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Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella has execs read ‘Nonviolent Communication’

Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella.
Stephen Lam/Getty Images

When Satya Nadella turned CEO of Microsoft in 2014, he inherited an organization whose tradition was recognized for hostility, infighting, and backstabbing amongst its highest executives.

To flip the corporate round, he made the members of his senior management workforce read the ebook “Nonviolent Communication” by psychologist Marshall B. Rosenberg. Nadella handed out copies of the 2003 ebook at his first government assembly.

It was an indication Nadella deliberate to run Microsoft in a different way than his predecessor, Steve Ballmer.

In “Nonviolent Communication,” Rosenberg preaches compassion and empathy as cornerstones to efficient communication.

I took a take a look at “Nonviolent Communication,” and located the teachings apply effectively past the Microsoft boardroom. Here are the three largest takeaways:

1. Effective communication has 4 parts

According to the ebook, there are 4 parts to efficient communication:

  • Observing what is occurring in a scenario (comparable to somebody saying or doing one thing you do not like)
  • Stating how you’re feeling while you observe the motion
  • Expressing how your wants are linked to the emotions you recognized
  • Addressing what you need by requesting a concrete motion

An instance of all 4 parts being met could be a mom telling her teenage son, “Felix, when I see two balls of soiled socks under the coffee table and another three next to the TV, I feel irritated because I am needing more order in the rooms that we share in common. Would you be willing to put your socks in your room or in the washing machine?”

2. Our observations are sometimes clouded by evaluations

Rosenberg says that good communicators are capable of separate their observations of a scenario from their evaluations, or judgments of it.

For instance, the sentence “Janice works too much” accommodates an analysis — working an excessive amount of is subjective, and if Janice heard that, she might take it as criticism and grow to be defensive. On the opposite hand, saying “Janice spent more than 60 hours at the office this week” is merely an commentary with none judgments hooked up.

Rosenberg wrote that he as soon as heard “observing without evaluating is the highest form of human intelligence,” and stated he was initially dismissive of the concept.

“When I first read this statement, the thought, ‘What nonsense!’ shot through my mind before I realized that I had just made an evaluation,” he wrote. “For most of us, it is difficult to make observations, especially of people and their behavior, that are free of judgment, criticism, or other forms of analysis.”

three. We have to strengthen our vocabulary for emotions

One of essentially the most attention-grabbing elements of the ebook is a bit on studying to establish and specific your emotions.

Rosenberg writes that while you’re expressing your emotions, it is higher to make use of phrases that check with particular feelings relatively than phrases which might be obscure and common. Don’t say you’re feeling “good” when phrases like blissful, excited, relieved, or anything may describe how you’re feeling extra exactly.

“Words such as good and bad prevent the listener from connecting easily with what we might actually be feeling,” he stated.

On prime of that, Rosenberg says it is useful to differentiate between phrases that describe our precise emotions and phrases that describe what we predict others are doing. For instance, saying “I feel unimportant to the people I work with” might sound such as you’re expressing your emotions, however you are actually describing the way you assume different individuals are evaluating you. The underlying feeling is likely to be unhappiness, discouragement, or one thing else.

Similarly, saying “I feel ignored” is much less an expression of your individual emotions and extra an interpretation of how different individuals are appearing towards you. And the identical goes for phrases like uncared for, cheated, taken with no consideration, and used.

“By developing a vocabulary of feelings that allows us to clearly and specifically name or identify our emotions, we can connect more easily with one another,” Rosenberg wrote.

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About Jason Doughty

Jason M. Doughty writes for Investing and Strategy sections in AmericaRichest.

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