Have you ever heard these myths about becoming a better communicator? Myth #1: Good communication is all about being a smooth talker. Myth #2: Communication skills are something you’re either born with or without. Myth #3: The more you talk, the better communicator you are. In this episode, our guest Michelle Gladieux will reveal the truth behind these myths and share strategies to unleash better communication through pro moves.
“In hiding from risk, we don’t stand up. We don’t use our voice, we don’t use the power of our pen to communicate or through email when we could and we could advocate perhaps for ourselves or others’ ideas.” – Michelle Gladieux
Michelle Gladieux joins us to share valuable insights on how to uplevel your personal and professional communication skills. The President of Gladieux Consulting, Michelle is a seasoned communication specialist and author of the book, Communicate with Courage: Taking Risks to Overcome the Four Hidden Challenges. Her strategic intuition in business psychology blends seamlessly into her work, leading her to create the concept of ‘pro moves’ that aims to empower stronger communicators. Whether she is writing engaging birthday cards, crafting thoughtful emails, or actively facilitating strategic planning with her impressive client roster, Michelle’s commitment to harnessing the power of effective communication is truly remarkable.
In this episode, you will be able to:
- Acknowledge the crucial role effective communication takes up in both personal and professional circles.
- Unearth hidden barriers which might be affecting your communication efficiency and delivery.
- Learn pro-level strategies to transform you into a master communicator.
- Recognize the importance of self-talk and introspection in enhancing communication skills.
- Value the ongoing learning process as the stepping stone to improved communication.
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00:00:00 – Gloria Grace Rand
Namaste. I am Gloria Grace, the Light Messenger and creator of The L.O.V.E. Method, and women entrepreneurs hire me to clear the inner blocks, keeping you stuck so you can put yourself first for a change and live the life you want now. And I am so delighted to be with you to bring you an awesome guest. I know. Or at least I’m sure she’s going to be awesome because I’ve already learned about her and had a chance to talk about her. But she has written an excellent book called Communicate with Courage -Taking Risks to Overcome the Four Hidden Challenges. And she is the president of Gladieux Consulting, a Midwest boy. I can’t talk today. I apologize. A Midwest based team known for top notch design and presentation of seminars in communication and leadership topics around the U.S. That must be why we’re talking about communication. It’s getting me tongue tied. Very strange. Oh, well, she provides executive coaching and facilitates strategic planning for clients in diverse industries, in governments, nonprofits, and in academia. So without further ado, I want to welcome Michelle Gladieux to live, love, engage.
00:01:18 – Michelle Gladieux
Hello. Thanks for having me, Gloria.
00:01:20 – Gloria Grace Rand
Well, I’m so happy to have you. And despite my tongue tiedness there at the beginning, I decided I could have stopped and started over again. Hey, you know, we’re talking about communicating today, so what the heck, let’s let’s know that sometimes things don’t always come out of our mouths the way we intend. But before we get to talking about your book, which I loved, by the way, I would love to know what got you interested in communication and leadership that you are involved with.
00:01:49 – Michelle Gladieux
Well, I don’t know how anyone can’t be, to be honest, Gloria. I just think it’s the makings. If you get good at communication, it’s the makings of a healthy, happy life. And then with our communication strength and prowess and using pro moves and gaining courage, we can help improve others’ lives as well. So it gives me a reason to get up in the morning. And I know that we’re all making a few thousand decisions, big and small, every day, and so many of those are about communication that I think is a topic that we should all be interested in studying. I don’t know, maybe I’m biased, but I’m definitely always analyzing my email, my texts, my birthday cards I write, my presentations. I just think that the intention, as you do in communication and energy and skill really matters.
00:02:40 – Gloria Grace Rand
Well, were you like this as a kid, too?
00:02:44 – Michelle Gladieux
Like this as a kid? I was a little kid who would go tap the teacher on the shoulder and whisper that what that teacher was trying with the student might not work as well as something else, a different method that they could try for interacting with that student. So I think I was destined for that psychology degree, and then I found organizational psychology in college and thought, oh, my gosh, the marriage of business and the study of human behavior. I’m in.
