[Part I of II]
As individuals move higher in an organization, two phenomena occur. The first is the belief that they are pretty good communicators. The top person in an organization usually assumes that he or she is the best communicator of all (that’s why he or she is at the top). The second is that their skin gets thinner; meaning, of course, that fools are less readily suffered the more senior an individual tends to get. Avoid using the word training with senior people. They don’t believe they need any. Always use the word coaching. Senior people know they can always use some coaching.This advice also goes for senior staff people.
There are two techniques I use to get to the busy boss:
Catch Him or Her Doing Something Right or Wrong
Routinely begin videotaping and audio taping presentations by very senior people. It doesn’t matter what the presentation is about; you need the videotape. Analyze the presentations for things the executive or manager did that you like and things that he or she could improve on. Then assemble clips of video or audio with examples of something he or she did that you really like and something that you can make one or two constructive suggestions about to improve.