Okay, I confess. I watched the Prince Harry and Meghan Markle interview. Judge me all you want. I can take it. But something Meghan said during her conversation with Oprah really struck a chord with me. It seems so obvious now, but I was genuinely surprised when she spoke about how things looked from the outside compared to what was really going on behind closed doors. When Oprah seemed shocked at how unhappy Meghan had been, Meghan’s response was that her job was to put on a smile, look beautiful, and perform for the public.
This made me reflect on some of the conversations I’ve had with business owners over these last few very difficult months of the pandemic.
Things may have appeared okay on the outside, but it was what was not being said that truly mattered.
- One member worried if the group really was the right fit for her business. But what she was really asking was could she afford to continue, given that she had recently decided to get a divorce and was now more worried than ever about her economic stability.
- Another member complained about an employee who made a comment about having to do too many menial tasks, distracting her from her real work. What this member was really wondering was whether or not this employee was committed to her business or if she might quit to go full time at another company.
- A third member offered excuse after excuse as to why she hadn’t made much progress on her prospecting for new clients. What she wasn’t saying was that the voice in her head was talking her out of making those calls because she was too afraid of the potential rejection.
You may be noticing a similar thing with your team members or clients, or even in your own life.
It is important to listen to what is not being said.
Too often we take things at face value without taking the time to dig a little deeper.