Motivational speaker Garrison Wynn talks to attendees during the event.
Motivational speaker Garrison Wynn entertained district employees with funny stories interspersed with "lessons" about unity, teamwork and successful relationships.
He said that studies show that the No. 1 thing to do when dealing with difficult people - some of them know-it-all experts - is to praise their abilities. "It's very important that they know you know they know something," he said.
Secondly, paraphrase what they say and lead them to find their own errors because pointing out their mistakes does not work and thirdly, focus on the solution, Wynn said."If you criticize others' ideas, they will almost never use yours, no matter how good they are," Wynn said. Another valuable lesson, Wynn said, is that "if you make people feel important, you and what you have to offer will be important to them."
Wynn suggested that the employees remember that "everybody knows something you don't." He warned, "That moment when you think you know it all and don't need input from anybody, wisdom leaves you. What's interesting is your talents, your skills and your experience stay, but wisdom leaves."
He said that it takes time to build trust, which is built on the foundation of compassion and competence. "When people believe you care about them and their future and their being, and they think that you can do your job, they will trust you pretty quickly up front," he said. Sincerity, body language, eye contact, voice tone and willingness to listen play a role in causing people to feel you really do care and are competent, Wynn said.
Surveys of people who are successful in building relationships show that they can clearly explain the value of something up front, Wynn said. "It doesn't matter how smart you are if nobody knows what you are talking about," he said."Gratitude is important because opinion dramatically affects productivity; if someone feels you're not grateful enough with their effort, those efforts will go down," Wynn said. He urged looking for the strengths of people and working to improve weaknesses.
"Another issue is change - resistance to change is the problem, not change. Action and adaptability bring opportunity," Wynn said. He said that changing situations take understanding and tolerance."Success lives in us, leadership lives in us. Being able to create unity lives in us," Wynn said. "It doesn't come from anywhere else. We know if we treat people really well consistently that they will do more of what we ask. We know if we treat people the best way we can, that things move along smoothly and it breeds productivity."
Wynn urged district employees to "Never forget the value you have, the value you bring. The reality is you're not just an educational institution. You are a team of caring people who are directly responsible for the future of this country." Betty Waters covers Tyler public schools. She can be reached at 903.596.6286. e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
©Tyler Morning Telegraph 2006