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Attached is the part  one and two


These discussions have been intense and very thoughtful, and I am tremendously proud to be a part of this ongoing discussion and am honored to work with all of you. You have done some unbelievable work and your effort is evident, and I’m going to tell you why.

The first half of the book in general sets the stage for Part 3 and ultimately Part 4. In the first part of the book, we identified some common themes resulting from our discussion on avoiding outward criticism/condemnation/complaining, affirming the good in others, and connecting to core desires. In Part 2, we dug a little deeper to explore how these themes connected to our core values based on our observations. After all of this, your thoughtful posts and engaging comments, I was able to take the information you provided as a class and somehow boil it down to one point of significance.

The most notable theme that emerged from our Part 2 discussions was simply this: taking the opportunity to connect with others and show interest in other peoples’ lives is paramount in the communication process. 

There are many ways to go about this, and Part 3 presents 10 chapters on techniques that support earning and building the trust of others. As we’ve boiled down our work from Part 1 and Part 2 and identified that taking the opportunity to connect with others and show interest in other peoples’ lives is paramount in the communication process, let’s do some work on how best we can support our goals of becoming better communicators and working toward becoming agents of change and pinnacles of leadership (Part 4). 

If the theme we’ve identified as a class is correct (in the importance of connecting with others on a truly human, personal level in a way that demonstrates a genuine, believable interest in what they are doing or what they value), then we all have a tremendous opportunity to improve ourselves a little at a time. Ultimately, dare I say it, can we leave everyone we meet a little better than before and every situation we encounter a little better because we could find the value in the others after finding the value in ourselves?

Discussion Assignment:

There are 10 chapters presented in Part 3 of HTWF. All 10 chapters are critically important to read, understand, and ultimately integrate in our lives. For purposes of this discussion, I’d like you to pull out the three chapters that spoke to you the most in terms of the following:

1. Based on our discussions in Part 1 and Part 2, identify which chapters stood out and why these three chapters in Part 3 have significance to you? (Ex: Chapter 8 stood out to me as soon as I read the following: “you are capable of doing the right, honorable, true thing.” It’s amazing that a simple message like this could convey to others that you believe in them, or even that I believe in myself, to work toward a mutual goal of making a difference.)

2. In our previous discussions, we have given lots of examples of situations in which our core values have been either supported or violated in communicating with others, both in person and online. Give “in-real-life” examples of how you have seen others use these techniques in the three chapters you selected, or alternatively, situations in which these techniques could have been applied and maybe had a different result.

3. We all have weak areas that require some personal development. That said, identify 2 or 3 of your weak areas that merit some personal development and identify an associated goal. In the greater context of all of Part 3, how do you plan to integrate these techniques into your “weak” areas? Do you have a tendency to not admit when you’re wrong? Do you easily dismiss others’ opinions? Is it hard for you to put yourself in someone else’s shoes? As an example of what I am looking for, I’ll share one of my weak areas with you and what would be an appropriate response to the question:

As an example of a “weak” area, I have a tendency to use non-verbal communication, in particular in meetings to show my displeasure (eye-rolling, etc) with something I don’t agree with on some level (dismissing others’ opinions, really). I’ve been aware that I do it, but in the last year, I have made a concerted effort to stop it. The reason is this: the message I’m portraying to my colleagues is one of dissonance, and outwardly indicates that I’m not willing to find common ground to work toward a solution. 

After reading Chapter 5, “Access Affinity,” it was much easier for me to go into meetings with a new perspective of, “if I want my colleagues to like me and respect what I have to say, I have to knock it off and pay attention to find some commonality to get to “yes” faster, and ultimately get what I want out of it.” My goal is to not be viewed as difficult to work with, and be someone who can find the value in what someone else is trying to say and integrate that value in my interactions. It is still VERY hard for me to contain myself, but I am much more aware of it and the damage I can do if I don’t control it. It gets easier every day, but that is part of my journey too. 

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