About Keith Rowe
Having joined the workforce as a sixteen-year-old, Keith Rowe went on to become the Television and Electronic Technicians Institute of Australia (TETIA) Apprentice of the Year. From there, it was obligatory National Service, graduating from the Army’s Officer Training Unit (OTU) as a 2nd Lieutenant, and completing his two-year obligation as a Troop Commander within a Royal Australian Signals field regiment.
Back in the civilian workforce, Keith moved into sales and marketing with EMI, lucky enough to be offered the opportunity of a lifetime, with his appointment as inaugural National Sales Manager for the setting up of a Toshiba-EMI joint venture – the forerunner of Toshiba’s Australian operation. Eight years later, by then General Manager – Consumer Products for Toshiba Australia, he stood down to form his own company to pursue consulting and training work.
Keith also set up the Australian distributor for Casio (as Managing Director), the recovery of Sanyo’s market position in the early nineties (as General Manager – Sales and Marketing), and the re-structuring of Sharp Corporation of Australia (as Corporate Director and Group General Manager).
Keith has taken his renowned ‘KNACK of Selling’ program to wherever it was demanded across Australasia and Southeast Asia. He has conducted workshops in close to a hundred locations – from Sanyo’s International Headquarters in Osaka Japan to a scout hall in outback Australia – involving well over a thousand participants.
He has worked across a wide span of market sectors, including computers, sporting goods, jewellery, homewares, telecommunications, electronic components, and too many more to mention here today.
Keith is an active speaker, trainer, and writer, he has published close to a hundred articles and has an evolving series of books.
Lesson 1. The Expression “Knowledge Is Power” Is Now Redundant …” Knowhow” is now the power! 06:00
Lesson 2. EQ Trumps IQ Every Time! 12:32
Lesson 3. The New Business Opportunity…Customer Service 20:29
Lesson 4. Discrimination Versus Equality … Totally Different Things! 26:45
Lesson 5. Be skilled at having Conversations 34:14
Lesson 6. Don’t just talk. Question, Listen, and Watch! 41:09
Lesson 7. Persuasion Is A Matter Of Style … Conviction Is A Matter Of Process! 48:13
Lesson 8. “Do You Think?” Versus “Do You Feel” … Very Different Connotations! 51:39
Lesson 9. There Is A Difference Between Leadership Versus Management 54:36
Lesson 10. The Long-Term Challenges Of Preserving Relationships Are? 59:02
Keith Rowe – Don’t just talk. Question, Listen, and Watch!
[00:00:08] Robert Hossary: Hello and welcome to 10 Lessons Learned, where we talk to sages and gurus, leaders and luminaries from all over the world to dispense their wisdom for life and career in order to provide you shortcuts to excellence. My name is Robert Hossary, and I’m your host for this episode. Our guest today is Keith Rowe.
[00:00:28] Having joined the workforce as a 16-year-old Keith Rowe, went on to become the Television and Electronic Technicians Institute of Australia’s apprentice of the year. From there, it was the obligatory national service, graduating from the Army’s officer training unit as a second left tenant, or if you’re from another part of the world, a second lieutenant.
[00:00:50] And completing his two-year obligation as a troop commander within the Royal Australian Signal Field Regiment. Back in the civilian workforce. Keith moved into sales and marketing with EMI, lucky enough to be offered an opportunity of a lifetime with his appointment as inaugural National Sales Manager for setting up of a Toshiba EMI joint venture.
[00:01:15] Now, that was the forerunner for Toshiba Australia’s operation. Eight years later. By then general manager for Consumer Products for Toshiba Australia. He stood down to form his own company and to pursue consulting and training work.
[00:01:31] Keith also set up the Australian distributor for Casio as their managing director, the recovery of Sanyo’s market position in the early nineties, as general manager for sales and marketing and the restructuring of the Sharp Corporation of Australia as a corporate director and group general manager.
[00:01:50] Keith has taken his renowned ‘Knack of Selling’ program to wherever it was demanded across Australasia and Southeast Asia. He has conducted workshops in close to a hundred locations from Sanyo’s International headquarters in Osaka, Japan to a scout hall. Uh, this will be an interesting story to a scout hall in Outback Australia involving well over a thousand participants.
[00:02:15] He has worked across a wide span of market sectors, including computers, sporting woods, jewellery, homewares, telecommunication, electronic components, and too many others to mention here today. Keith Rowe is an active speaker, trainer and writer. He has published over a hundred articles and has an evolving book series, which you can find on Amazon.
[00:02:38] Hello Keith and welcome to the show.
[00:02:41] Keith Rowe: Hello, Rob.
[00:02:42] Robert Hossary: So, a scout hall in the outback.
[00:02:44] Keith Rowe: Yes, it was a small group. It was a telecom retailer actually, and they wanted their, the people trained in fronting the customer. And this is the case with a lot of technical people. They’re very happy being geeks. They’re very happy, tearing them back off a laptop computer.
[00:02:59] Very comfortable. Yep. Like you place them out the front of the store in front of a customer at all hell breaks loose. They just go to pieces. So, the training was essentially selling skills. And as, uh, as I’ve never advanced beyond just basic selling conversational skills,
[00:03:15] Robert Hossary: well, I mean, the location, uh, is what really got me.
[00:03:20] because I, I have been to the Outback once. Now mind you, I’ve lived in Australia for over 50 years, but I’ve been there once. and definitely not to train anybody that’s an interesting story. Keith, what we normally do with our guests is we ask a question, and every guest we’ve asked has found it fascinating. So, I’m going to ask you the same question. What would you tell your 30-year-old self if you had the chance?
[00:03:45] Keith Rowe: Well, Rob, that is awful. Long time ago. I mean, we’re talking there about the mid-seventies and that reflects the situation where we were forming Toshiba in Australia.
[00:03:56] I was jumping on and off aircraft. All I saw day today were meeting rooms, the inside of hotel rooms. I was flitting to and fro from Japan I was flitting around the country, setting up branches and employing people. And meanwhile, I back home. Our third child had been born. I had three little children at home, and I was working horrendous seven-day weeks.
[00:04:16] Uh, if I could have that all over again, I’d give myself one very special piece of advice. And that would be to create a better mix of home life and work life. Get some balance in there. And, uh, as it turned out, uh, a few years after that, about four or five years after that, I actually did advise myself that.
[00:04:36] Because one of my kids, my oldest son came home from school and he said, Dad, I’ve been selected to play in the junior cricket team at school. Did you ever play cricket? Oh, okay. Now that hit me right in the heart. That was like a day in my heart because in my school years, I had lived for sport, and I’d actually played representative sport and had to forgo that.
[00:04:58] I had to forsake those opportunities to cut a living. To get out in the workforce. And so, I had not play cricket between the age of 17 and 34 as it turns out. So, I got him involved in cricket. I got his little brother involved in cricket. I decided to make a comeback with the local club in the local competition.
[00:05:20] My wife became the team’s scorer. She, by the way, was coaching netball and then getting my daughter involved in representative netball at the same time. So, it made an obligation for me to free up weekends. Weekends was strictly for family.
[00:05:35] I took that decision a few years too late. I should have done it when I was 30.
[00:05:40] Robert Hossary: But Keith, You did take it, you did take it a lot sooner than a lot of people. And I think that’s great advice that, you know, having worked overseas and missed an enormous part of my children growing up, I, I empathize.
[00:05:54] I wish that I had told myself that. That’s a very important lesson. Well, that’s brilliant advice.
[00:06:00] Lesson 1. The Expression “Knowledge Is Power” Is Now Redundant …” Knowhow” is now the power!
[00:06:00] Robert Hossary: Let’s move on to your 10 lessons. We’ll start with lesson number one. Now, I was excited when I saw this because you, you and I share. a passion for this particular lesson. And I won’t say anymore. I’ll just read the lesson and let you explain it because I’m all giddy with, happiness that someone else shares the same thought.
[00:06:21] So, lesson number one, the expression knowledge is, power is now redundant. Knowhow is now the power. Talk to me about that Keith.
