Have you ever had incorrect intent ascribed to your actions? Why did that happen?

Many think of leadership as a war of political gamesmanship and cutthroat advancement. Such outdated Machiavellian attitudes have evolved into the desire to build cultures of high transparency, collaboration, and trust.

Today, few people want to work in environments of concealment and one-upmanship. Declaring our intent in conversations, especially in adversarial or high-stakes conversations, is crucial to creating mutual understanding, if not mutual agreement. When we declare our intent, we become a trustworthy and credible source.

According to Dr. Blaine Lee, author of The Power Principle: Influence With Honor, “Nearly all, if not all conflict arises from mismatched or unfulfilled expectations.” Make sure that what you intend people to hear and see is what they actually hear and see. The less clear you are, the more you are responsible for their lack of clarity.