00:03:12 – Gloria Grace Rand
Yeah, I was always interested in I think I took at least one psychology course when I was in school as well, and I think it was while I was majoring in communications, now that I think about it, because I had originally started as a business administration major, and calculus and economics did not agree with me at the time. So I like that you did that. And we have a few other things that got maybe we’ll get into that.
00:03:35 – Michelle Gladieux
Later, but for now, we have happy and sad in common.
00:03:39 – Gloria Grace Rand
Yeah. And it’s what makes us who we are today. So it’s all good. So let’s get into talking about the book. Actually, I’m going to ask you first, why did you decide to write a book about communication?
00:03:51 – Michelle Gladieux
I had had thousands of executive coaching and training clients and got to know them personally and deeply. And I think through all those deep connections and conversations, I kept seeing over the last 20 years or so a pattern of challenges that seemed to be just kind of peripheral vision. Folks weren’t really able to name them and thus couldn’t work on them. So I wanted to put some of my best strategies for communication on paper from my heart and also illustrate these four hidden challenges that trip us up.
00:04:26 – Gloria Grace Rand
Well, I love how you incorporated not only this excellent advice about how to communicate, but you also weaved in some personal examples as well. But I think my favorite is the pro moves and then the homework. Well, not exactly homework. Yeah, I guess homework at the end of each chapter for people to try. So share with us a little bit about what you mean by well, what you mean by, I guess these four hidden challenges, what they are and how we can overcome them.
00:04:59 – Michelle Gladieux
Sure, there are four, and I guess I would invite the listeners today to just lovingly think through whether any of these obstacles are prohibiting you from getting to your best place, your potential as a communicator. So I see four hidden challenges. They are separate but related, and I’m dealing with one or more of these every day. So I don’t think we ever graduate and completely get rid of one. Once I tackle one, another will raise its head, and I just keep trying to be real with myself about my strengths and limitations and expand my courage as a communicator. Here they are. The first hidden challenge is hiding from risk. And when we’re hiding from risk, we are afraid that we might expose one of our weaknesses. A real or a supposed weakness could be something you believe about yourself as a weakness that is true. Or it could be negative self-talk that’s not factual. But in hiding from risk, we don’t stand up. We don’t use our voice, we don’t use the power of our pen to communicate or through email when we could and we could advocate perhaps for ourselves or others ideas. The second hidden challenge is defining to be right. And when you’re defining to be right, you’re just so darn sure. And you’re probably relying on assumptions quite a bit. Now, you may be very smart, you may be very emotionally intelligent, have a lot of good strengths in that area. But when we are defining to be right, we’re putting too much stock into our assumption. And that doesn’t let others’ ideas come in. And it can get in the way of being an inclusive leader, as I hope we’re all striving to be as communicators. So the third challenge is I call it rationalizing the negative. And you might know it as pessimism, because it is when we shield ourselves from taking chances, maybe the chance to say the hard thing or to address a conflict or negotiate, apologize, ask for help, summoning one’s courage and finding the faith that something positive could happen, even though there are potential negative consequences as well. That’s weighing risk intelligently. And when you stop rationalizing the negative, you start to have faith in positive possibilities, which I think will carry us far as communicators. So that one I like to work with clients on overcoming pessimistic thinking and mindsets, and I like to work on my own mind. I’d always look for the gift.
00:07:24 – Gloria Grace Rand
00:07:25 – Michelle Gladieux
Know that I’m speaking your language here, Gloria.
00:07:32 – Gloria Grace Rand
We’ll get into that in a second. So let’s hear the fourth one too.
00:07:37 – Michelle Gladieux
Okay. The fourth is settling for good enough. And another way to say that would be satisficing. It’s satisfactory. I gave as much as anyone would, or that I thought I could get away with giving. And I’d like to see us instead, I’d like to see us all strive toward better interactions, because then we can earn more rewarding outcomes for ourselves and others. So sometimes what we stop is just as important as, you know, as what we start. And I think that if we stop just getting by, amazing things could happen in our workplaces and relationships. So those are the four hidden challenges that I address in the book. And then I give what I call pro moves.
