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66.Embracing Change and Boosting Productivity:Insights from Alessandra Marini in the Digital Age

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Podcast with Alessandra Marini Part 3


in the digital age with leadership coach Alessandra Marini in Part 3 of the Podcast.
Gain insights into fostering trust, overcoming resistance to new technologies,
and creating a safe space for growth and innovation. Learn how to cultivate meaningful
relationships with team members, address job security concerns, and navigate
digital transformations with courage and transparency.

In Part 3 of the Podcast withAlessandra Marini, the discussion revolves around embracing change and managing
resistance when implementing new technologies like artificial intelligence.
Alessandra highlights the importance of building trust and cultivating strong
relationships with team members, emphasizing that leaders should not only show
care and support when they need something in return but consistently nurture
connections. She also stresses the significance of creating a safe environment
where employees feel secure in their roles during digital transformations,
addressing concerns about job security and redundancies. Alessandra encourages
leaders to be proactive, transparent, and courageous in communicating plans and
addressing potential layoffs, ensuring that team members understand the purpose
behind changes and how they can contribute to the company's success.

[00:00:00] Andrew Liew: So let's think about anotherinteresting question is as you mentioned artificial intelligence actually does
help to boost productivity and there will be a group of people like you said
that. They don't want to touch anything new and you mentioned about there's a
need for change management.

[00:00:18] Andrew Liew: How would you talk to thesepeople? How would you advise leaders to get people to be excited to learn new
technology especially ones that Bruce did? Boost their productivity in the
context where the person might be thinking, Hey if I use chat GPT in my job,
let's say with customer service or in administration, maybe the AI or the robot
will take away my job and I would have no job.

[00:00:44] Andrew Liew: And so I would don't want tocooperate. How would You Look at that. How would you help the leaders?

[00:00:49] Alessandra Marini: Yes. Wonderful question.Yes, I am helping right now a client through this. And I think that I would
like to highlight two points that are very [00:01:00]related among each other. The first one is despite the change with or without
the change, what is the relationship that I built with my employees?

[00:01:09] Alessandra Marini: Because if I want to builda relationship of trust, just when I need something in return their acceptance
to this change, this is not a very healthy way of constructing and building a
healthy relationship with your team members. So I would say as a leaders
cultivate your relationship with the team members in a very free way without
expecting anything in return.

[00:01:32] Alessandra Marini: This is the first point.Because actually what I see is that people or leaders, sometimes they are just,
okay. There's people do their, own job, et cetera, et cetera. I don't really
take care of them on a daily basis, but I'm going to provide care when I need
them. To do something differently or when I need to, yeah, when I need them to
do something in a, in, yeah, for my own interest or for the company's

[00:01:58] Alessandra Marini: So I would really [00:02:00] recommend to have a rituals with yourteam, just to have a chat to to understand what is going on in their lives or
what struggles do they have in their professional life as well. So this is
first point, and then, Safety and this trust level in your relationship with

[00:02:17] Alessandra Marini: I think that when you wantto improve productivity, it's also important to to make sure that people feel
safe in their job. And I'm not talking just as a coach, but as a, black belt
expert as well. Cause in for those who don't know, when you're a black belt,
you help companies to become more efficient and more effective.

[00:02:39] Alessandra Marini: And so we identify waste toget rid of I don't know, some useless tasks. And of course there are some
productivity gains to be found. Okay. So you need to be very clear about what
you are expecting from this. So if there are, if there will be some layoffs or
some people being redundant, [00:03:00] how doyou...

[00:03:01] Alessandra Marini: Take care of thatimmediately and do not just let it be a ghost in the conversation. It's like
having an elephant in the room. Okay. Everybody's thinking about this, but
nobody's going to to dare to talk about it, but then in the behaviors of the
team members, they, it will yeah, it will come up.

