Thursday, December 14, 2017

5 ways to make sure the right people and ideas get to you!

February 19, 2013 by  
Filed under Featured Posts, Practice, Work

Searching for Gatekeepers


Every leader has gatekeepers – people who limit and control access. This is most understandable, as the leader cannot possibly respond to every request personally.

Who are these gatekeepers (or “handlers” as I now hear as the new, sexy title)? They are the assistants, deputies, receptionists, security, electronic filters on recruitment sites – may even be your spouse! These are the people who decide who you will interact with. They decide whose idea or proposal you will get to read.

Nothing wrong with that – it HAS to be that way – after all, you are very, very busy. But are your gatekeepers aligned to your strategy? Do they have the correct “filters”? In this crazy world of ours, you need to make sure that the right people have access to you. You need to be on the edge of what’s happening in the world – the edge of what’s new, what’s about to change, what’s about to have an impact on your business and your life. And the way to do this is to expose yourself to people “on the edge”. These are the people who you don’t typically see or meet with. They are the mavericks, the contrarians, the scruffy non-corporate types: the types that perhaps your gatekeepers are most likely to close the door on.

Think about whom you are meeting with this week. Is it the same “type” of people you typically meet with? Is there even one new thinker in the bunch? If not, find someone. How? Here are a few ideas:

  1. Go to the most hidden, so-called lowly place in your organization and talk to the people there. Listen. Really listen to what’s happening and what’s changing.
  2. Visit your clients – but not the CEO – check out wherever service is delivered and talk to the people there. They know what’s happening, because they work with it every day
  3. Take a walk to the nearest coffee shop. See who’s there hunched over their laptop. Start a conversation.
  4. And have a conversation with your gatekeepers – find out which requests they have declined on your behalf in the past week. And call or meet with one of them
  5. Find something different at the magazine stand. Are you an engineer? Read DANCE magazine. A creative director? Read POPULAR MECHANICS. A banker? Try YOGA JOURNAL. Why? Simply to open your mind to viewing the world differently


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  1. […] In my most recent blog, I share 5 ways to make sure that the right people and ideas get to you. Too often gatekeepers, whilst necessary, keep radical, on-the-edge ideas and people away from you, to the detriment of your organization. click HERE for post […]