You know the feeling evoked when someone shares too much information (TMI) with you?

It is generally awkward and can create all kinds of reactions like the one above from the TV show Friends. While this is usually something that gets laughed off in personal interactions, something that doesn’t get laughed off is what happens when people try to add too much value as a leader.

The energy of the person you are talking to goes down as does their commitment.


Adding Too Much Value

While the intention is often good, the impact may be disengaging. To learn more about this common challenge leaders face, please check out this 3-minute video from one of my favorite leadership experts, Marshall Goldsmith.

Knowing is Not Enough

So, you know about this potential trap, but how are you going to avoid it? Please take a few minutes to consider when you may be tempted to add more value to an interpersonal interaction and how you plan to interupt yourself.

True Confession – The reason I’m sharing this with you is I fell into this trap this week after I had just shared this with one of my clients. (So I know about it). Then, a few days later, I caught myself doing it. Ugh. I witnessed the drop in energy first hand. While I caught myself, the damage was already done. I want to foster commitment not compliance as a leader. Before I respond, I’m going to stop, breathe and consider the impact. (Basically slow down and listen more.)

“We spend a lot of time teaching leaders what to do. We don’t spend enough time teaching leaders what to stop. Half the leaders I have met don’t need to learn what to do. They need to learn what to stop.”
Marshall Goldsmith, What Got You Here Won’t Get You There: How Successful People Become Even More Successful

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