Professional Development

How NLP (Neuro Linguistic Programming) can help your business

A few years ago we undertook a short course given by Rogen Si, called Breakthrough to Excellence. It went over the course of about 6 months, as the occasional one day seminar and was intended to leave its participants challenging their beliefs, reframing their perspectives and using winning behaviours to better their performance – in work and in life.

Initially some of the participants, notably those from a technical or science background who like absolutes, were skeptical about how well these techniques would work, but 6 months in and everyone had bought into it. Developed in the 1970s by Richard Badler and John Grinder, NLP has been used in everything from phobias, depression and learning disorders. Some hypnotherapists have also begun using it – even Paul McKenna.

There’s a key to how it works in the name: – Neuro: “to do with the brain and how it works” – Linguistic: “use of language” – Programming: “Use language and behaviours to effectively re-wire your brain” Though NLP is looked upon by some as a pseudoscience, there are still some elements you should definitely use in your day to day professional life.

1. Adapting your message to your audience
By modifying how you articulate a particular message to the individual you are talking to, you’re not changing the message, just giving it to them in the form and style that the person appreciates. For instance, when dealing with most (not all) senior level execs, they’re likely to be a Direct style personality. This means they want the key facts: a summary of the issue, the solution you have produced, and the impact of various options.

By contrast, when dealing with an analytical person, they will want all the details: how did the issue occur, what are all the details of the issue, what are all the details of the solution and how does it impact everyone involved? They are less likely to want a single solution suggested, and more likely to want to make the decision themselves.

2. Reframing your perspective
You know when you lose a contract and have the initial disappointment set in? Don’t focus on that feeling. Focus on the constructive criticism and feedback that came from the client. What can you learn from it? It’s a failure and that means you have lots of things you can take from it and learn from it. Who ever learned anything from a success?

3. Emulate Success to be successful
When you’re not feeling very confident, look to those whom you admire, and who have done things professionally that you respect. Imagine what it’d be like to be in their shoes, how did they get where they are and how can you use the lessons they’ve learned to make your journey more successful?

4. Concentrate on the throw, not the catch
Concentrate on the throw and the catch will take care of itself. Or put another way, work through what you’re doing and make that the best you can give and the end result will take care of itself. Have you done any NLP or read any useful NLP related books? What were the best things you took from it?