[00:06:31] Keith Rowe: Well, yes, it is very much a hobby horse of mine, and it always has been. And knowledge is a funny thing. It’s important to have it, not necessarily to use it, but it’s important to have it because it creates an aura.
[00:06:43] People see a knowledgeable person through their attitude. It reflects in their attitude, their level of enthusiasm, the level of confidence. And a person possessing knowledge just has that natural ability to mesmerize people. They’re wondering how much more could this person possibly know? But it’s subject to dreadful misuse and I will get to that.
[00:07:06] Having the knowledge is the important thing. But people don’t want to be told what they already know, and they certainly don’t want to be told what they don’t want to be told. So, the discipline of using the knowledge effectively is very important.
[00:07:21] Now we don’t have to go back very far to where that was the vouge expression knowledge is power. Because a knowledgeable person, we regarded as that person who knew everything, you know, they knew stuff. Then along came the internet round about the nineties. Along came the online environment, knowledge became more accessible. Suddenly that knowledgeable person wasn’t the person who knew everything that that person who knew how to find out stuff.
[00:07:47] So the definition tended to change. Welcome to the modern era, a school age, a preschool age. Children can access the world of knowledge, the encyclopedia of the world in microseconds, as long as they’ve got a search engine and an internet connection. So, it’s gone through another morphing phase. So, we’ve got to the point now where we treat knowledge is something you just get.
[00:08:11] It will. But if you want knowledge, you just grab it. You search on your computer, you thumb your phone, you thumb your, you do what you like, and you’ve got the knowledge. So, it’s an at will thing. So, knowledge itself is not the power anymore. But what has remained is the need to use it intelligently, to use it thoughtfully and tactfully because knowledge is only relevant to how much knowledge the other person has.
[00:08:38] So you have to respectively, assume that the other person may or may not know more than you do. So, what comes back, we’ll talk about this a little later, I’m sure we’re going to talk about communication and the need feedback, but at this stage, it’s about having the respect to do that. And I’ve got a very good story to tell here.
[00:08:56] Robert Hossary: Please, please.
[00:08:58] Keith Rowe: Across the world, and it comes back to cricket, funnily enough, because across the sporting world, one of the most revered commentators in all of the cricket playing nations, we’re talking from England to middle Asia, India, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Pakistan, across to the West Indies, down to Australian New Zealand.
[00:09:15] The most revered commentator that ever lived was a guy called Richie Benno who died just a few years ago. Richie was a former captain of the Australian cricketer team, the national side, and in his television commentary post, he surrounded himself with knowledgeable cricketers, most of whom had already in their past been skippers of the national sides and the fatherly advice that he gave every single one of them when he welcomed them to the commentary booth was simply this.
[00:09:46] This is television, this is not radio. Don’t let that microphone seduce you into thinking you have to describe everything that’s going on. Don’t bother telling people what they can already see or what they probably already know. And the most important thing you need to learn about being in this commentary box is the value of silence.
[00:10:08] And, you know, that was incredible advice to be giving these people, because generally they wanted to just pontificate about their knowledge of cricket and bore the socks off the listeners. So that was a lesson I got from Richie Benno.
[00:10:24] Robert Hossary: Well, let me, let me just interrupt and ask you, how did you get to understand that it’s the knowhow, it’s the use of that knowledge.
[00:10:35] Keith Rowe: Yeah. Look, it came about always in my In-line assignments in management. I was always keen on training and a lot of it actually conducted myself.
[00:10:44] But one of the things that you tend to judge this in a commercial sense, uh, the word competence sort of wraps it up. You judge, you judge an evaluate on competence. And competence is, is kind of like a ladder of learning.
[00:10:57] If you can imagine a ladder that’s got four rungs and on the bottom one you’ve got this person who’s just starting out, right? They’re the unconscious incompetent. They don’t even know what they don’t even know, and they’re quite oblivious to it. They take on a bit of training, they advance a little bit, they’ll step up the next rung where they become the conscious incompetent.
[00:11:19] They still don’t know what they’re talking about, but they’re now conscious of the fact that they’ve got a lot more to learn. So, they dedicate themselves to it and they move up the ladder. They then become the conscious competent. They’re now competent. They know what they’re doing, but they’re conscious of having to think about it.
[00:11:36] They’re now at that stage. They know what they know, they know it’s probably enough, but they have to consciously think about how they apply it so they’re not at the top level of competence yet. Step up the next one, and they become the unconscious competent. But in other words, what’s happening now is they don’t have to think about it anymore.
[00:11:54] It’s all happening automatically. They’re totally confident. They have the, the confidence and the enthusiasm. They’re at the top rung of the ladder.
[00:12:01] So I guess you’ve got to have the knowledge to attain the level. But you’ve got to have the knowhow to retain it.
[00:12:09] Robert Hossary: I love that.
[00:12:09] Keith Rowe: To stay there.
[00:12:11] So having the knowledge to get there, having the knowhow to stay there, it’s,
[00:12:16] Robert Hossary: that’s brilliant.
[00:12:17] Keith Rowe: And I used that in, in training.
[00:12:19] Robert Hossary: Yeah, no, I, I love that, Keith, that is a brilliant explanation. and I will repeat it. You’ve got to have the knowledge to get there. You’ve got to have the knowhow to stay there.
[00:12:30] Love it. Think it’s brilliant.
[00:12:32] Lesson 2. EQ Trumps IQ Every Time!
[00:12:32] Robert Hossary: But let’s move on to lesson number two. EQ trumps IQ every time. So emotional quotient trump’s intelligence quotient every time. Tell me your story behind that.
[00:12:46] Keith Rowe: Well, well, basically we’ve talked about knowledge, so we’re talking if you expand that and, and involve the knowhow, you talk about the cognitive ability now to apply the knowledge, to apply reason to it, to apply logic to it, to work out stuff.
[00:13:01] And it’s terribly technical. It’s almost mathematical. And if you do an IQ test, what are you faced with? You talk about numeric sequences and stuff like that. So, it’s all relating. We don’t want to get into this left and right side of the brain thing, but this is where it’s all working on one side of the brain.
[00:13:18] It’s all on the reasoning and logical side of the brain. And that to me is, is what IQ is all about. And if a person has got a reasonable IQ, then they will be seen as being a knowledgeable sort of person. But the real value of knowledge is to have that emotional intelligence because without being philosophical about it, you know, we’re on this planet with nowhere the reason but to get on all those other people are on this planet.
[00:13:42] We’re born one day we die. What sort of legacy do we have? Some people will set records, some will make music, some will write books, some will lead behind legendary performance, accomplishments and so on. Most of us, however, the only legacy we will lead behind is the thought that for God’s sake, we mixed with all these people.
[00:14:01] We treated them fairly and equally; we helped them wherever we could. We made some sort of a contribution and if I want anything on my damn tombstone, that’s what I’d like to see written there. So, it’s how we relate to the other people. So, if we can use the knowledge that we do have, not in a smart alec format, but in a persuasive way that helps other people, that’s when emotional intelligence cuts in.
[00:14:23] The best way I’ve seen it portrayed is. Like a pyramid, a triangle. The pyramid of human understanding. I’ve seen it called where the base level of the pyramid is getting to know yourself, know where you come from and the way you think. Step up a notch to the second layer in the pyramid. It’s understanding that other person, getting the feedback and having the awareness to know what that other person is thinking and where they’re coming from.
[00:14:48] And when you can tie those two together, you will hit that peak of that pyramid, which is the magic empathy. That’s only then that you’re exhibiting emotional intelligence. And the model that Goldman came up with many, many years ago, I think it was back in the 1920s, describes it pretty much that way.
[00:15:06] A guy who ultimately became a friend of mine in the US, Tony Alexandra once coined the phrase, he said, Uh, I try to live my life by the golden rule.
[00:15:16] You know, do one unto others as you would have them do unto you. He said, but it doesn’t work in in conversations and it doesn’t work in selling and it doesn’t work in debating, and it doesn’t work in negotiating because the person doesn’t want to be done unto. As you want to be done unto, they want to be done unto, unto as they want to be done unto.
