"NO ONE EVER ASKED ME"


If you've watched the Jerry Lewis movie 'The Bellboy', you may remember a scene where Stanley's (played by Lewis) boss yells at him in front of all his co-workers, mistakenly believing that Stanley is instigating his colleagues to go on a strike. He accuses him of being a troublemaker, an instigator. This couldn't be further from the truth because Stanley never speaks in the entire movie (except towards the end). He's so taken aback by the false accusation that he keeps fidgeting and shaking his head repeatedly. Enraged, his boss finally yells 'Can't you talk?' and demands an explanation for why they've never heard him talk before. And then Jerry Lewis says the famous line: "Because no one ever asked me." This snapshot always brings home to me a powerful message: The importance of effective communication in the workplace. One of my coaching clients struggled to make herself visible in the workplace. Her colleagues didn't take her seriously and she was never considered for lucrative promotions. On digging further, I realised she rarely contributed to group discussions....rarely spoke up in meetings...In fact, she never had anything to say about anything. It was only when we worked on her ability to put her point across at key moments that her career began to soar. In the modern workforce, it's important to have a voice and then to make it heard at the right times. If you get a brilliant idea, don't stay quiet just because you think others might ridicule you. If you don't say anything, chances are one of your colleagues will and they'll walk away with all the credit. This doesn't mean you should simply speak randomly for the sake of speaking. But whenever the opportunity arises to share your insights or opinions, don't hesitate. Leadership is all about recognising which issues deserve your voice - and then rising up to the challenge. Nim Gholkar, 2020 #EffectiveCommunication #Leadership #SpeakUp

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