[00:03:21] Alessandra Marini: Okay. So take, beproactive. And say things like, okay with this improvement, for example, we
will need 0, 5 FTE FTE less in in the next few months. And also talk about the
plan that you have. So this 0. 5 or one FTE that is going to be redundant. This
is how we are going to use it in a very interesting and powerful way.

[00:03:46] Alessandra Marini: For example, we want to uplevel the, service relationship with our customer. And so this new resource
will be used or will be trained to do this. Because otherwise, of course, if I
don't feel [00:04:00] safe in a change, I don'twant to go in it. And even though maybe I'm forced to move towards this change,
I will do it.

[00:04:07] Alessandra Marini: But I will either try tosabotage it, or I will do the very minimum. To, do it and it's not beneficial
for the company. So what I would recommend to leaders and I will finish because
it's a very long answer is to be courageous because sometimes what I see is
people or managers that they hope that these questions don't arise, but they
will arise.

[00:04:31] Alessandra Marini: So be proactive because themore proactive you are, the less. So people will come at you in the least
convenient moment during the change.

[00:04:40] Andrew Liew: That's a very good advice. One ofthe things that I want to ask, as you mentioned, be courageous because in Asia
especially people from, we typically tend to run top down, like I'm the CEO,
there's a CHRO, CFO, CO, and then go on.

[00:04:52] Andrew Liew: And the way they always like todepict themselves is I'm a tough, benevolent guy. I [00:05:00]will like, like a tiger mom or tiger dad, or I will do something and I will
whack you with scolding or something like that and, so when they realize that,
and the kids are so afraid, they don't want to open up, and now the, parents
realize, oh my god the leaders realize that the subordinates of the followers,
are like suffering from autism don't even want to talk about things.

[00:05:21] Andrew Liew: Now they, want to be courageousto open up, like the leaders want to be courageous to open up to, to get their
feedback or their view. How, what kind of advice that you want them to think
about? So that they can think about it and then before they can engage a coach,
because I'm sure there's some kind of a level of expectation and homework that
they need to do before they get a coach.

[00:05:42] Andrew Liew: It's almost like a gym coach,right? Before you get me, you have to do enough cardio on your own and you come
and do some heavy lifting.

[00:05:50] Alessandra Marini: Absolutely. Yes. There issome level of vulnerability, of course, when you do coaching and you need to if
you [00:06:00] want to get out of, if you wantto, get something from this coaching or from a coaching, you need to, be
willing to To question your beliefs and your convictions and by opening up by
being more vulnerable and also by being able also to receive feedback.

[00:06:19] Alessandra Marini: This is key, what you weresaying. Of course there is some cultural differences when I coached someone
from India and from Brazil, from United States, from European countries more in
general. And of course you have to take that into account. But if you want to
get something out of the coaching, these are the minimum requirements.

[00:06:41] Alessandra Marini: Otherwise, Then you'regoing to blame the coach that he didn't do a good job. And of course there is
a, this shared responsibility. And this is why I love coaching because there is
a shared responsibility. The coach guide you. Okay. But you lead. Okay. So it's
not it's not the coach that does all the work.

[00:06:59] Alessandra Marini: [00:07:00]If you're not doing your part, this is not going to work. So ask yourself the
question, why do you want to do the coaching? And if the motivation is not
strong enough, maybe it's not the right moment for you, but if you build a
relationship of trust as well with your coach, it is so empowering because you
have your safe space where you can open up and then you clear.

[00:07:23] Alessandra Marini: Some things inside ofyourself before opening up with the team members, because this is the main
point. It's not just opening up with your coach, but how do you open up also
with your team members? And if you do it from a clean place, vulnerability is
beautiful because you know that it's not something scary because people can can
touch some of the wounds, but you healed the wounds beforehand.

[00:07:45] Alessandra Marini: Working with your coach,for example.

[00:07:47] Andrew Liew: Oh, it just reminds me of thisvivid. Coat like, the eagle for them, they will always grow their beak until
very long. So in order for them to be sharp again, to feed or to [00:08:00] feed their kids, they have to break theirbeak, which is very painful or even the lobster or the crab, right?