[00:15:35] Robert Hossary: Oh my God, this is like talking to myself here. Keep going. I love this.
[00:15:40] Keith Rowe: Well, we do have matching haircuts, so on, so maybe it is just a mirror on looking at? Or
[00:15:45] Robert Hossary: it could be Keith. It could be, And this is for, for anyone watching this on YouTube, I think you’ll get a laugh out of it for our, uh, listening audience. Um, watch it on YouTube.
[00:15:59] Keith Rowe: Well, Brothers In Arms.
[00:16:01] If you look at how this has been handled, this, this whole issue of emotional intelligence over the years, way back, I think it was back in the century, started to go with some work on, on personality styles, but it wasn’t until Carl or Jung, depending on where you come from and how you pronounce names. In about the 1920s, he did some serious stuff on personality style and like most other ways of understanding human characteristics.
[00:16:29] Two vectors were used when they cross, they form four quadrants, and that allowed him to compartmentalize styles. Now, the most recent studies have dealt with the only observable one, and that is behavioural style. So, I want to know something about a person’s personality.
[00:16:47] Yes, you can duck online and get a, a rudimentary critique of your personality by ticking a few boxes or choice questions. But to do it properly, you would need a clinician to work on it and conduct a serious survey. If you are conversing with somebody or selling with to somebody or negotiating with somebody, you can’t say, Look, stop here.
[00:17:06] I want to send you off to the local university. I want you to do a personality study, and when you get the results or all the assimilations and everything, bring it back here and I’ll know how to talk to you. So obviously that can’t be done so. Did anybody manage to come up with an observable way of, of understanding particularly behavioural style?
[00:17:27] Because that’s the one thing that people do have a dominant style in how they behave. And you’ve probably heard of the disc system, D I S C, which is the most common of all the formats and dominance, inducement, you know, and, uh, submission, compliance, blah, blah, blah. I came across a different version of that.
[00:17:46] It was called the social style grid back in the seventies, and it was done by a couple of us, uh, professors, David Merrill and Roger Reed, and they came up with, uh, a way to measure assertiveness and responsiveness. That more assertive person is one who will sort of lean forward in conversation and fit their opinion more readily.
[00:18:05] The less assertive is the one that hangs back a bit reserved almost aloof. Then the vertical line you’ve got. A totally different thing. Responsiveness. The responsive person is the person who’s emotionally involved. The people issues they cry at sad movies, whereas the non-sociable person at the top there, the less responsive person is rather aloof and matter of fact about things.
[00:18:27] When you cross those, you get four quadrants and they define so accurately the characteristics of a, of an individual. So that study of behavioural style is something that has since been used. It’s been used to put together boards of directors for companies. It’s been used to put together, I guess marriages even, It’s been used to put together management teams and I’ve no doubt that it’s probably even avoiding wars somewhere.
[00:18:52] So behavioural style has become one, one of the most expressing ways of having emotional and intelligence and training it and having people understand it. And it’s. About getting individuals to be putting people in boxes. It’s about simply having them understand that we’re all different. We’re so unique, We’re absolutely unique people.
[00:19:14] And you must not assume that the other person is going to see things. Exactly. As, as you see them. They’re not going to regard it the same way you do. They’re not going to value it the same way you do. So, I use it in training, and we do the putting in boxes. Yes. But I, I always quantify the whole thing. I qualify the, the end result, the outcome as being.
[00:19:35] Don’t worry about the boxes. Just go into the conversation. Go into the negotiation. Go into the debate, appreciating that that person won’t necessarily receive the way you do. So never make that assumption. That is emotional intelligence. Yeah.
[00:19:49] Robert Hossary: And that is such an important lesson. assuming that someone sees a problem, an issue, a situation the same way you do. One is the height of arrogance and two is dumb. I mean, I will just straight out say it. It’s, it’s a ridiculous place to be. Because as you point out, we are all different. And that little anecdote about, the golden rule, treat others as you would have them treat you.
[00:20:19] I couldn’t agree more. We are all different. Not everyone wants to be treated the way you want to be treated, so think about that. What a brilliant lesson. What a brilliant lesson.
[00:20:29] Lesson 3. The New Business Opportunity…Customer Service
[00:20:29] Robert Hossary: Lesson number three, The new business opportunity customer service. Now hang on, Keith, We, we have customer service. What do you mean it’s a new business opportunity?
[00:20:42] Keith Rowe: Well, it’s new in the context that, Let’s start with the definition of customer service. Okay? On the one hand, you’ve got an expectation. The customer has an expectation. On the other hand, there’s a level of delivery against that expectation.
[00:20:57] If we exceed their expectation, we’ve got a satisfied customer. If we fail to reach that, to achieve that, we have a very dissatisfied customer. True. Now, it’s mathematical. It’s an equation. It’s a simultaneous equation. So, what that a lot of the big corporates have been doing in terms of customer service, they’ve determined that it’s much easier and cheaper to lower the customer’s expectation rather than investing, upping their delivery of service.
[00:21:23] Well, doesn’t
[00:21:25] Robert Hossary: hang on. Doesn’t that come from that old adage under promise and over deliver?
[00:21:30] Keith Rowe: Exactly. And that’s, that’s a good way to summarize it. You’ve just summarized everything I wanted to say for the next 35 minutes. So now I can cut this fairly short, Rob, because when, when you are looking at that, that customer service expectation, there’s some classic examples.
[00:21:44] Let’s start with the banks. Now I’m going to be a little facetious here, and I’m a little tongue in cheek, so don’t take it at face value straight away. I will summarize, but have a look at the banks there once was a thing called a bank teller. A lovely lady or gentleman who knew our children’s names, they counted out our money on the counter for us.
[00:22:04] My God, they even paid us some interest on our hard-earned savings. Look at us now. Along came the atm. We were happy to stand out in the rain in the queue, waiting for our turn to do the job ourselves, draw money which we owned, upon which we are earning no interest, and then even accept a transaction charge for being good enough to do it ourselves.
[00:22:25] That’s the banks right now. Fortunately, they have seen the light a little bit after the horror of all their branch closes and the uproar that it caused. They now seem to have a concierge at the door and they’re taking a different tack, but leave the banks around for a moment.
[00:22:40] Let’s go to the grocers. The supermarket there once was a thing called a grocer.
[00:22:44] They wore those lovely dust coats. They would select the goods off the shelf for us. They would put them into environmentally brown paper bags for us, and God help us. They even carried the car for us. My God, where’s the grocer gone? Now we go to the supermarket, we select a trolley. Somehow, they’ve programmed that trolley to take every direction except the one we want to go.
[00:23:05] And when we finally do get to the checkout, we’ve got to scan it ourselves. And if we don’t do it quite right, somebody will come up quite ill mannerly, never say pleased. The machine will say, I’m going to have to get an exasperated staff member over here to do this for you by the local things. So that happens.
[00:23:23] That’s something the tip of the iceberg. Next, we’re going to have radio technology, which will automatically read what’s in our trolley, automatically bill it as we walk past to our bank account, through our phone, and take it to another dimension. And I haven’t even started on the service station. I don’t know that any of your listeners are old enough to remember when you could pull up at a service station and the kindly lady or gentleman would come and fill the tank with fuel, check the oil, check the water, clean the wind screen, and then take you inside so you could pay for it.
[00:23:52] Robert Hossary: But what is, what’s the connection? Well, how is this a new business opportunity?
[00:23:58] Keith Rowe: Well, well, while this this is happening, The new opportunity arises where there are still some products other than the commodity level which need to be sold. Then people need to find the solution. They need to have a product recommended. Anything, medical, technical, mechanical things where you, you need to understand the solution and have an appropriate product allocated to it, but still room for selling.
[00:24:23] Now, within those industries where it hasn’t been commoditized, that’s a fantastic opportunity because most of the bigger players are downgrading their level of service. Downgrading the expectation. There’s a very easy opportunity to stand tall and be the one that lifts the level of service, and it can be done affordably.