00:08:15 – Gloria Grace Rand
00:08:16 – Michelle Gladieux
It’s the name of my fantasy football team also. But pro moves makes me think of taking on something that’s a little more challenging that the average bear probably wouldn’t. Most folks walk on by those opportunities. But when you’re engaged in a pro move, you’re trying to operate at your very best as a communicator, and you’re not taking the short way around.
00:08:35 – Gloria Grace Rand
And as you were describing those again, it suddenly hit home to me that in certain relationships I’ve had and personal relationships, I have engaged in that first behavior of the.
Hiding from risk?
Gloria Grace Rand
Hiding, yeah, hiding from risk because the other person was doing the defining to be right too much. And so it felt like I couldn’t win the battle. And so I just surrendered, essentially. Do you find that in your dealings with clients and things like that? That happens where maybe the reason that they’re doing one of these hidden, they’re doing one of these hidden challenges, that’s their modus operandi, that it is because someone else in their life is maybe using a different one. And that’s sort of how this dance comes about.
00:09:29 – Michelle Gladieux
Yeah, they haven’t even maybe found the courage yet, or might not have the words, might not know how to address that conflict about how they’re being treated or how the other’s behavior is impacting them. So I find it useful, of course, to help people find their courage in that. But that’s an individual pursuit. We all have to summon our own courage. We read books and get guides and ask for counselors and coaches and all of that can help. But in the end, end of the day, we have to decide, I am going to stand for this value. And maybe in my relationship it is if you’re speaking, if you were hiding from risk while someone else was defining to be right and so darn sure that they were, then you summon the courage. Ideally, if you want the relationship to improve and you want to stay in the relationship to say, I want to talk about how we interact and what’s working for me and what is hurtful and not working for me, that will cause me to lose trust in you and this relationship. Ideally, it may be at a time when the person or both persons are calm and not already offended and defensive.
00:10:32 – Gloria Grace Rand
00:10:34 – Michelle Gladieux
I love my significant other very much, and we really spar and I can usually figure out what I’m doing wrong after I calm down. And I would say I’m more of the defining to be right person. And I know it’s not a good look. It’s a stubborn look. It’s a, “I don’t want constructive feedback. I’m going to hold that at bay.” But every year that I live, I think I get a little braver and I learn to tame that ego that often drives that. Great question.
00:11:01 – Gloria Grace Rand
And I think sometimes it does when you’re talking about the fact that we have to summon that courage for ourselves. One thing that I’ve found, and I’m just thinking of one example, this was very early when I started my business is that I knew that I needed to speak up to help them because that could overcome my fear. So for instance, I was starting off doing this SEO copywriting, and I met some women coaches and their website couldn’t be found on Google. And at that point I wasn’t even done with the course yet, but I knew enough that could help them. And so I was like, Ughhh. I didn’t even have any clients yet. And I’m like, I don’t know, but it’s like…
00:11:42 – Michelle Gladieux
You found the courage to say, may I offer some feedback?
00:11:47 – Gloria Grace Rand
00:11:49 – Michelle Gladieux
I wrote you succeed. State the intention. I want our relationship to be healthy and close.
00:11:57 – Gloria Grace Rand
Sent an email because I was like, yeah, I want to see them succeed. I didn’t want them to be they were too good.
00:12:06 – Michelle Gladieux
Were they open to your feedback, Gloria?
00:12:08 – Gloria Grace Rand
Oh, yeah. They were relieved. They were so happy because they had just had this website created and it wasn’t making them any money. So they became one of the women became my biggest cheerleader. And she was always referring, yeah.
00:12:21 – Michelle Gladieux
I want to make a point there. Even if they had said, what do you know? We’re not interested. Keep your opinions to yourself, it was still a win for you because you summoned the courage to stop hiding from risk. And so sometimes we just have to applaud our own efforts and remember, we’re only 50% of this deal and the other person’s response is outside of our control.
