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How to talk to management

October 5, 2011


Being the Alpha geek doesn’t necessarily mean you will thrive outside of your own discipline. The best IT managers ditch the tech talk and speak human when presenting to other executives on the management team.

CIO spoke to Peter Wilson, the national president of the Australian Human Resources Institute and chairman of Yarra Valley Water Limited, and Angus Macalister, chief operating officer of the Australian Institute of Management (AIM) NSW and ACT, to put together 10 tips for talking human — how to speak to senior executives.

Wilson refers to the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator® (MBTI®) assessment in his interview, here is an excerpt: "I am afraid one of the presumptions that many people have is that everyone else thinks like them and wants to be treated like they want to be treated. That’s why many managers (especially those who deal with logic — ring any bells?) experience great frustration dealing with people whose personality types are at the other end of the spectrum to their own. Personality profiles help you to understand that it’s not just technological illiteracy that separates you from your peers," Wilson says. "They also have a different way of thinking to yours.”

“Good Myers Briggs workshops get into the reconciliation of viewpoints and strategies for dealing with different types of people. We have often found that people’s leadership and communication steps up when they have done these workshops."

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