[00:24:42] So a lot of my trainees have walked away from my session shaking the head saying, Look, this old guy’s not with it. This is how the world works. These days. They’ve come up with a new business model because they had to reduce costs and it’s all within their business plan and it’s working for them. This is all great.
[00:24:58] But then by the time we’re finished, most of them leave the room thinking, My God, I get back to my store or my workshop or my whatever. I think I can make an opportunity out of this because that big fella down the road is doing exactly what we just talked about.
[00:25:12] Robert Hossary: That’s an excellent observation. If you look at business today, It is all cookie cutter. A lot of companies are pretty much the same. Your, your eCommerce is pretty much the same platform everywhere.
[00:25:23] Keith Rowe: In our current environment, particularly the online environment, you’re constantly searching for a point of difference.
[00:25:30] Robert Hossary: Yeah.
[00:25:31] Keith Rowe: In a technical type other than commodity type sale. That obvious point of difference is personal intervention, personal head-to-head, face to face, voice to voice help.
[00:25:43] And that’s a point of difference. And quite often it’s the only point of difference. It becomes impossible to differentiate some of these deals because the product looks the same. Yeah. They even use the same photograph in their online libraries. I mean, there’s no point of difference whatsoever. So, what happens by default price becomes the only point of difference, and all that does is demolish the profitability of both the branded supplier and the retailer.
[00:26:10] I’m not taking sides against the consumer here because the downward spiral of pricing is obviously good for the consumer, but it decimates the business model. It decimates all the, the planning of the business model. Yeah. Yeah. That point of difference may be the only point of difference in the future.
[00:26:26] Robert Hossary: I hope that that resonates with our listener. I hope that that point is not lost, and I would recommend very strongly to pause this podcast, go back, and listen to lesson number three again so you can fully understand what Keith is saying. It is an opportunity.
[00:26:45] Lesson 4. Discrimination Versus Equality … Totally Different Things!
[00:26:45] Robert Hossary: Okay, well let’s move on to lesson number four because it can be contentious, but I think I understand what you’re saying here, so I’ll, I’ll let you explain it.
[00:26:57] So, lesson number four, discrimination versus equality. They’re totally different things.
[00:27:04] Keith Rowe: Yes, it’s going to be contentious. Let’s start with the whole issue of political correctness or as it as it’s called the, the PC offensive. Now the truest thing about that is the use of the word offensive because it is downright offensive because it’s been taken so much out of context.
[00:27:24] Because somewhere along the line, if you look at discrimination, the, the Oxford Collins Dictionary, the definition of the word is the differentiation between two or more things, between two or among more things. That’s, that’s all it is. That’s discrimination. But we’ve somehow got it in our mind that all discrimination is evil.
[00:27:45] And indeed, a lot of it is, and it’s got to be quashed. I’m, I’m off for that. It’s, it’s got to be absolutely quashed, but equality’s a different thing. Now we say, Oh, equality, we’re not born equal. We’re different shape, we’re different sizes. We have different colouring. Our color palette is completely different.
[00:28:03] Our hair color is different. You and I don’t have an issue with that because we haven’t got any. Our color of our eyes is different. The color of our race importantly is different. Our skin, our race, these are things to celebrate. The French say ‘vive la différence’. They’re to celebrate, not to denigrate. And yet what are we doing all the time?
[00:28:23] We we’re confusing sameness with equality. We’re saying we need to be the same. We don’t want to be the same. We’re not the same. So please let us be what we are and celebrate it. Don’t go insulting it. And the biggest issue with that is some of the terminology used. I’m sure a lot of it’s taken out of context because there’s certain words that in, in, in their own way are offensive.
[00:28:45] And I think you and I at some stage have discussed that aspect of it as well. But I just don’t like the fact that there seems to be some confusion between equality. We’re not born the same. We’re not supposed to be the equal. But humanitarian terms, generally humanitarian term, we need to be treated equally.
[00:29:04] That’s what this is all about. So, I’m all for equality, whether it be gender, race, color, size, shape, disability, you name it. We need to be treated fairly and we need to be treated equally.
[00:29:16] Robert Hossary: well, let me pick up on, on that. Maybe then it’s the use of the term equality. I mean, I’m with you with discrimination. Discrimination the, the pure meaning of the word is to discriminate, is to separate two different things. I understand that we have changed that terminology in society, and we’ll talk about that later. Maybe, maybe not, but the, the word equality, I think if we start using the word equity instead of equality, that might be a better solution because, you know, I come from a privileged background. I understand the privileges that, that I have, have been afforded in society, but people who haven’t come from that privileged base, they need more help to get to the same level. And that’s equity. Yeah. It doesn’t mean that they’re better, it doesn’t mean I’m better.
[00:30:10] Keith Rowe: Very good point. Equity is a good choice of words.
[00:30:14] Robert Hossary: We’re, we’re both equal because we’re both human, but we need to have an equitable society where everybody, This is my, own personal soapbox, so, if you’re going to write in, write in to me because it’s about, you know, this is my thoughts, but we need to have an equitable society that treats everyone according to their needs.
[00:30:34] Keith Rowe: look, you’re really touching one of my hobby horses now too, and that is the, again, without being too philosophical, we know the start of life. We damn sure know the end of life. Yes. We’re only really talking about the journey. If we can make that journey, Closer in equity for all of us.
[00:30:51] So at least there’s some opportunity drawing close to equality along the way. That’s going to be an enormous gain. But we’re so far from it.
[00:30:59] Robert Hossary: We are.
[00:31:00] Keith Rowe: But we’re disappointingly so far from that. And, uh, the disadvantaged, in many respects, even more disadvantaged than they had been in the past. But in some of the cases, gender, for example, we’d made progress.
[00:31:13] I mean, the glass ceiling is still there in, in certain area. We know all that sort of thing. But we are making some progress started with the suffragists over a hundred years ago, and it’s still gain momentum. So hopefully we’ll get over that one. But we’ve got bigger issues with spiritual belief and bigger issues with racial belief.
[00:31:30] So they need a lot of work.
[00:31:32] Robert Hossary: It does, and it’s a topic that we can discuss forever. I do want to move on, but I do want to touch on this one point, because you, you mentioned, Political correctness and how it’s being usurped by the discussion of discrimination.
[00:31:47] I do agree with some of that, because there are people who wilfully use terminology to profile, to do what they need to do to encourage that hatred and that rift and that, disintegration of society. But I will also say, I’ve come to realize very recently that the choice of words, and many of our speakers have said this, and I know that, Keith, that you would probably also agree with this, that there is power in the words you choose.
[00:32:15] Keith Rowe: Yes.
[00:32:16] Robert Hossary: There’s a lot of power in the words you choose. I remember as a young schoolboy, and we’re talking in the seventies here in Australia, the language we used is totally different to the language I would even think of using today. The jokes we told, I would never even, catch myself talking that way or telling those jokes.
[00:32:35] Course don’t, They were blue, but they were,
[00:32:38] Keith Rowe: they were insulting than of them.
[00:32:40] Robert Hossary: Very insulting, racially profiled.
[00:32:43] Keith Rowe: Yes.
[00:32:44] Robert Hossary: To different, ethnicities, different races, and it’s the removal of that language from the vocabulary that changes your mindset if you keep using the derogatory terms. If you keep using.
[00:32:56] I’ll give an example. I refer to indigenous people as indigenous people, First Nation people, Native Americans. I don’t refer to them by the, the common term that is being used that changes your thinking about these cultures.
[00:33:14] This is my opinion anyway, But that’s why when, when you said pc, that’s where I went. There are times when I believe that we should have some political correctness, but not to the, not to the extent where it, it’s gone mad.
[00:33:27] Keith Rowe: Some of it is, is touching on the absurd. Uh, we, we, we know that, but the phraseology, I’m pleased with the changes. I’m very, very pleased with the upgrading of the, of the use of the phraseology. But if I were to create a motto for, for everything that I stand for there, I would say integrate. And celebrate.
[00:33:47] Robert Hossary: Yeah.
