The first GAIL is called the Gremlin. We all have those inner voices that drive us to ignore our self-care routines, feed our anxieties, and judge our actions harshly. Sometimes those voices are called the Inner Critic, or Voice of Judgement. Gremlins are barriers to community, shared purpose and the value of each unique individual.
The Gremlin can zap energy needed for long-term projects and strategic planning. It can skew the ability to assess the needs of team members, lowering the probabilities of retention. Finally, the Gremlin can interfere with situational awareness. Owners can feel isolated at home and at the company without the ability to integrate and shift from one role to another with ease.
The psychology of an M&A (mergers & acquisitions) transaction matters. However, I believe that psychology matters every day. Each company is built on the strength of its people. Each person has strengths, needs, and gaps in ability. The resilience of the people in an organization is related to its resilience. How can owners replace the voice of the Gremlin with the collective of the community? With a sense of community and replacing the voice of the Gremlin with the ability to really listen as one of the values of the organization.
Here are 3 Strategies for Gremlin Containment:
Name that voice. If this Gremlin belongs to you, naming it on paper or with a colleague or mentor, lessens the power of the voice. If you hear the echoes of a Gremlin in your colleague, consider asking, “It sounds like you are thinking………….did I capture that accurately?” Don’t worry if the other person corrects your impression, this is often enough to shift the energy in the room and create enough space in their minds to move the Gremlin to the side.
Note that voice. If this Gremlin belongs to you, speak it out loud or write it down. Above you named it, here you are shining a spotlight on it. The spotlight allows you to examine it to see if it stands up to closer scrutiny.
Ask it, “Is this really true?” Put it through a cross examination process. Ask your mentor for support with this. If it’s true, what can you learn from it? If it’s not, how is this serving you right now?
As a coach, I assist clients with this process. It isn’t easy. It takes practice. But, you CAN do it! Call me if you’re ready to lead your team without that Gremlin’s voice echoing through your head. (804-372-7575)