00:12:39 – Gloria Grace Rand
Yeah, absolutely. And as an entrepreneur, I know that I’ve had to learn to be able to accept no, because sometimes it is flat out no, but sometimes it’s not right now or I just don’t have enough money right now, that’s ultimately it. So you have to learn to be able to handle that.
00:12:59 – Michelle Gladieux
Almost certainly being an entrepreneur or trying to grow in any profession means you will face rejection. So we can look at our self-talk and we can think about whether we say kind or unkind things to ourselves when we try and when we fail and when we try and when we succeed. Many of my executive coaching clients as an exercise, they have monthly assignments and I’ll ask them to just document some of the things they’re saying to themselves and then confidentially, we review it in the next month’s meeting. And I’ve seen some pretty hard things said, and often by women to themselves, including one client who said, well, this isn’t business related, but it’s on my mind a lot lately. I’m a bad mom is what I tell myself. And I said, okay, well, let’s look at that in the light, right? Let’s investigate where there’s some truth in that. Are they fed healthy food? She said, well, of course. I said, do they know you love them? Well, of course. Let’s see. Do you help them learn? Do you read? Do you play? Yes. Yes. And I’m not a parenting expert, but I ran through some things that sound like good mom. And I said, well, that sounds like a good mom. How are you bad mom? She said, Well, I say that I tell myself I’m a bad mom because I’ve had a lot of video work calls at night lately when I know they would like my attention and I haven’t been spending as much time as I want to. And I said, can we make the goal about time management so the kids have that whatever you want that to be solid hour with you, no other devices present, and they have your full love and attention during that time ideally? Yes, let’s do that. Okay, good. Can we cross off I’m a bad mom? We crossed it off. And so that’s a good way to test our self-talk messages. Is it true and can you prove it? If you’re saying something negative, and sometimes it is true. I was short with my coworker the other day. That’s not negative self-talk. That’s requiring some courage to apologize. It’s true.
00:14:47 – Gloria Grace Rand
00:14:49 – Michelle Gladieux
I get excited about this stuff. Can I mention one more thing before I forget to our listeners?
00:14:53 – Gloria Grace Rand
Oh, yeah, go ahead.
00:14:55 – Michelle Gladieux
You talked about, we talked a little bit about that third hidden challenge, rationalizing the negative.
00:15:00 – Gloria Grace Rand
00:15:01 – Michelle Gladieux
Here’s what folks do. We tell ourselves, she’s not going to care. He’s not going to listen. Nothing’s going to change. They’re not interested. Back to your point about being an entrepreneur who can handle rejection. Maybe they’re not interested now. Maybe they’ll remember you in six months, or six years, for that matter. Stop with the forecasting of the doomsday most negative possible consequences and balance that with OR it might go well or better than what I’m imagining with a pessimistic mindset. Then you’re prepared for anything.
00:15:31 – Gloria Grace Rand
Yes, absolutely. Yeah. I’ve done some work with a coach and one of the things she likes to say is, and this is just about manifesting good things in your life, this or something better. So to be able to expect that this or something better, why not, right?
00:15:49 – Michelle Gladieux
This or something better.
00:15:50 – Gloria Grace Rand
00:15:52 – Michelle Gladieux
00:15:53 – Gloria Grace Rand
You mentioned these pro moves. I’ll just ask you, is there one that’s your favorite that you think everybody I mean, I know it’s hard they’re probably all your children.
00:16:05 – Michelle Gladieux
It’s hard to pick a favorite because there’s a lot in the book.
00:16:11 – Gloria Grace Rand
Everyone – you need to get the book and until you get the book to give you something to think about.
