When you are going into a meeting to negotiate anything, to present a plan, anything like that, what is key to that? Most of us might think “telling them what I want and need, so I can get what I want and need” Yeah, that is part of it. The first thing you need to do is get into their head. Huh? I bet your thinking to yourself.
If you don’t get into their head even from a common sense point of view, you will be up stream with no paddle, looking quite the fool. For example next week I am going to be speaking to the Monsignor and the Music Director of our church, the Cathedral which is who we merged with in 2015, so a number of things have to be approved by them, including any liturgical music and bible study program and such. I put something together and sent it to them yesterday so they would have time to look it over, and I pointed out it is a springboard for us to use, to work from. When I wrote this I placed myself in their place and thought what are the key questions they are going to be thinking and most often the questions an entity is thinking are;
- How is this getting funded, and without burdening us?
- . Where is the talent, human resource etc… going to come from?
- How is all this going to get managed?
I made sure to address all of this as best I could in the plan. I also had to think like a Monsignor, like a Church Music Director, like someone running church operations. From their perspective, what is a church’s priority? Long term devout Catholic members, multiple generations of members, evangelization of the faith, The priority of the projects etc… has to come based on that, so since I have a Cantor ready to go and possibly a pianist/organist as well, that should be the first thing funded, and with having an origination ready to provide us with talent for choir and our monthly concert series, work withy us, provided we do things with solid planning, it will make sense to start with the cantor, pianist, then the other stuff. That is what I am proposing in my plan. What of the sponsors? Again, from their point of view what do you have ready for us to invest in? The cantor and pianist/organist are ready to go. When you are looking to get funded etc…, yes you should do what you dream of doing and the plan etc… needs to reflect that, but you also need to get into their head and think from their point of view and address any questions, concerns they are going to have, do your best to anticipate them, and address them in your plan or at any meeting ahead of time. Be not afraid, pursue your dreams, and try to see from the other side of the meeting table what you need to address from their point of view ahead of time and find a way to address it that you will be okay with, that wont compromise your and your partner/colleague’s dream, vision. Ask the Holy Spirit to guide you.