AAMA Conference Attendees Hear Management Message from Keynote Speaker

At the American Architectural Manufacturers Association (AAMA) 2016 National Fall Conference, those present heard management lessons from keynote speaker Garrison Wynn. Wynn shared the ways in which top performers harness the power of their personal and organizational influence – stressing the importance of making those around feel heard.

“What do the most successful people do that make them so successful?” asks Wynn in his opening. “We’ll talk about leadership, communication and affecting change.”

Wynn’s advice centered around ways to work with difficult people, as well as the importance of taking responsibility for one’s own behavior. He also talked about how valuable the education of others is.

“Everyone knows something you don’t,” Wynn says.

Wynn shared how to build trust by listening carefully to others and empathizing with their needs.

“When someone feels heard, they feel trust in that moment,” Wynn says. “It’s a chemical brain response. It’s why people fall in love.”

It’s also why people stay in jobs, he added.

Working with those who are talented, but harder to manage, will help a company keep top talent, Wynn said.

“Those in the top 1 percent in our research were willing to work with difficult people,” says Wynn, adding that they were also able to take a look at their own actions. “The minute they’re willing to look at the roles they might play in someone else’s bad behavior, that animosity decreases. Take ownership for what you could be contributing to a situation. Address that person and talk things out with them. Ask how you can work with them better. Communicate. Do you want to be right or do you want to be effective?”

Taking this kind of responsibility can make a world of difference, said Wynn.

“We play a role in most of our issues and most people won’t even look at that,” he says. “It’s not easy to do. If problems are always about somebody else, it means you have no control over your destiny. You can change people, but only if you’re willing to change your behavior.”

Making those in the workplace feel heard and valued will go a long way toward retaining them and working better together, said Wynn. He also recommended framing changes to processes as additional information added to old processes rather than completely new ways of doing things for a smoother transition.

“Show how someone’s existing knowledge will help someone [work] a new way, and allow them to apply that knowledge,” Wynn says. “‘Brand new’ is scary. Similarities first, differences second.”

“Listening to and valuing the experience and wisdom of others will take anyone far,” Wynn concludes.

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