How to Overcome Resistance to Requests

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Often the best-laid strategies of consultants come to a grinding halt at the people level. Amanda Setili shares a post that offers a few practical steps you can take to encourage others to take action.

The biggest obstacle to your progress is often something you can’t see, hear or even name. It is not something tangible and obvious. The biggest obstacle is… a quiet unwillingness—perhaps even reluctance—to do the things that you need someone to do.

You ask Engineering to create a better system for collecting payments from customers, and nine months in a row they have told you to wait “just one more month.”

The Sales team tells you (a Product Manager) that they will start selling your product at meetings with prospective clients, but week after week they come back from sales calls and say they ran out of time before bringing it up.

The reasons why this happens vary widely, but the essence of getting someone to do what you want basically comes down to three things:

 1.) Do they have the ability to do what you want?

You can’t expect a media buyer to audit financial results, and you can’t merely ask someone to double their performance. Pure and simple, the other person may lack the capability to do as you wish, and there are times when this could be too embarrassing to admit.

The first step is always to do a reality check to determine if someone has the skill, experience and knowledge to do what you wish.

If you determine they lack the skill, you have several options. You might, for example, help the person learn a new skill or you could turn to a different person or group.

Key points include:

  • Belief in assessment
  • Cost value
  • Reasonable risk

Read the full article, When Others Won’t Do… What You Need Them To Do, on LinkedIn.