We've all had one of 'those' conversations. The kind that falls flat at best and cuts deeply at worst. Sometimes we walk into those conversations feeling prepared and rehearsed - knowing the key points you want to get across, focused on listening to the other person, and still it does not end the way you imagined. Other times, we rush into communicating without any thought at all and everything is beautiful.
Why is it that some conversations do not land well and others are flawless?
What I have experienced is that exceptional communication can be boiled down to 5 simple elements. Person. Place. Time. Tone. Content. Easy? Not always. Doable? Absolutely.
When you have all 5 right, you'll hit it out of the park almost every time. Really, even if you can get 4 of them nailed most of the time, you're doing pretty good!
It all comes down to communicating with the right person in the right place at the right time in the right tone with the right content.
I'm so happy to share some insights and stories from the recent Money Mindset: Bookkeeping event that happened on a drizzly, cozy evening at the beginning of June.
About 40 people came together to connect with each other, have some food+drink and hear from our three panelists about all things money, how to make more of it (and feel good about it!) and the nitty gritty details of how to keep our books in order.
Katie Condon is a bookkeeper who specializes in small to medium-sized businesses including sole proprietors, incorporations, and non-profits. Meg Craig is a creative director and brand strategist who owns Skysail Brand and Hailey Thompson is the owner of Here no There, a home decor and gift shop in Mahone Bay.
Katie started the discussion off with the story of how she became a bookkeeper - from a stay at home mom to a successful business owner who empowers others to take control of their businesses by understanding their money and bookkeeping. She encouraged everyone to keep their personal and business separate - from the beginning, if possible - so that you have a very clear story of what money is coming and going. She also said to get an accountant that you can build a relationship with - someone who has your back and can advise you as your business grows.
Can we talk about this?
I used to believe there was a way to balance it all. That there was a magical land where the pieces of our lives fell into tidy compartments, wonderfully and equally balanced, so that we can fully focus on each independently and successfully.
Now that I’ve tossed that notion out the window (for the most part..I'm always working on it!) and have embraced that my work is integrated into my life, unapologetically, I’m starting to see a shift.
Some might call it a mindset shift. I like to think of it as a lifestyle shift. It’s not all sunshine and roses, by any means, but by not trying to separate my life as a friend, parent, entrepreneur, community member, partner, human, family member, etc, etc...I feel better about fitting all these bits into my life.
I used to be a dedicated paper planner user and was so happy when a friend and co-worker introduced me to Polestar planners - did you ever use one of those? Maybe you still do? I loved mine and it was where I jotted everything down (work and life) back in the day before I had a cell phone...it's almost hard to believe I didn't carry a phone with me at all times?!
It has only really been with in the last couple of years since I stopped using a paper planner (but to be completely honest? I have a fancy 90 day planner I haven't used yet...more on that in another post!) and went digital and shifted everything over to google calendar.
It was certainly an adjustment (though, I still keep a notebook in my bag!) to go digital but I can't imagine it any other way now. Being able to share a family calendar, access it on the go in order to confirm meetings and set up client work is worth the awkward transition time it takes to swap it all over.
Have you gone 100% digital? Or do you stray away from cloud-based calendars?
Maybe you have a hybrid system?
Do you use a planner? Write lists on scraps of paper? Hold your breath and cross your fingers that you don’t forget anything? Family calendar on the fridge or inside the cupboard door?
Please share in the comments what kind of system you use in your life/work/business!