00:16:16 – Michelle Gladieux
Okay, well, a pro move works like this, for example. You know, your comfort level in communication is to do or say X. But you read a situation to call for Y. So you zig when you used to zag instead of doing X. Now you’re trying y. Maybe you’re going to stand up or stand out, or maybe it’s more you’re going to choose to listen this time and stand down. But it’s not the easy choice for you. So what is it then? That’s what I call a pro move. And here’s I’ll give you two. One of my favorite pro moves to grow as a communicator is to raise your hand more often, to take an opportunity to speak, to do a presentation. Whether it’s in a community group or at work or at church or at school, there’s always an opportunity for humans to engage. And usually there’s a facilitator, teacher, employer, somebody saying, would anyone like to explain or go first or ask a question? This is you. This is the courageous communicator in you get that hand up and say, I have a thought, I have a question. I have some praise for this team. I’d be happy to speak at the meeting. Get going on getting comfortable with your voice – pro move. And it will feel, you might look at your hand and think, why am I doing this? This is uncomfortable. That’s all right. That’s going to get you used to your unique voice that the world loses out on if you don’t exercise it. Then another pro move that might be good for our listeners would be ask somebody you trust at work or in your personal life to tell you one thing they think you do really well as a communicator. And then one thing that they sometimes wish you would do differently. And I put that sometimes in there because, I don’t know, it qualifies the statement makes it a little less pointed or ouchy.
00:18:03 – Gloria Grace Rand
00:18:04 – Michelle Gladieux
Some folks will just shoot it right to you straight. They don’t worry about hurting your feelings, right? They’re more direct. Others might be nervous that you asked because they don’t want to hurt your feelings. So go to someone you trust. And I think if it is fishing. You’re out there, fishing for a compliment and then fish the other way and get some constructive criticism. Do what you want with it. You don’t have to promise to change anything, but you will be a braver communicator now, interacting in that relationship, knowing something they appreciate and something they don’t.
00:18:31 – Gloria Grace Rand
00:18:34 – Michelle Gladieux
Nice if we all did that a little more often.
00:18:36 – Gloria Grace Rand
00:18:38 – Michelle Gladieux
It’s medicine. It’s sort of like I don’t know. I know I should exercise after we conclude our interview today, I hope I can motivate myself to do it. Another important form of exercise is go get constructive feedback.
00:18:51 – Gloria Grace Rand
00:18:53 – Michelle Gladieux
Am I speaking to you? We should both do it.
00:18:57 – Gloria Grace Rand
Yeah. I’m thinking that that would be something good to do, especially with regards to even doing this podcast and the interviews. Because I know sometimes one of my faux pas is not well. I have been endeavoring to listen more before speaking, but sometimes I do get excited and I’ll blurt and then I’ll talk over the guest, which I know is not a good thing to do. And I think I did inadvertently do it at least one time today. That’s one thing that I would like to get better on and it’d be interesting to see. Is it only something that I’m perceiving to be something that maybe I don’t do it as often as I think, or is it something I need to work on?
00:19:36 – Michelle Gladieux
And you could contact a few previous guests and ask for constructive criticism. I should say there’s a form for this. We’ve created a one page tool and it’s free, it’s downloadable, it’s efillable, it’s called the Feedback Challenge and it’s on our website at GladieuxConsulting.com.
00:19:54 – Gloria Grace Rand
I’ll be sure and have that in the show notes.
00:19:56 – Michelle Gladieux
You could use that. And it does say, though, Gloria, that and to our listeners, whoever uses tool, it’s one page. It’s simple, those two questions, but it says that you will then respond. No matter what you hear, you will respond. Thank you. I’ll think about that. And that’s all you have to do. As a matter of fact, you don’t get to disagree. You don’t get to jump in and say, well, that’s not true, because just hold up and go process it. I asked one of my coworkers years ago, a young lady who interning with us and then researching with us, I asked her that same feedback challenge question, and she said some nice things about working with me and for me. And then I said, and what could I do better sometimes, in your opinion? What could I do better? And she said, I wish you would offer more praise. And I was stunned, because if you asked me what’s one thing you’re good at as a communicator and you’re sure, I would say giving praise. So that blew my mind, and I stuck to my own rule and said, thank you. I’ll think about that. Then I hit the road, and I live in Indiana. Went down to Atlanta to present at the Global Cold Chain Institute, where I’ve loved being on faculty. I was on faculty for about 15 years with them, and I was standing up in front of a room of 350 warehousing managers and bragging about her. And I was talking about how she amazed me by coming to a graduate level business class that I was teaching, and she was a guest instructor speaking about teamwork and organizational behavior and how she just knocked it out of the park. And then I stopped, and I bet the whole audience was like, what’s going on with her? But I realized, oh, my gosh, I do offer praise to this person behind her back. I talk about her all the time, very positively. So I don’t know if I’m trying to point. Yes, maybe there’s a little wiggle room. We’re both right. She’s more right. She’s not hearing it directly to her. Three hundred and some warehousing managers heard that and won’t meet her. Know what I mean? So I’m advising our audience and advising you to summon your courage and approach it with an open mind. Maybe something that you get will be a gift.