[00:33:48] Keith Rowe: Rather than isolate and denigrate.
[00:33:51] Robert Hossary: Very nice.
[00:33:52] Keith Rowe: It’s almost that simple. And that’s a catchphrase I used in my latest book. And, and to me that encapsulates pretty much all the way I think about it.
[00:34:01] Robert Hossary: Just, just say that one more time. We’ll move on to the next lesson, but I want to leave this one with that saying.
[00:34:06] Keith Rowe: Integrate and celebrate rather than separate and denigrate.
[00:34:11] Robert Hossary: Fantastic. Absolutely Fantastic.
[00:34:14] Lesson 5. Be skilled at having Conversations
[00:34:14] Robert Hossary: Okay, Lesson number five. Be skilled at having conversations. Now, Keith, we all know how to have conversations.
[00:34:22] Why do we need to be skilled at it?
[00:34:24] Keith Rowe: Well, again, I’ve got to go back to basics. The communication model. Remember I said at some stage, no matter the complexity of the communication, at some stage in it, it gets down to one person delivering a message, another person receiving it. And if we want to know if it’s being received, correct, we’ve got to have some feedback, right?
[00:34:43] But we can avoid the need for feedback in the way we present conversations. And I, break them in two halves. The presentation skills, the outward-bound skills, and the receptive skills. And, and quite frankly, I think the receptive skills are more important, but with the outward-bound skills, I break it into what I call the threes verbal, vocal, and visual.
[00:35:05] So let’s just take a moment for each of those. Verbal skills are the words that we use, and I’m not talking about having a, an English school master vocabulary at, at, at will, Not at all. Because we want to be appropriately talking to people at an appropriate level.
[00:35:22] I’ll give you an example of this. A product manager who worked for me some years ago, he’s quite technically brilliant. He used, used to look after products like camcorder and in the days of video recorders, that type of equipment. And he was quite brilliant. But he had a lot of trouble with public speaking because in that role he was often, having to make presentations, talking to groups of people.
[00:35:42] And he had come from a, a fairly disadvantaged background, a rural background, a rather poor family. And probably during preschool years, he had picked up some habits, the wrong verb forms, for example. He would say things like, I come into the room, and I seen him there. He done it, so I give it to him. Right.
[00:36:02] So what using the wrong tense the wrong form of verbs and so on. And you could see when this was happening, you could see the audience absolutely be cringing. They were judging him. They weren’t judging him on his technical brilliance or his knowledge of, of the industry and the products that he was presenting. They were judging him purely; on the way he conducted his English. The way he expressed himself.
[00:36:24] Now we got together in one of the usual performance appraisal sessions, the annual salary review thing, and we talked quite openly about this. And he finished up writing down for all those action verbs to be, to give, to do and so on.
[00:36:38] He wrote down the correct verb forms, the correct tense. Today I do. Yesterday I did, I had done, and he carried around his pocket. Until he got it right, until it became instinctive. Now, that guy, I’m sure was still as brilliant as he ever was in the job that he does, but he’s probably not being unfairly judged for all the wrong reasons.
[00:37:00] Look, it’s not any particular strata of something. It’s just being compatible with your audience and not giving them an opportunity to judge you wrongly, because it affects your credibility and the whole way you do things. And the other thing is jargon. Now I work with geeks.
[00:37:16] I mean, most of my trainees are these brilliant technical guys who fall the pieces in front of a customer, mind you. But they, they’re absolutely brilliant. Technically. And jargon flows off the tongue. Everything’s bits and bytes, huh? And to the customer, it means absolute gobbledegook. They’ll be talking technical terms that they, they’re quite familiar with, but they don’t necessarily get it a hundred percent right. And some of their customers may well have a PhD in that discipline. They could get caught out very badly.
[00:37:47] So my advice to them is forget the jargon. Come up with case studies and, and, and friendly storylines to explain the meaning of things and get away from the technical terms. And on top of that, don’t use slang. There’s no need for profanity. The English language has got enough words in without having to swear.
[00:38:05] So just use a little bit of discipline there out with the jargon, out with the slang, out, with the profanity and in with the gracious use of the language. So that’s only the verbal. And we get to the vocal what about the vocal? We can change the whole mood of a conversation by accent tone, timing, even volume.
[00:38:27] You know, if we want to talk about something secretively, perhaps even intimately, we lower our voice. That’s got a lot of effect on somebody’s heart of hearing, isn’t it? So, the first rule is we’re not chasing the Shakespearean Tellus here. We’re not on the stage performing. Make sure people can hear you, make sure points aren’t getting lost because you’re not enunciating them loudly enough.
[00:38:50] The other thing is talking too quickly unless you work at McDonald’s and a young teenager. Then don’t come up with a hundred. It’s, it’s a critical issue. And, and if we get to talk on receptive skills, I talk about that as feature of listening because if we get excited about something, we invariably talk faster, and we’ll lose the person we’re trying to talk with.
[00:39:14] It’s far better to have a, a moderated tone, a moderated speed, and keep it consistent and then you’ll be understood.
[00:39:22] The most important ones yet to come do, do you know what its, the most important word in any language is the pause and the secret to a pause. If you are a public speaker or, mc or whatever you’re doing, the pause is the most valuable tool you’ll ever have.
[00:39:40] Because a pause will always do two things. One that captures the attention. People think, Oh my God, I may have missed something. The silence gets it. I may have missed something. Or alternatively, Oh boy, I think there’s something important coming up. So, they, they’re recognizing that that pause is causing that.
[00:39:57] Did I miss something or am I about to miss something? And it attracts attention. The greatest attention getter in conversational mode is the pause. It’s the most, valuable word in the language.
[00:40:06] Robert Hossary: That’s great and, I would strongly advise anybody listening to start honing those conversational skills.
[00:40:14] Affiliate Break
[00:40:14] Robert Hossary: Well, we’ll take a quick break at the moment. we’d like to thank our affiliate partner Audible. Audible is an amazing way to consume 10 lessons learned books and other podcasts, allowing you to build a library of knowledge all in one place. You can start your free 30-day years. That’s right, I said Free 30-day trial by going to audibletrial.com/10lessonslearned. you’ll gain access to the works of many of our guests, and you’ll be able to listen to our podcast and much more. With Audible, you can listen to new and favourite authors, even authors like Keith Rowe, while at home or on the go. Once again, that’s audibletrial.com/10lessons learned or lowercase for a free 30-day trial, and the link will be in the show notes.
[00:41:09] Lesson 6. Don’t just talk. Question, Listen, and Watch!
[00:41:09] Robert Hossary: So, today’s guest is Keith Row, And we’ll get back to Keith with lesson number six. Keith, lesson number six says, Don’t just talk question, listen, and watch. We’ve had a lot of guests who talk about the importance of listening, but I’m a little taken aback with question and watch, when you throw that into the listening mix, doesn’t that not take away from listening?
[00:41:38] Keith Rowe: No. Well, no, it doesn’t because the question will, will attract, uh, what you have to listen to and the, the question will define what you need to, to be listening to. But let’s, let’s take it back. Again, you’ve got to give back to that feedback thing.
[00:41:51] But as far as questioning skills are concerned, I was taken aback when I first started doing serious training in this mainly selling oriented training. But even so, when you talk questioning skills, I, I, you set the trainees down and I would say, Look, turn to your partner next to you and ask them as many questions as you can, which they cannot answer with a simple yes or no answer.
[00:42:17] And they stutter, and they stammer, and they might get to one or two until I introduce something, which ironically comes from an old English author, Rudyard Kipling. I usually get this in the wrong order, but he said something like, once I kept six worldly men, they taught me all I knew their names were what, and when and where, and why, and how, and who.
[00:42:38] Any question that you ask, starting with one of those words cannot be reasonably answered with the yes one no. And if you’re throw in which it actually makes seventh, another W words. So, when you have the W words, and once I do that, they will turn to their partner and almost indefinitely be asking questions that can’t be answered with this, or no.
