Finding truth, the painful process

Stock image, St. George News

FEATURE — Find the pain, find the truth. Who gives you highly sought after straight answers? When you need to solve an issue or inspire a team, who do you trust to provide that uncommon and insightful perspective regarding those matters of high importance? The influence of such individuals is priceless.

Why is discovering truthful insight so difficult? Truth is not obscure. Finding solutions to problems is fairly simple, actually. But why is it seemingly so difficult? In many instances, it is because the people who search for remedy generally don’t actually want the truth. In reality, many lack the courage to face the truth.

Truth requires change. Fear is crippling to the feeble. As a way of protecting themselves, or remaining complacent, individuals who are adverse to change may attempt to ascertain nonthreatening information. In order to avoid undesired change, they may even seek suggestions from the ill informed.

Many people facing opportunities simply do not want to change. There have been discovered two patterns of people who face opportunity. Those who plot the advice they seek can be called shoppers. Those who mine for truth can be called diggers.

Shoppers browse for ideas until they hear thoughts matching their own, or they plot to create ideas matching their own. Diggers shovel and sift through much earthy opinion to find the nuggets of truth.

One way of finding truthful nuggets is to complete a due diligence cycle. Friends, family and associates, some having only limited experience, are often among those sought out for insight, due likely to trust and ease of access. The opinions of those closest to a person are either very accurate and thus seemingly painful or sugar-coated and eventually dangerous.

These ten steps are helpful in isolating truth and making informed decisions:

  1. Clearly state the question, concern or opportunity up front
  2. Identify 3-5 informed and market influential professionals to interview about the issue
  3. Take notes, a pen can greatly enhance one’s memory
  4. Compare findings with the information gleaned from other trusted relationships
  5. Utilize reports, numbers, surveys to provide additional information
  6. Weigh the relative pros and cons
  7. Discuss the details with those closest to the issue
  8. Make your decision
  9. Find a way to test the decision
  10. Remember, free advice is too expensive

True friends, family and loyal associates have the end result in mind. Many insightful and course-correcting perspectives can originate in those closest to us. They will typically disclose, to the best of their ability, the truth.

Be mindful that some sources of information will not disclose the brutal truths as they relate to you or your company because they may believe the truth to be unkind in certain circumstances.

In actuality, kindness and truth are traveling companions. Lead with individuals who define accurately the rough edges necessary to smoothing them out. Hold yourself and your team members accountable for the necessary changes and require due diligence in the process of that change. To grow, find the pain.

Written by Jeff Sherman for St. George Health and Wellness magazine and St. George News.

Sherman writes, speaks and trains regarding true leadership and conquering self. He believes a successful brand is much more than a logo or a product but the people who daily make things happen. Sherman specializes in talent development, business culture and interpersonal skills.

Sherman, the creator of ShermanSpeaks LLC, is a public speaker and consultant utilizing a relationship-building blueprint to drive fledgling companies and individuals to the next level. More information is available online.

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