As I coach my clients, I often hear them tell me that Sandler training has not only impacted them professionally, but also personally. This got me thinking about the principles of Sandler and how they could impact our parenting effectiveness.
1. Communication style/adaptation-How well do you know your communication style? Are you able to adapt your style to your child (prospect or customer) so that you can communicate better? This alone could be a game changer for developing relationships with those around you.
2. Accountability/Expectations-Do you have clear and defined expectations for behavior, chores, school, and friends? Are you consistent and do you hold your child accountable for their choices and behaviors? At the beginning of every summer my husband and I sat down and assigned summer chores by the week. This was a rotating schedule with one of the job descriptions for the week mommy’s helper. That position was filled with whatever mom asks. Setting these expectations up front left no room for argument or confusion. Just like when we work with our customers or prospects, it is our job to make sure that there is no mutual mystification or that we are always on the same page.Most people actually thrive on discipline. Having a system that allows you to succeed makes you feel empowered. Don’t fool yourself that you are doing your child a favor by not disciplining them or holding them accountable. This is a huge disservice to them that will not help them to be a successful adult.
3. Attitude-If you are a student of the Sandler system you would know that we talk a lot about how Behavior drives Attitude. So often in the business world we see employees with bad attitudes. How do change a bad attitude in our child or our employee? By setting defined behaviors that we have to do on a daily basis and celebrating any small victory from doing those behaviors, we will start to change our attitude regarding it. My son has been named the all time garbage man at our house from age 5. He is now 18. He never really loved the title, but it was a behavior that was expected of him weekly and he has accepted it and does it with a willing heart every week. He was even on spring break last week and texted me Tuesday night to remind me to take the garbage out since he wasn’t home. Behavior can change and drive attitude!
4. Respect/Equal Business Stature-When we deal with customers and prospects we want to create an atmosphere of mutual respect that we call Equal Business Stature. I am a firm believer that the parent is to be in charge and respected, but I think that in order to develop a long lasting relationship with our child we need to create that area of mutual respect. This holds true with our employees, customers and prospects alike. How do we do that?
- Work through problems together-craft a solution as a team, just like you should with a customer or prospect.This keeps the lines of communication open so that when a problem arises they know that they can come to you and work through it together
- Be a good active listener-show them that you are listening by your body language as well as paraphrasing and restating what they say to you.
- Ask questions-How often do we ask, How was your day? and get the response Fine. The end. How different would our conversation be if we asked, Tell me one thing you did in school today?, then tell me more about that. Asking the right questions and knowing how to dig deeper into the underlying meanings is a skill that you have to practice and consciously implement. Asking the right questions to get down to the emotion of the subject can help you build a deep bond with your child.
Do I have perfect children or all the answers? No. I do have 3 great kids who are now self-sufficient adults. We have created a strong relationship of love and respect towards each other that will never be broken. This bond will get you through terrible 2’s, the teenage years and beyond. Spend time developing your relationships with intention in both your business and personal life. It will make for meaningful and rewarding experiences for years to come.