[00:42:58] These are what we call open questions. And the open questions are designed to attract information, to get responsive, valuable information, and to, I guess, promote the continuity in the conversation. So, when we do want to get a response, yes or no, we use a direct question, don’t we? That’s how you. Isn’t it Right?
[00:43:18] And they’re the active verbs like is does at time. So having the ability to ask those open questions to get information, then the ability to dovetail at the right time, the right place, you know, the conversation, the direct question to get a response. The feedback you want is the true art of conducting a conversation.
[00:43:37] The true art, as you would know of conducting an interview as well. So that really is the whole thing with questioning. And there are certain types of questions which are absolutely invaluable. They say you shouldn’t answer a question with a question. That’s what politicians do. But it’s not. So, answering the question with a question is a terrific way of taking a particular topic and putting it to bed and then getting on with the rest of the conversation.
[00:44:06] So there are techniques in there, and I’ve got at least half a dozen follow ups of mine that are a type of question that will allow you to steer the conversation in a non-manipulative way, and you can use those techniques. Listen to,
[00:44:21] Robert Hossary: I’ll listen in a minute. I understand the question. Why do I need to watch?
[00:44:26] Keith Rowe: Well, the ultimate lie detector? What happens within the, the, the body is that the subconscious brain, apart from control of all our motor schools and so on, it controls pretty much everything that we do. Now, Rob, I’ll ask you now, for example, To cross your arms. You probably can’t see something but cross your arms. Most right handers would do that.
[00:44:48] With the right hand over the left, now I’m going to ask you to uncross them and cross them the other way around. And some people can’t even do it. They got to think, How the hell do I do that? No,
[00:44:57] Robert Hossary: that’s exactly the same. No, Yeah, I would have to, Yeah, I got it. I got it. No, I got
[00:45:02] Keith Rowe: it. You achieve that. The very next time you go cross your arms, you’ll do it the same old way because your subconscious brain is programmed to do all that, and your conscious brain cannot control it.
[00:45:15] So, Body length will give out signs that reflect the true response that you have. It is a virtual lie detector and there have been some brilliant books written. I one by an Australian guy, Allen Pease is quite famous, his work on body language. But once I use this in the training sessions and I get involved in some of things like territory, space, eye contact, all that sort of thing, once they experience it, they say, My God, I can’t believe, like I’ve been living in an invisible world.
[00:45:43] Why haven’t I seen all these things happening? And quite often you can read an entire conversation without even, uh, speaking. so, you cannot totally master those hidden forces within body language.
[00:45:56] Robert Hossary: Ok.
[00:45:56] Keith Rowe: It’s a lie detector.
[00:45:58] Robert Hossary: It’s a lie detector and it actually is, if you stop and think about it.
[00:46:03] that was less than number six. And I think very valuable and definitely skills that you need to learn and practice and hone. Let’s move on to lesson.
[00:46:13] Keith Rowe: No, just before we do on, sorry. Just one thing that I think can’t be, and that is hearing versus listening. Now, hearing is a biological thing.
[00:46:24] The truck goes past whether you want to hear it or not, you hear it, the body hears it. Your hearing system, if it works and you don’t have a hearing, disability, it hears it. Listening, however, is a skill that can be learned. And the reason for this is that when we talk, we talk at something around 150 words a minute.
[00:46:42] Our brain is capable of taking in speech. And processing it at up to 700 words a minute. So, there’s a massive void to fill, and that leads to boredom and lack of attention. We also have a, a window of attention of about 45 seconds. And if it’s not stimulated, we die at boredom and we stop listening. So, the differentiation means that we have to concentrate on our listening, and there’s a set of listening skills.
[00:47:07] Everything about not interrupting everything, about maintaining the eye contact, all those positives that you should do to become a good listener and being a bad listener can actually be quite offensive to whoever you were talking with. And I’ll just give one example because I don’t want to string this out, but one example is what I call pencil listening.
[00:47:26] You’re talking with somebody and suddenly the eye contact goes, they start writing on a bit of paper or tapping on a tablet. And you are trying to talk to them. You’re trying to tell them something and they’re completely, they’re not even maintaining eye contact and that’s very offensive. After a while, you would actually stop talking to me.
[00:47:44] Stop giving them information because you’re too offended by it. When it’s so simple that if I said, Rob, these are important things you’re telling me. I really do need to make some notes. Do you mind if I just make a few notes while you describe that for me? Once you seek their permission, you can do no evil, but unless you do that, it’s just plain affronting.
[00:48:04] And that’s just one example of positive listening that a lot of people just simply aren’t aware of. There are a number of little secrets to good listening like that.
[00:48:13] Lesson 7. Persuasion Is A Matter Of Style … Conviction Is A Matter Of Process!
[00:48:13] Robert Hossary: Absolutely brilliant. let’s go on lesson number seven. Persuasion is a matter of style.
[00:48:19] Conviction is a matter of process. Keith, over to you.
[00:48:24] Keith Rowe: Correct.
[00:48:25] No doubt in what you do. You’ve met many, many people. I’m sure that they have you hanging on every word. Sadly, I’m not one of them, but I’m sure you’ve come across many of them and you can’t help but wonder I’m, Oh, this person, I’m just hanging on their every word.
[00:48:38] What is it that they’re doing? Is it, do they have a degree of charm? Maybe. Maybe they, they’re blessed with a little bit of charm, and they’ve got that persuasive manner about them. They, they might have a, a good vocabulary and a wonderful style about them, and I call that persuasion. As opposed to conviction.
[00:48:54] Conviction is just a process. For example, if you want to convince somebody of something, I might for example, say I’ve got a good technique, which is called the fab technique. And Rob, it’s a terrific technique. Now that’s all I’ve said, Rob. It’s a terrific technique. You’ll then pause and say, Well, hang on.
[00:49:11] How I know that? Ho hum. You know, tell somebody who cares, right? But if I were to use a technique, a conviction technique that not only makes a claim or a promise like that, but supports it with a, a feature, then. Supports that with an advantage. What advantage does that give you? Then in turn, does that advantage give you a personal benefit?
[00:49:33] And if I string that together and make it, it’s just a simple sentence. It starts with the word. Because this is a great process because it will keep you convincing in that you will always offer the advantage. It will make you even more convincing because you’ll then convert that to a personal benefit.
[00:49:52] It will make you even more convincing if you add an example on it. For example, I’ve just done that sentence in that format that I was talking about, giving you a reason to take on board what I’m saying by taking it right out to a personal benefit to you and an even giving an example. Now that’s a very common conversational technique and it’s particularly pertinent to public speaking, where quite often you are up at a lectern.
[00:50:15] You’ve got a massive audience out there, and apart from trying to see their reactions, you can’t get feedback. This is a wonderful way to eliminate the need for feedback. You don’t make a point unless you take it to the nth degree. Now, in its basic form, it’s called the fab technique, but in it’s more sophisticated form, I call it the conviction thread.
[00:50:34] And it’s what I train a lot of the, the salespeople and managers to do. And that’s the process. So, you combine the two, that persuasive manner, you’ve got that use of language, that you have that ability to present, that you have, and you put it into a little train line of conviction. And the key to it are the linking words between, to convert it from a promise to a fact is the word because, and use the word, because you can use your own terminology in, in doing this, but the word because is the critical thing.
[00:51:02] Because such a common word because it’s used over and over again. And because it doesn’t offend anybody, because they hear it all the time. So, the word, because it’s not affronting because they hear it so often. People are used to hearing it repetitively, so it becomes the starting point.
[00:51:17] You don’t tell them something, but you want them to know unless you add because you give them the why factor as well as the how, which, when and so on. Give them the why factor.
[00:51:27] Robert Hossary: Yeah. in my sales cadet days, we were taught to listen to W I I FM
[00:51:35] Keith Rowe: what’s in it for me? That it exactly.
[00:51:39] Lesson 8. “Do You Think?” Versus “Do You Feel” … Very Different Connotations!
[00:51:39] Robert Hossary: Okay. Lesson number eight. Do you think versus, do you feel.