00:21:58 – Gloria Grace Rand
Such good advice. What really gets you excited about the work that you’re doing?
00:22:05 – Michelle Gladieux
I love to see people writing. I love to see people writing down goals. I’m just coming back from a presentation today to a group of CEOs at a CEO Roundtable, and I’ll just show you quickly. We used a handout that looked like this. So each chapter of the book, there’s a tip there or a pro move. And it really lit me up inside, Gloria, to see folks thinking about the definitions of courage and risk and what a pro move is and hidden challenges and see them writing definitions and then goals for themselves. I can go to sleep, I’ll sleep well tonight knowing that a few fellow humans were inspired today to choose some goals to improve their communication because it’s a lifelong effort and we never graduate.
00:22:50 – Gloria Grace Rand
Yeah, that’s for sure.
00:22:51 – Michelle Gladieux
I mean, I call some seminars. We name them things like mastering interpersonal communication. Mastering customer service. Nobody leaves a master after 3 hours or 1 hour or 2 hours we’re on the road, right? Could be goal setting. Lights me up.
00:23:08 – Gloria Grace Rand
Yeah, I was going to say learning to master, but now that won’t work either.
00:23:15 – Michelle Gladieux
Yeah, no, that works. I mean, lifelong learning is probably one of the best things we can do for our health.
00:23:20 – Gloria Grace Rand
Absolutely. What are you curious about right now?
00:23:24 – Michelle Gladieux
Well, I am curious about let’s see I have a coworker named Tim and he is our project manager for personality assessments. And we do many personality assessments in all types of industries and government and academia with coaching clients. So he has been breaking down the data from the last few years to see if there are any interesting commonalities. If you are extroverted, are you more likely then to be motivated by security or significance? What type of conflict management styles generally correspond to what personality gifts? So I’m curious to see what the research, some of our folks at Gladieux Consulting that they’re doing, how that will turn out. And I’m blessed to be able to kind of point to them and say, hey, Lise, would you go find out more about how we can build patience or how can folks manage impressions to put their best foot forward? And then we work together and publish very short, like two page research summaries that we pop up on our website that folks might like. One recent one. All ten of us on my team decided to give up one worry for one month because I’m noticing as a coach that the business folks I’m helping are sometimes consumed with worry. And that makes it very hard to be your best as a communicator. So I started experimenting with the goal of what if we just named one worry? And then when it comes up in our mind, we say out loud or we say to ourselves, nope, now I’m not giving that any headspace this month. It can come back next month if I want it back, but not this month. How freeing this has been. And none of our clients, when they’re trying the exercise out, none of them say they want the worry back after 30 days, some say that it was pressing, it kept coming up because it almost didn’t want to be dismissed. Maybe life of its own. So I am also curious about how can we help people overcome not only obstacles related to specifically to communication, but also some mental health challenges, like how much are we really going to worry when life is so short?
00:25:26 – Gloria Grace Rand
Well, I’m curious myself to know how the research is going to turn out because that sounds like a really worthwhile thing to be able to figure out. How do personality traits correspond with that? And I was actually thinking as well that have you found that is there one style or one perhaps hidden challenge that does seem to come up more often among those four? Or does it? And this might even be something to research later. I wonder if how they appear in different industries, maybe.
