow. The subject is “Workplace Politics and Making Sure They Don’t Do You In”. And Nancy’s going to share with you folks how we can make sure that those workplace politics don’t do you in, in just seven minutes. So, Nancy, our time starts now. Question number one, who is your ideal client?
Nancy Halpern: Private companies of five hundred to two thousand employees.
Tom Poland: Wow. We’ve got six minutes 50 seconds left, therefore. Number two, what is the problem you solve?
Nancy Halpern: Workplace politics that derailed careers and teams from meeting their business objectives.
Tom Poland: This is not your first interview is it? Question number three. Describe please the typical, six and a half minutes left. We’re going to be through this in 90 seconds of this right? What are the typical symptoms that people experience with that problem?
Nancy Halpern: Turf wars, silos, gossip, and information hoarding.
Tom Poland: Right. So, I’m not letting you get away with those answers. Start in turf wars, drill down a little, please. What are we talking about? Marketing vs sales or…
Nancy Halpern: Pick one; IT, Product Development, Marketing, Sales…
Tom Poland: All having a go at each other.
Nancy Halpern: We all have and go at each other because they want to protect their function. And my definition of politics is when people compete for limited resources. And that’s in every business of any size that I’ve ever met. So that resources headcount, managers attention, budget, visibility, promotional visibility. And so, you end up with you know, people want…there’s only a limited pie and most people want more than one tiny piece.
Tom Poland: And blame shifting presumably from one turf to the other.
Nancy Halpern: It’s so common especially on teams. When something goes south, you don’t want to be the one holding the bag so you’re going to find (someone to pass) half that bag along.
Tom Poland: Okay so. We’re not going to drill down the silos because I think everyone knows what, basically what silos are. But, what’s the third one you mentioned?
Nancy Halpern: I mentioned gossip and information hoarding.
Tom Poland: Information holding, well. Okay. So, question number four, there’s going to be some execs listening to this hopefully who are going, “Yep, that’s us”. And when they reflect on the things they’ve tried to stop this, they will have tried some stuff maybe like the “Come to Jesus Meetings” and beating people over the head. What is other…what sort of other common mistakes would an executive made typically who’s tried to solve this problem of turf wars, silos, gossip, and hoarding information?
Nancy Halpern: Well let’s say it’s about their team. Typically, most teams are not teams, they’re workgroups. Because teams are a group of people that share a common objective for which they’re all accountable for, which means it shows up in their incentive systems and their reviews. But nobody does the hard work of figuring out what that is and making sure that’s your primary team. The other things I see managers do, or at any level, they get overly emotional versus reactive which means they get more directive. Which people feel is just sort of blah, blah, blah, blah, blah. And people fail to create strategic alliances, an early buy-in. So that also happens, they just end up debating.
Tom Poland: Well that’s absolute gold in there, I mean, just starting with workgroups versus teams’ communal sense of alignment. There’s a book or two on that alone. Folks, I don’t know if you listen good to that answer, but if you didn’t, you’ve got to go back and replay that answer. There’s absolute gold in there. Nancy, thank you.
Question number five, three and a half minutes left and three questions left. Question number five, is what is one valuable free action that an audience member can take that…that’s going to help…that’s going to take him a step in the right direction to solving this problem? Is not going to be the whole solution but it’s “A” step at least.
Nancy Halpern: Start assuming that the other person’s right, then go from there. Because if the other person’s resistant, guess what, they think they’re right too. And you don’t want it to be a war of attrition who wears each other down. If you begin from a different point of view, the logic will follow. And you’ll be able to find a way to be more seamlessly woven together.
Tom Poland: Start from the assumption that the other per… that’s if it’s even possible that someone else who has a different opinion may be right. Well, yes, it is possible.
Nancy Halpern: We lie to ourselves all the time. Just lie to yourself a moment that the other person is right.
Tom Poland: But you might be surprised that they are, there’s a little truth in what they’re saying. Thank you. Two and a half minutes left. We are rocking and rolling.
Nancy Halpern: New York minute baby.
Tom Poland: We don’t mess around in New York. Time is money. Let’s hustle. Question number six, what is one valuable free resource that you can direct people to that will further help them with this problem?
Nancy Halpern: nancyhalpern.com. There are three free e-books you can download. The dealing with your boss, dealing with a peer, or dealing with your team.
Tom Poland: Brilliant. And two minutes left. Question number seven is, what is the one question I should have asked you but didn’t.
Nancy Halpern: Can political intelligence be taught?
Tom Poland: And we’ve got a whopping one minute 56 seconds left. Would you give us the answer, please? Would you give us the answer, please? I think political intelligence probably can be taught, otherwise…
Nancy Halpern: Well, why am I here?
Tom Poland: Exactly. Well, let’s assume it can. But can you elaborate, how is it taught? What has to change in order for that political intelligence to be embedded in the culture of an organization?
Nancy Halpern: I think people are always going to be political. So, the first thing is I think to rip off the Band-Aid that is a dirty word that we should never talk about because we all know it’s there. So, it can be taught if you stop denying it exists. And then if you think about it in service to the business. It’s one thing to be political at someone else’s expense, that’s called conquest. It’s another thing to think about political sort of like, I don’t know maybe this is not the best example, but the European Union, that’s a series of alliances. And how can you influence others from your point of view? How can you generate goodwill? How can you read the chessboard? Those are powers of actual strategy. And so, if you can learn to be more strategic versus reactive, then yeah, I think you can learn.
Tom Poland: Absolutely brilliant. Nancy thank you so much for your time.
Nancy Halpern: ] My pleasure.
Tom Poland: Thanks for checking out our marketing the invisible podcast if you like what we’re doing here please head over to iTunes to subscribe, rate us, and leave us a review. It’s very much appreciated. And if you want to generate five fresh leads in just five hours then check out www.fivehourchallenge.com.