[00:51:47] Keith Rowe: They’re very different things, don’t you think? Or do you feel they’re the same? So let me just explain what I’m getting at here. This stems pretty much from a lot of my sales training material, but it’s a conversational thing. It applies to any damn thing at barbecue or picnic, wherever you’re, when you press for a decision, people know that they’ve got to make a decision.
[00:52:09] That’s a certain amount of stress involved in that. And if you apply it negatively, like using the word don’t, don’t you think that’s a good idea? Couple of things happen. First, they get their back up, they think, Well, he doesn’t think I believe it. They could think he thinks I’m an. idiot Why is he talking to me like that, don’t you think?
[00:52:26] Implying that I don’t know anything. So, if I were to come to you then and say, Well, do you feel that’s a good idea? I’m not asking you or pressing you for decision, I’m asking for you, for your opinion. Yeah. And people are more than happy to give you their opinion often, whether you want it or not. So, So if you’re trying to take, get a take on how a conversation’s going, a debate or a sale or whatever’s going on, a negotiation statement, you’re running.
[00:52:52] Get a feel on it. It’s actually got a terminology; it’s called a trial close. Not, not trying to close the sale. You’re trying to get feedback. You’re trying to get a feel for, feel for it. So that technique. Is so friendly and, and it will attract either a positive or negative. They’re not necessarily going to agree with you, but you’ll get the negative.
[00:53:11] You’ll even get an objection in its nice friendly form, and you can handle it without any, you know, antagonism going on. So that’s a conversational thing that I even taught my grandchildren. I’m not joking this is an everyday thing. This has got nothing to do with, with commerce or selling or negotiating.
[00:53:28] This is an everyday conversational thing. If you want to have a, an interactive conversation and get the appropriate response, use the word do use the word feel, Don’t use the word don’t, and don’t use the word think because pressing for a decision creates stress and creates unpleasantness. Asking for an opinion is simply friendly and it’s simply polite.
[00:53:52] It’s a style of in conversing.
[00:53:54] Robert Hossary: So rather than saying, what do you think?
[00:53:57] You say, how, how do you feel
[00:53:59] Keith Rowe: about that? How do you feel? So even if you don’t use the don and you say, What, what do you think? What do, Hang on, I got to think about this. But if you say, Well, what do you feel about that? It’s asking tell you my life story for God’s sake. Because it’s friendly asking in a favourable, friendly manner for my opinion.
[00:54:18] Certainly give it.
[00:54:20] Robert Hossary: See, our lessons come from everywhere. This is a very simple short lesson, but it’s so powerful.
[00:54:27] Keith Rowe: Oh yes. It’s, it is so powerful. It’s a life skill. It’s not a negotiating skill. It’s not a, it’s a life.
[00:54:35] Robert Hossary: All right.
[00:54:36] Lesson 9. There Is A Difference Between Leadership Versus Management
[00:54:36] Robert Hossary: Well,
[00:54:36] let’s move on to lesson number nine. and this is one that I’m not going to comment on because I, again, it’s like your first lesson.
[00:54:42] I totally agree with this. There is a difference between leadership versus management. Now, I know some of our audience might go, Yeah, I know, but I ask you, do you really know?
[00:54:56] Keith Rowe: Okay, well, let’s, let’s just break it down a little bit. The, the issue of leadership versus management. If you, if you’ve got an action plan, you, you know, commercial team, right?
[00:55:06] And the managers out running it, he’ll tell you the how I want it done and where I want it done and when I want to done, and what equipment to use. And, and he’s chasing an outcome. It doesn’t inspire you necessarily. It simply gives you a set of instructions that you need to follow. The difference between a manager doing that and the leader is simply this, the leader will explain why we are doing it.
[00:55:30] The secret is in the why, because it’s the why that inspires and motivates you to do it and to do it well. So, the secret there is in the why now, if you go back in time, we’ve, we’ve tried to characterize this, this leadership thing so many different ways. It’s embarrassing, but. X and Y. You remember the days, it’s called X, the autocratic and the Y was the Democratic.
[00:55:53] And then we went to a situational leadership where we decided we should adopt either a parent-to-parent relationship or a parent to child relationship. All these wonderful things came out of Harvard over the years trying to define what leadership was really all about. And to be quite honest, some of it was quite embarrassing.
[00:56:11] But I’ve got a very good case study in my own background because I did do a little stint in the military. I was a platoon commander, and I had a responsibility. Fortunately, it didn’t come to be not in an action environment. I didn’t go overseas, but I was certainly trained with the maintaining the life of these people, these 30 young soldiers.
[00:56:32] When you talk all autocratic leadership, we poo poo it. We say there’s no room for that. You know, we’ve got to have a meeting, got to get consensus. Japanese were masters at that. They’d always get a consensus before the decision. So, there was never a bad outcome at the end of it because they’d all agreed before and that was what they, I think, remember they called it Nemawashi.
[00:56:48] And that was the secret behind their brilliant production engineering. Involve everybody in making the decision then nobody can conflict with it when it’s done. So autocratic leadership, however you come under fire, you a platoon of soldiers, you suddenly come under fire. Do those soldiers lying in the mud really want you to call a meeting?
[00:57:09] Do they really want to put their two Bobs worth into the meeting and give their opinion? Of course not. They want you to stand up, bark orders, get the machine guns positioned correctly, get the fire returned, and protect their lives. If we were in a building together and they caught fire, we wouldn’t want somebody to say, Let’s have a meeting and we’ll determine what we’re going to do.
[00:57:28] You’d want somebody to stand up, pick up a chair, smash it through the plate glass window and say, Follow me people. That’s autocratic leadership. So, in times of immediacy, danger, desperation, and extreme need, autocratic leadership does have a place. The true leaders, the person who can put the two together, know exactly when it’s caused for an autocratic approach and when it caused for democratic approach.
[00:57:55] And in most commercial environments, the democratic is the way to go. There’s no question of it. Because there’s, there’s so many advantages to it, but too many people dismiss the autocratic style as being redundant. It’s not, There’s a, there are circumstances where it’s absolutely necessary. So those are the, the two styles that, that I’ve sort of got used to working with and differentiating.
[00:58:18] And a lot of people ask me about the difference, how do you see the autocratic style versus the democratic? And that’s pretty much how I explain it. Immediacy, danger, extreme need, threat. Whenever that is present, it calls for an autocratic approach. Somebody wants somebody to take the lead.
[00:58:36] Robert Hossary: Well, we spoke about, the different types of leadership, you mentioned management, but I want to make it very clear.
[00:58:44] Management is process driven. Management is a how to, leadership is why.
[00:58:52] Keith Rowe: Why? It’s all about the why. Yeah. All right. Well give the reason. The reason the why gives the inspiration and provides some motivation. Yeah. Yeah. Without doubt.
[00:59:02] Lesson 10. The Long-Term Challenges Of Preserving Relationships Are?
[00:59:02] Robert Hossary: Well,
[00:59:02] that leads us to the 10th and final lesson, and then I’ll have one more question for you.
[00:59:08] But the 10th and final lesson, the long-term challenges of preserving relationships are, I don’t know what they are, Keith, because I can’t say that I’ve had a long-term relationship. And what is it that you mean by long term?
[00:59:26] Keith Rowe: Well, this can be long term relationship in business. Your clients, long term clients can be a long marriage.
[00:59:33] And I’ve been, Not really,
[00:59:41] Huh? But, And ironically, it was in a business session that we actually strayed on. We almost turned it into a marriage counselling session because I wanted to talk about the, the viability of a business in this state. It’s retaining clients. Client retention is what business is really all about. Yeah. It’s the two measures, The essence of business.
[01:00:03] And we started to equate it, and I had mixed, a mixed group of trainees, ladies and men all mixed up, and we straight on to a marriage counselling session. They said, Well, does it equate to, you know, relationships of female male relationships or anything in between? Does it interpersonal relationships, does it equate to that?
