Tips, Videos, Handouts

Assumptions lead to trouble

Good Group Tips

In principle, there are three ways of knowing about something or someone: what we know, what we don’t know, and what we think we know…and it’s usually what we think we know that gets us in trouble. When we assume things, we gamble; the bigger the assumption, the bigger the risk.

In any endeavor based on assumptions we can absolutely count on some of them giving way, like support timbers under a house collapsing. Some assumptions may hold for a long time, some almost forever, but most will collapse at a bad time and cause damage. When we make decisions based on facts and when we acknowledge all that we do not know, the long-term outcomes are better.

Practical Tip: When analyzing a situation write down what you know, what you don’t know, and what you assume. Naming assumptions is key. Want to play it safe? Don’t make assumptions. How? Catch yourself making assumptions.

– Craig Freshley

Click here for one-page PDF of this Tip, a great way to print or share.

Put the Tips in action for your group. Click here to learn about Craig’s Keynotes and Seminars.

Double-check your decision

In this two-minute video Craig explains a simple technique to make sure everyone is on the same page with a group decision.

The idea comes from Patrick Lencioni and his book called The Five Dysfunctions of a Team.

Don’t perpetuate the “lack of commitment” dysfunction. Double-check your decisions.

This video has captions. To see them, click CC on the video screen.

Here’s what Craig says in the video

Hi everybody. Hey it’s Craig Freshley here.

So you work through the issues, you’ve made compromises, you have come to a group decision. Everybody goes their own ways and when you come back together the next time, it’s clear that when you left thinking you had made a group decision there were different interpretations of what you had actually decided. It seemed clear in the moment but when you went out into the world and told other people about the decision or started actually implementing the decision, it started to become apparent that maybe you weren’t as clear on what that decision was as you thought you were.

Here is a simple and effective way to double-check your decision. Before you leave out into the world ask yourself, “How are we going to communicate this decision to others?’ It’s like two parents working through some sort of issue with the family and then they ask the question, “What are we going to tell the kids?”

Asking that question — well yeah it helps you explore what you’re going to actually tell the kids or the employees or the constituents or the members or whatever — but it also forces you to go back and see if you’re on the same page about what you decided.

When you actually have to figure out the messaging that you’re going to use to convey the thing that you decided, it makes you double-check what it is that you actually decided.

Thanks for listening everybody! I hope this helps you help your group make good group decisions.

Put the Tips in action for your group. Click here to learn about Craig’s Keynotes and Seminars.

More wagging, less barking

Good Group Tips

In principle, you know when a dog is happy to see you, and when not. People wag and bark too, in different ways. When two dogs approach each other wagging, expecting friendship, the outcome is almost always good. When one or more dogs are barking, it is hard to make good group decisions.

Practical Tip: Approach people wagging, expecting good things. Carry a sunny disposition. Look for the good in every person and in every situation…and let your optimism show. Wag more. Bark less.

– Craig Freshley

Click here for one-page PDF of this Tip, a great way to print or share.

Put the Tips in action for your group. Click here to learn about Craig’s Keynotes and Seminars.
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