How long does it take you to frame what you want to say to people? If you’re well trained and familiar with politically correct language that turns most dialogue to beige, then probably not long at all.
It takes more time and thoughtfulness to prepare a script using direct, honest, specific and useful language. And who has time?!
Most executives I know are well versed in diluting the impact of their messages by smearing them with jargon, qualifiers and adjectives designed to soften. It’s easy and acceptable. It just isn’t effective.
If you have something important to say or you want to galvanise, inspire or excite your staff, be direct, honest and explicit.
You won’t energise anyone by telling them how important it is that they meet their stretch targets and key performance indicators in order to achieve the company’s forecasted budget. You will get their attention if you told them they needed to generate $2 million dollars in fees and bring in 5 new clients to get their 10% bonus.
Likewise telling someone that you feel they could do better if they showed just a little more initiative is unlikely to have any impact at all. Telling that same person that they need to speak up in meetings, meet their commitments, and schedule weekly client review sessions without being prompted might be harder to say, but certainly more useful.