Visibility Accelerator #3 - Be Responsive

Visibility Accelerator #3 – Be Responsive

Today, colleagues and information can reach you at any time of the day, in an endless number of ways, in milliseconds. It is estimated that over 6 billion mobile phone calls are made per day in the United States. Smartphones have created a world of socially acceptable stalking. You can be found at anytime and anywhere.

This ability to connect to you frequently and instantly highlights an interesting human behavior. The speed in which a colleague reaches you creates an identical expectation as to how long it will take you to respond. Similar to a fast-paced ping pong game, your colleagues expect a response as quickly as they got the ball to your side of the table.

“Responsiveness is the degree to which you get back to colleagues and foster progress.”

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Raise Your Visibility & Value

Raise Your Visibility & Value: Visibility Accelerator #3 – Be Responsive

Raise Your Visibility & Value highlights seven visibility accelerators. Our third visibility accelerator is “Be Responsive.” Learn how important it is for you to get back to your colleagues and foster progress.


Ed’s new book, Raise Your Visibility & Value: Uncover the Lost Art of Connecting on the Job is now available on Amazon and Barnes & Noble. Please check it out and share the word!

Ed Evarts - Raise Your Visibility & Value

Raise Your Visibility & Value: Ed Evarts On the Schmooze with Robbie Samuels

On the Schmooze is a podcast that features interviews with talented professionals from different fields. Listen for insights that will help you achieve the leadership position you’re seeking, build and sustain your professional network, and find the work/life balance that works best for you.
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Ed Evarts

Raise Your Visibility & Value: What You Will Experience When You Are in Job Transition

As the host of a weekly meeting of business professionals who are in transition, all of them will experience many of the same things during their time in transition. I would love to tell them the following things they are guaranteed to experience.
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Ed Evarts

Raise Your Visibility & Value: Know the Difference Between a Spike and a Pattern

After working in large corporations for twenty years and providing leadership coaching for ten years, I have come to a conclusion that virtually every organizational leader needs coaching at some point in his/her career.

This is not speculation – this is evidence that I have accumulated through my own experiences and the experiences of my clients. Whether my client is new or experiencing a change to his/her role, building a new relationship with his/her boss, or struggling is his/her role, all of them need a coach.
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Ed Evarts

Raise Your Visibility & Value: Play the Hand You Have Been Dealt

I am working with a client who does not like the relationship she has with her boss. Not having a great relationship with your boss is a very common experience and this is important because the most important relationship you have in your workplace is with your boss.

In many ways, your work experience is like a poker hand. In a poker game, you randomly get a hand of cards, whether you like them or not. In the work environment, you get a work experience, whether you like it or not. Similar to a poker hand, you have three options to change your work environment:

  • Fold. Make a decision that this is not the place for you and you cannot make your work experience any better. Fold and move on.
  • Bluff. Make a decision that you want to stay, yet you are going to use valuable energy to make your work environment appear to be better than it is.
  • Act. Make a decision that you want to stay and you need to take action to improve your work environment.

Some of you will decide to fold. You believe that your work environment cannot get better and you prefer to put your energy in a new workplace. Some of you are bluffers. I don’t like this strategy as you are avoiding the inevitable. It may feel good short-term, yet bluffing takes too much energy and bluffing will fail long-term. When I work with clients, we work on taking action. We identify conversations you can have and next steps you might take in order to improve your work environment. This is tough, yet, if you want to take action to improve your work environment, it is worth the effort.

Changing your work environment for the better is a great way to add value to your organization. Not only is your work experience better, it is better for many others.

Beating Responsiveness Hurdle #3

What is the responsiveness hurdle #3?

I do not feel I have time to get back to everyone.

What can you do?

– Schedule some daily time on your calendar dedicated to returning phone calls and email.

– Ask your colleagues by when they needs an answer. Often times, it is not as quickly as you might think.

– Read the Harvard Business Review article, Manage Your Energy, Not Your Time, by Tony Schwartz and Catherine McCarthy (October 2007)

Beating Responsiveness Hurdle #2

What is the responsiveness hurdle #2?

I do not provide colleagues an update when my efforts to respond to them is taking longer than expected.

What can you do?

– Call your colleagues as soon as possible to discuss a new deadline.

– Leave your colleagues a message if you are unable to connect with them live, to ensure she has this information as early as possible.

– Consider alternatives to meeting the deadline that may include the assistance of other colleagues.

Beating Responsiveness Hurdle #1

What is the responsiveness hurdle #1?

I do not respond quickly to colleagues who outreach to me for help.

What can you do?

– Create a “first in, first out” log to ensure you get back to your colleagues faster and in the order of their outreaches to you.

– Respond quickly to your colleagues to let them know that you are working on his request and your anticipated day of completion. By setting expectations, you eliminate unnecessary follow-up emails and phone calls.

– Investigate if your e-mail management system allows you to color code emails from certain colleagues. This way, you can prioritize your responses.
Work to respond to voicemails and emails within twenty-four hours.

– Update your voice mail and email auto responder to reflect when you will be delayed in your response time. Upon realizing you are not available, some colleagues may seek their answer elsewhere, reducing your workload.

– Consider sending an email in response to a voicemail. While human interaction is always preferable, a quick acknowledgement is better than no acknowledgement.