Awareness is where growth starts

Awareness problems exist in leadership, management, sales, business development, and virtually every interaction between two or more individuals.
Blindfolded businessman

Have you ever met the person who says, “I am a great listener,” then doesn’t stop talking for the next 20 minutes as they proceed to tell you how great of a listener they are? Likely you have, and internally thought this person has no clue. There seems to be an abundance of these people in the world today. Not just when it comes to listening, but also in hundreds of different areas where the individual has an awareness issue.

Billions of dollars a year are spent by business leaders trying to fix things like this in the traditional training and development industry. However, they are usually disappointed with the outcome because they missed the critical first step in how we GROW as humans – and especially as adult humans. That step is awareness. Until an individual is aware of something, he or she can’t change or even be open to change.

Last year a local business owner brought us in because they were extremely frustrated with their team’s customer service. They were also frustrated by how much they had already worked on it and how much they had spent with another training organization. Leadership knew there was an issue and deserved credit for attempting to address it. However, when they called in this other, well-known organization to help them build a better service team, they missed this critical first step of awareness. This was incredibly obvious when our team researched with them to understand better what the situation was.

The people in this organization already believed they were providing outstanding customer service. By the standards they had for service, this was very understandable. However, the clients and the owners had a different service-level expectation.

Can you see the disconnect and why this would be an issue?

When the other organization delivered the training, the team was not aware of the disconnect; thus, they did not take the training seriously. They were not AWARE the leadership team completely wasted time and money!

Unfortunately, we see this in almost every client we work with who has been disappointed with efforts to fix issues in their organization.
It would be nice if the situation were an anomaly or only pertained to customer service. However, that is far from reality. It is prevalent in leadership, management, sales, business development, and virtually every interaction between two (or more) individuals – both professionally and personally.

The process will sound easy. However, it is far from that when you truly dig in and go to work. Once awareness exists, the growth process can begin. If, or when, an individual becomes aware that things they say, don’t say, do, don’t do, how they act, etc. are holding them back, they are open to change and growth. This openness leads to greater success.

So, let me ask – what things do you need to be more aware of? How are these things limiting your growth and your greater success? Some of you have answers to these questions and own the responsibility to do something about it. Others of you are not able to answer these questions. If you fall into this group and seek growth or greater success, you should seek help from professionals who can help you identify the gaps you may not be aware of that are holding you back.

When (if) you do, the pathway to the success you seek becomes much easier to understand and follow.

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About Mike Crandall

Mike Crandall lives in Edmond, Oklahoma. He is a Consultant, Coach, Trainer, Speaker, and Author focused on the Subconscious Psychology of Human Interaction and Motivation. His firm specializes in Sales, Management, and Leadership Development for Proactive Business Growth. Mike is based in Oklahoma and serves Visionary Clients across the United States. He can be reached at Mike.Crandall@Sandler.com or at (405) 844-1700.