Take Time to Express Your Intentions

by Sonya Shelton

CommunicationIn any situation, where there’s a vacuum of information, people will make it up. This is especially true of leaders in organizations. People constantly interpret the motives of everything the leader says and does. So it’s best to express your intention, so no one wastes time trying to figure it out or make it up.

Many leaders think they need to keep their motivations secret to protect themselves. But actually, withholding the information creates more stress, frustration, and confusion, as well as a lack of productivity.

Your team wants to understand what you expect from them so they can do it and do it well. They also want to know where you’re coming from. What is crystal clear to you might be foggy to them. Take the guesswork out for them and simply tell them.

Before every interaction, take a minute to explicitly share your intention — where you’re coming from, what’s the outcome you want, and what’s the experience you want others to have.

You can do this in any setting from a one-on-one meeting to a group discussion to a board presentation. When you express your intention, you’re more likely to get the outcome you seek.



How will you express your intention in every interaction you have today?

What can you do to ensure you continue to express your intention?


“Creating deliberate intentions is the ultimate transformational leadership behavior,

even under dire circumstances.”

~ Greg Hicks

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