00:26:02 – Michelle Gladieux
Well, we have a lot of high D or high dominant or driver clients, because those are the types that usually hire an executive coach. It’s really a privilege that not everyone can access, which is why we try to put so many free tools and good things to read on the website. But I have noticed that rationalizing the negative, the third hidden challenge in my book, it seems that highly rational, highly cognitive individuals, sometimes those who are quite analytical, can sometimes be plagued with pessimism more aka rationalizing the negative, they tend to usually have a more black and white view of the world and maybe a bit less flexible. They have beautiful minds. They are highly skilled with detail work. But they might suffer from the third hidden challenge more than some of the others. It’s tough to generalize, of course, honestly, now that the book is out, it’s been about four years of writing. Four and a half years, and then working through edits to get the book out. I haven’t really had a chance to show it to much of the world yet. So now we’re starting to get feedback on what people think of the hidden challenges. But this, November 1, 2022, is the first that that concept was published. Maybe I’m trying to persuade you to invite me back someday.
00:27:19 – Gloria Grace Rand
It would be perfectly…
00:27:21 – Michelle Gladieux
I’m sure you do have a long line of people.
00:27:24 – Gloria Grace Rand
Absolutely. And what’s interesting that you commented on that highly analytical people tend to do that. Actually, I’m going to ask this instead. How do you help them? How do you help them with that?
00:27:40 – Michelle Gladieux
I ask them if they would be interested in taking baby steps to try on some different communication styles and actions that aren’t usually found in folks who demonstrate their type of personality. So you’re beautifully blessed at this and this. We can show you through our personality assessment data, compared to 110,000 survey takers in the last ten years, ten to twelve years, you have less of this natural gift. Would you like to learn some ways that you can develop that gift? And most folks will say yes. We have to remember that our strengths are wedded to our weaknesses tightly.
Gloria Grace Rand
I love to talk, and you love to talk. We’re going to talk over each other. Listening is harder. That’s okay. That’s just who we are. We’re being who we are. And we’re trying very hard to take turns. And I think we’re doing a good job, by the way, Gloria. But we have to understand that comes from a place of strength and if we overuse the strength, now we’re moving into weaknesses territory. So often folks that we’re coaching or training can be best approached by looking at how the strength overused.
00:28:43 – Gloria Grace Rand
00:28:46 – Michelle Gladieux
Our hearts are in this and our egos are in this and everybody wants to be valued and respected and successful, and so carefully. I think when we talk about people’s weaknesses to them we should be forthright but kind.
00:28:59 – Gloria Grace Rand
Yeah. And I remember I think I had a coach one time who said that it was that our weakness is our strength turned up too high and.
That’s often true.
Gloria Grace Rand
Yeah. Is there anything else, any other question that I didn’t ask you that I should have or any other last bit of advice you’d like to leave our listeners today?
00:29:22 – Michelle Gladieux
I would like to leave our listeners with the answers to a training exercise I did recently with an auditorium full of folks who were interested in improving their customer service strategies, their customer communication strategies. So we played a game and it involved just one question and scrap paper. And the question was, if you look back at a conversation or an interaction by email or text, just a regular everyday kind of communication interaction you had today and you tried to think about polishing it by just 1%. So if you could go back in time, how would you improve your side of the communication? And then I had folks take out a piece of scrap paper, no names and just pass their answers down to me. I took all these answers and I wrote some of them down to share with you today and here are a few. And I guess what I want you to hear is how normal it is to look back hindsight being 20/20 and think shoulda, coulda, woulda sort of thing. And also how a person sitting next to you might want to change something about what they said or did or how they listened. And you might have a very opposite idea for improvement. And both are beautiful. So here were some of the answers: I could have verbalized a positive about my coworker before I complained. I could have sounded more confident. Someone else said, I wish I would have sounded less arrogant. I could have let it go but didn’t. I could have gathered the other person’s opinions first. I could have listened longer to diffuse some frustration. I could have, this is one of my favorites, I could have picked up the call sounding like I cared, honest. I could have reread my email before I hit send. I could have avoided saying something rudely just because I was busy. I could have followed up but didn’t. I could have thanked the person but forgot. I could have used their name but didn’t ask. I could have not interrupted. I could have copied those who need to know or would like to know what I was writing about. And then one person said I could have got to the point faster while another said I could have slowed my role so they could have understood more fully. Isn’t that great? Just like a five minute think of something you could have done better. So it’s everybody. It doesn’t mean there’s anything wrong with you if your communication needs work, you’re right where you’re supposed to be. However, there’s a brighter day ahead and more rewards out there if we just give it a little bit more energy.
