When we are young we are taught to speak when spoken to; wait for someone to ask for your opinion; you don’t understand and speak up. These are all appropriate lessons when you are of a certain age; however, the challenged becomes that in adulthood some of us still believe that during meaningful discussions we have nothing to contribute.
Well, We Can’t Hear You…so, Speak Up.
Its Time to Speak Up.
I recently participated in a national conference call regarding proposed regulation changes. After about a 30 minutes of just listening, a question was posed to the attendees and I responded. I presented my response – an alternative to the initial regulation. Thereafter, the organizer of the conference call did not acknowledge my statement but proceeded to discuss a previous remark. I was shocked. What was I going to do? How should this be handled? Should I speak up?
See I believe that the best collaborative efforts are successful when Everybody’s Contribution Matters; All Participants must be Heard; Opinions should be Respected; Acknowledgement and Agreement are Different; and that Everybody has Added Value.
So, I waited for an opening because maybe she did not hear me or I was unclear (benefit of the doubt) and restated my alternative and waited for a response. This time I received an acknowledgment and further comments regarding my comment. Speaking Up takes a number of things but the main factor is You. You have to decide that your contribution matters.
I decided to Speak Up, Will You?
Share a story of the last time you decided to Speak Up.