[01:00:24] And I thought, well, let’s have a look at it because it goes through stages, doesn’t it? And we distilled out of all this, this round table discussion, three Ls, and I put them up on the whiteboard. How does it start? It starts with lust. What does it grow into? If you’re lucky, it grows into another L. Love, and that’s sustained for a long period of time.
[01:00:46] Eventually that wanes a little bit, you know, and that becomes loyalty. So, you’re morphing through three stages of the relationship. So, we broke that back down and we put that into the context of a client relationship. Now the lust is, lust in the personal relationship is not quite the same as your first day on a new job or your first interview with a new client.
[01:01:07] Certainly not, but there’s a degree of excitement there. There’s, there’s the newness and the excitement of it. So, there is still a lust phase. Once the relationship is formed, trust comes into it. A genuine deeper thing comes in, you call it love comes into it, and that can sustain over a long period of time.
[01:01:24] If it goes on long enough, you get to the point where it’s, it’s a bit like that competence thing. It’s almost automatic and it’s held together with loyalty. There’s such a degree of loyalty and trust that everything else is forsaken. So, if you get a problem with that relationship, and I. I, I’m no marriage council.
[01:01:41] So let’s keep it on the business level. If you’ve got an issue with that, you can have a look at what stage the relationship’s at and have a look at that L pallet and see which one of them might be deficient and apply that one. Do you need to put a bit more lust back in it? Do you need to re-energize it?
[01:01:57] Put some excitement back in it? Do you need to consolidate that, that trust in the relationship, the love component? Or have we just become a bit stale and we’re just relying now on the loyalty and maybe we’ve got to inject something else, and you can look at it, which L’s missing and put that l back in.
[01:02:13] So we came up with a reasonable form. It’s not ideal. It’s certainly
[01:02:18] Robert Hossary: No, no, I, I like it, Keith. But what dawns on me when I hear that, and I think it’s, a great way to look at relationships. And I’m just talking business relationships. I mean, I know it works everywhere, but let’s just keep it with business.
[01:02:32] I look at business relationships and I look at the, the situation we’re all in now, the so-called, quiet, quitting, great resignation, whatever the hell you want to call it. And it makes me think that maybe you’re missing an L because if we don’t get to loyalty, then there’s resentment that’s going to be built up, which could lead to loathing.
[01:02:54] Keith Rowe: Well, it could, it could be the one negative it, it really could be important things you were saying here. Rob, no, I I’m going to add that one low thing that puts a new, puts a negative connotation in that
[01:03:06] Robert Hossary: it, it does, and I don’t mean to do that, but I’m just taking what you’ve said and looking at the situation now, why are so many people leaving?
[01:03:15] So I’m looking at it from the context of, our society today.
[01:03:19] why would people leave their jobs? Why would they do that? So that, that’s where I, I’m getting the fourth L from, That’s where I’m getting loathing from. If they’re not looking after their relationship, by using your three Ls, maybe they’re causing that for, or maybe they’ve just got a bad leader or a bad manager.
[01:03:41] Keith Rowe: Well, another L is leadership, of course.
[01:03:44] Robert Hossary: Yeah.
[01:03:44] Keith Rowe: But invariably, if you go ferreting deeper in there, there’ll be a leadership issue. There’s absolutely no doubt there’ll be a leadership issue behind.
[01:03:53] So, uh, and, and we, we really don’t have, I guess, the time to go into a lot of the, the details of that leadership thing, but I do cover it in the book. No free commercials, but it is in great detail in the book. And if we put another L in, put two Ls in or put in loading, which requires leadership to take it to loyalty how’d that sound? Lust, love effective leadership, loyalty.
[01:04:17] We’ll put a fourth in.
[01:04:18] Robert Hossary: Love it.
[01:04:19] Keith Rowe: Thank you for that.
[01:04:19] Robert Hossary: Let’s, this final question to you, Keith, what have you unlearned?
[01:04:26] Keith Rowe: You know that unlearning is a lot more different difficult than learning, don’t you?
[01:04:30] Robert Hossary: That’s why we ask the question. Anything that you have unlearned is just as valuable as the lessons that you have learned.
[01:04:38] Keith Rowe: Well, there’s one thing that I, I might have.
[01:04:41] Possibly even unlearned it by now. But one thing that plagued me for a long time, I had this intrinsic belief that everything that you need to do must be rational. There must be a reason for it. There must be a rational reason to do it. Everything was determined by logic, had to be a reason.
[01:04:59] But what I’ve learned, particularly since I’ve become a professional lay about, since I’ve retired from the full-time workforce and started to realize that’s an enjoying life that doesn’t involve working, I’ve now come to the belief that perhaps I should unlearn that that belief is ill-founded. Because some of the most enjoyable things you will ever do in your life have no rhyme or reason or logic associated with them.
[01:05:21] Absolutely not. They’re done for the pure pleasure and enjoyment, not just of yourself, but the pure pleasure and enjoyment of others. And it doesn’t involve reason and it doesn’t involve logic. I think I’ve nearly unlearned it. Haven’t done it yet. So that’s what I really want to get rid of. Haven’t learned it completely.
[01:05:41] Robert Hossary: That’s a very interesting one, Keith. And, and it’s unique. We’ve never had that before. That is a very interesting one.
[01:05:48] Well, look, I, I want to leave the audience with, with this anecdote. Keith and I, worked together briefly in the eighties and when we developed this podcast.
[01:06:01] I had Keith in my mind because I remember being a young manager and Keith saying, you know, something to me, which today is, like a cliche, but I had never ever heard of this before. We’re sitting there, we’re having a discussion, and Keith says, Work smarter, not harder.
[01:06:23] And I just thought, this man, the guru, this man is, you know, is the sage of all sages because I’d never heard it. So, when we were putting this podcast together, that’s the anecdote that came to mind. That’s how I felt. And I’m sure that when we were discussing it, we said there’s a lot of lessons that people have that through experience, that young rising leaders have never heard of that don’t know, and that could change, the course of their career, the course of their life, or what have you.
[01:06:58] And I’ll tell you, Keith, it did change the way I started to think. It made me more strategic. It made me more aware. Of how to be a better business professional. So, I want to give you on air credit for being a catalyst for 10 lessons learned. So, from me to you, Thank you. Keith.
[01:07:22] Keith Rowe: Good. Very nice to hear.
[01:07:25] Robert Hossary: So, we’ll leave it at that, but before I sign off, what is it that Keith Rowe is doing? Where can we find your book? What’s happening? What’s it called?
[01:07:34] Keith Rowe: Okay. There is the book I coin, the, the word, it’s, Inter Personality, which is indicating interpersonal skills. The whole purpose of the book. It does adopt a lot of my earlier selling and negotiating material, but it’s, it’s aimed at quite a different audience.
[01:07:51] It’s all about conversational skill and it’s aimed at addressing the threat that we now face, that those skills are being lost because of the transition to online. And it’s been accelerated by Covid. My last meaningful book was released in 2019 just before the arrival of Covid, and along came Covid. We started working from home.
[01:08:11] We started shopping from home. The transition to online happened at a rate of knots, so I thought I had to do something else, but I thought this time I won’t just make it for the selling fraternity, the professional, uh, type publication. I make it for the wider community because I see lots of kids out there who need to,
[01:08:29] rack up a few miles with conversational skill and practice and so on. So that’s the purpose of the book. I’m, I’m trying to avert the threat of losing this wonderful thing we have called interpersonal skills.
[01:08:40] Robert Hossary: Yeah. No, I think it’s brilliant. I would advise all our listeners to definitely go and get a copy.
[01:08:47] It’s, it’s a great read. And with that, Mr. Keith Rowe, would like to thank you for being our guest today. And
[01:08:55] Keith Rowe: My pleasure.
[01:08:56] I really enjoyed our conversation and hopefully we can have another one about a few other topics later on.
[01:09:01] Well, thanks for the opportunity.
[01:09:03] Robert Hossary: It’s our pleasure. So, we’ll finish here today. You’ve been listening to 10 Lessons Learned. Our guest today has been Keith Rowe, sharing his 10 lessons that took him many years to learn. This episode is supported, as always, by the Professional Development Forum.
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