00:31:44 – Gloria Grace Rand
Absolutely. Oh, I love that. Thank you so much for sharing those wonderful examples. And I think we’ve all done that, all of them at one point or another thought.
00:31:55 – Michelle Gladieux
I’ve already messed up today. But I also put my whole heart into this presentation, a book talk. And folks seemed grateful and I was a little nervous, but it went okay, especially when I talked to myself on the way in. I watched what I was saying to myself and I said, I’m just going to do my very best and be me because that’s the only person I’m good at being. Here we go.
00:32:17 – Gloria Grace Rand
Yeah, exactly. And that’s why, again, I decided at the beginning I could have easily stopped the recording, started over again. And I have done that sometimes. But I felt today I’m just going to let it go so that people understand I’m human, too.
00:32:35 – Michelle Gladieux
I loved it. I loved it. So we could choose sometimes to show our humanity and that inspires others. Well, maybe somebody out there wants to start a podcast, but thought, only perfect orators do podcasts. Not true. Thank you for yours. That’s one thing I want to end with. Thank you for all the light you put into the world and the way that you help connect people and educate people. I’ve been enjoying the podcast, having learned about it since you invited me on and now it accompanies me on walks.
00:33:04 – Gloria Grace Rand
00:33:06 – Michelle Gladieux
00:33:09 – Gloria Grace Rand
That warms my heart. I appreciate that. And I have enjoyed this interview, as I knew I was going to. You shared a wealth of information that I know everybody out there listening is going to benefit from. So let me ask you this, and I know we already mentioned your website, but where can people get the book and maybe share the title of that again as well.
00:33:28 – Michelle Gladieux
Sure. You can, really it’s everywhere. Books are sold. So if you like Amazon and that’s easy, I’d be honored if you went out there to find it. But it’s at Porchlight and all kinds of independent booksellers. Also, I recorded the audible. That was a first for me and that required courage because I have never narrated a book. But these stories were so personal that I couldn’t imagine someone else’s voice talking about, oh, for example, the 50 Harley guys that came to my big brother’s funeral when he passed away at 27 and I was 19. And how them being themselves and showing up authentically in that church healed my soul. So I couldn’t imagine someone else trying that. So if they like audible, it’s audible, ebook or paperback. And then at our website, you can sign up for a quarterly newsletter called Breakdown that we put together to get more free resources in hands. And we always include a music video because I’m a music nut. And that is called Breakdown, named after the Tom Petty and the Heartbreaker song, because I might be the biggest Tom Petty song I’m sorry, the biggest Tom Petty fan you’ve met. I’m not sure, but possible.
00:34:34 – Gloria Grace Rand
Okay, I’ll take your word for it.
00:34:36 – Michelle Gladieux
The book is communicate with courage, taking risks to overcome the four hidden challenges.
00:34:42 – Gloria Grace Rand
Excellent. All right, well, I will have all of that information in the show notes, so I’ll put a link to the book there as well, so you don’t have to search on Amazon. You’ll find it right there. I’m so, so appreciative of you being here today and sharing your wisdom with our audience. And, yeah, I’m open to having you back, especially. Let me know when you get that research done.
00:35:06 – Michelle Gladieux
00:35:06 – Gloria Grace Rand
When Tim gets that done. And then if you find something really exciting about it and you want to come back on, definitely reach out to me.
00:35:15 – Michelle Gladieux
For sure. There’s always something exciting to learn about human communication.
00:35:19 – Gloria Grace Rand
That’s for sure. All right. And I do want to thank all of you for listening and for watching. I so appreciate you. And I encourage you to not only take advantage of Michelle’s offer today, if you found value out of this episode, to please share it with a friend. If you’re not subscribed already on your favorite podcast platform, please do that. And until next time, as always, I encourage you to go out and live fully, love deeply, and engage authentically.