#74 5 Strategies for Effectively Communicating with Higher-Ups in Large Organizations

The 360 Leadhership Podcast, Episode 74, 24 May 2023 by Lucy Gernon

Are you finding it challenging to convince decision-makers to act on your proposals?

Or do your ideas seem to fall on deaf ears?

This topic was inspired by a recent coaching session in my mastermind group, where a member expressed difficulty in influencing change when communicating up.

According to McKinsey, the average employee spends nearly 30% of their work week on emails, meetings, and other communication tasks, yet effective communication remains a challenge, especially when communicating with higher-ups.

Many women in senior leadership roles I have worked with have also expressed difficulty in effectively communicating their ideas and opinions, often feeling undermined by imposter syndrome and a lack of confidence, while men appear more confident and assertive.

Can you relate?

In a previous podcast episode, I discussed how to manage your manager and build a good working relationship with them. But how can you take this to the next level and effectively communicate with your superiors to get them to actually listen and see you as the competent, amazing leader you are?

By being strong and assertive, your higher ups will view you as a competent and confident professional who is capable of leading and making tough decisions. This can lead to greater opportunities for you within the organization.

With the right strategies and support, you can learn to effectively communicate your ideas and opinions with ease.

To get you started, Here are three out of five strategies covered in episode 74 of The Powerhouse Revolution podcast. These strategies will help you become a more effective communicator so you can feel seen and heard, especially when communicating with your superiors:

1. Unearth Your Unshakeable Confidence

Walk into the room knowing your facts and being unshakable in what you want to say! Practicing rehearsing your presentation and delivery, speaking to yourself in the mirror, and thinking about why you’re doing this can help you build conviction that your ideas CAN make a difference when communicating up.

In one of my recent episodes, you can discover how to boost your confidence and say goodbye to imposter syndrome in work, something I know as an executive coach, many women leaders can struggle with.

2. Build Rapport

Establish relationships and trust with people in higher positions before you need their approval. Building rapport with them by greeting them in the hallways, having regular meetings to learn from them, asking them to be a mentor or asking for their advice can help. You must give back to them before asking for anything in return, filling their cup with the good stuff. This way, when you do ask for something, they will be more likely to listen to you.

Win, win right?

3. Practice, Practice, Practice!

Practise and prepare for your conversation or presentation in advance. With a bit of prep, you can build your confidence and composure, which can go a long way towards your success with higher-ups. But don’t over-prepare as it can put so much pressure to get it all right, that you might end up getting it wrong. Trust yourself, you know what you’re doing.

Your ideas have value, and you deserve to be heard. It will also increase your chances of success and make a positive impact in your workplace.

Just trust yourself, you know what you’re doing. Your ideas have value, and you deserve to be heard. Going in with a game plan and confidence will also increase your chances of success and make a positive impact in your workplace.

Want to discover the final two strategies that are guaranteed to help you communicate like a pro? Check out this episode of the podcast.

Here’s the episode at a glance:

[3:53] The crucial point you must understand in order to be successful

[5:42] The very FIRST step to master effective communication

[13:24] The #1 reason you are not being heard by higher ups and how to fix it

[16:25] The 2 most important traits women leaders should have to communicate successfully

If you want to learn more about Powerhouse Elite Mastermind where you will only be a message away from a group of like minded supportive women in senior leadership roles to encourage uplift and inspire you, DM me the word ELITE on Instagram or on LinkedIn.

Or you can send me an email at lucy@lucygernon.com with the word ELITE and I can explain everything. I promise, you won’t regret it!

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