This is the official discussion thread of the webinar Leadership Webinar Jul 2015 - Todd C Williams - Sponsorship Challenges: What Would You Do?
Here we will post all the questions asked during the webinar as well as presentation slides.. Also there is an offer for people who watch the live webinar or recording to Get the white paper: Challenges In Executive Project Sponsorship - $14.95 value for free! (Offer valid through July 24, 2015). Any questions or issues please contatc me firstname.lastname@example.org - Suja
I will not get the transcript for a day or so and I am headed out on holiday for the weekend. As I love the outdoors, we are headed into the middle of the Washington Cascade Mountains (NW United States) with no connectivity. This means I will not be able to respond to your question and comments in a timely manner. I hope to start on this Monday night.
Savannah did, however, pick up one topic that she suggested that I talk about. That was on the tactics that I describe in the case study on “How to change your sponsor section”. There as discussion on how ethical the process was of “inspiring” my chosen sponsor over “discouraging” the current sponsor.
First, let me underscore, I told that same data to both people. The status of each item was accurately portrayed to each individual. What was changed was the focus on if project succeeds or fails and what the outcome would be:
With person A (who was not engaged in the project and by not being engaged contributing to its chances of failure) I was underscoring of how a failure might damage their reputation.
With person B (who was helping come up with solutions and supporting the success of the project) I was underscoring how their support would help the project and the success would look good for them.
Person A had every chance to say “I don’t want this to make me look bad. I had better really dig into this project and make it a success.” However, they chose not to do that.
Had I told them different information or omitted data that would have been unethical. But, I was telling them my opinion of where the project would end up under their sponsorship. I do not remember if I said this, but I told that same prediction of outcomes when I escalated the issue to the executives who actually made the change.
My data was accurate and honest. Was I manipulating the people involved? Yes. There is nothing unethical about that. Everyone does that every day. In every email written we choose words to persuade (manipulate) how people will reach to that email. If just take these two sentences:
1) I hate that idea, it needs to change.
2) Can we work together to change this idea?
Elicit completely different reactions for people. Depending on what type of conversation you want to have after those two comments will drive which on you will use. That is far from unethical; it is trying to get to a solution.
I hope this clears things up and generates good conversation.