Although our three kitties have very different personalities, they all communicate clearly what they want or need.

Let’s take attention as an example.

When Einstein needs some attention, he carts around a toy in his mouth, making some kind of muffled sound until he finds you. The toy is a gift that he drops for us to acknowledge, rub his head and tell him he’s a good boy. He looks so proud and purrs the whole time.

Moo will get beside you and stand on her back legs while squeaking and tapping you with her paw. She’s determined to get your attention because your lap is her destination. As soon as you move so she can jump, she’s in your lap and making biscuits, purring as loudly as she can.

Cap’n Jack sits right at your feet and leans into your body. Sometimes he seems like he’s reaching up so you will pick him up and rub his back. Purring the whole time.

Each kitty has their own way of asking for what they want.
And each one is willing to ask.
Most of the time sweetly, but sometimes they can be insistent, especially when they think you are taking too long.

As leaders, we need to get clear on what we want and why.

Then we need to speak up.
As a leader, it’s your responsibility to set the vision and direction for your project, organization, or business. And although it may seem repetitive, asking and communicating often is necessary and so important. Sometimes you’ll need to repeat yourself multiple times, in different styles to get things started and moving.
For some individuals, they only need a nudge to understand what’s needed and support. For others, you may need to be a bit more direct.
If you have a question that will impact a decision you’re making, be willing to ask and patiently listen for the answer. If you’d like periodic updates on a project, communicate your expectations and remind your teammates only as needed.
Once you’re clear on your vision and your why, be willing to enthusiastically communicate it clearly, succinctly, and frequently.  Your enthusiasm coupled with your ability to ensure your team, colleagues, and customers know what to expect and what to do will hone your communication skills and strengthen your leadership practice.
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