[00:08:06] Andrew Liew: They have come out of that hardshell to grow a new shell again to grow bigger. And there is that set of
vulnerability that they have to take that risk in order to grow. Yes. Very,
Absolutely. Now the next interesting question is what do you think about the
future of coaching given the rapid rise of artificial intelligence and the
future of work, like how does these three things go hand in hand in, the future
or what is your view on that?

[00:08:33] Alessandra Marini: Yes, I think that thecoaching industry is moving completely online. This is the first thing. And so
in my opinion, Now we have access to a lot of more coaches because now you do
not have just your neighbor or the coach that lives in your town. So it's
beautiful because you have access to more people.

[00:08:51] Alessandra Marini: And something that in myopinion is very important as well in In coaching is that as we were saying the
level of awareness [00:09:00] is increasing.Some basic things that maybe previously you needed a coach to to realize that
or to to understand this this topic or to have a new awareness, et cetera.

[00:09:11] Alessandra Marini: Now you can find it online.And this is why, in my opinion, before getting a coach, et cetera, it can be
interesting to to have a general knowledge about a self development, self growth,
personal development, sorry, or personal growth and and yeah, I think that it's
also the future of coaching is It's, going to be very much normalized in in

[00:09:34] Alessandra Marini: If we think about, forexample, corporate corporate coaching, because there are different ways of of
of coaching. But for the corporate coaching, I think that, yes, it's going to
be very much more normalized because as we were saying previously, wellbeing is
not just a buzzword anymore, but it's a real thing.

[00:09:51] Alessandra Marini: And if we're not able toprovide that talent will go elsewhere. Or they will create their own companies.
I think that yes coaching has [00:10:00] a lotof a beautiful space in corporations. Yes, that's a part of the answer I would
like to give. Cool. So you

[00:10:06] Andrew Liew: mentioned about but now coachinghas gained its acceptance where everything is going online and so many cultures
and coaching may normalize with corporate coaching coming into place.

[00:10:17] Andrew Liew: Now the interesting question isthat apart from the previous answer that I gave for somebody to pick a coach or
to receive coaching, he has first have to be willing to be vulnerable, look
into questioning the belief and receiving feedback. Now the next Interesting
question because as you mentioned, there's suddenly so many coaches or so
called so many self taught gurus.

[00:10:38] Andrew Liew: How does one, how does a leaderor how does a manager, whether is it going for personal coaching or corporate
coaching? How does he or she knows what's the best fit coach for him or her
needs? Yeah. What would you advise, them?

[00:10:53] Alessandra Marini: Absolutely. The first thingthat's come to my mind is that in my opinion a leader.

[00:10:59] Alessandra Marini: Should [00:11:00] ask himself or herself the question, do Iwant a mentor or do I want to coach a mentor? Yeah, the mentor is a person who
has been there. Okay, so maybe they have had the experience that the client is
experiencing right now. And so he offers his personal experience and what he or
she has been through and this can help or not.

[00:11:24] Alessandra Marini: the client. Okay. So thisis something or is this person wanting is willing to go through coaching and
coaching is about not outsourcing the knowledge. Okay. But finding your own
knowledge. Okay. So this is why I was saying when you're coaching is when you
When you ask questions.

[00:11:45] Alessandra Marini: And of course, if you wanta coach that will help you to find your own answers, you need to be willing to
go deeper within yourself. But if you want to do something lighter or just to
get to some strategies, how to do stuff, et [00:12:00]cetera, maybe a mentor would be a better recommendation. And both are valid.

[00:12:04] Alessandra Marini: It just depends on what youwant.

[00:12:06] Andrew Liew: Share with me, like, how, what doyou mean by deeper within yourself? Do you have a personal experience where you
also received coaching before and to eventually discover that deeper yourself
versus when you receive mentorship?

[00:12:20] Alessandra Marini: Yes, absolutely. I canshare one example of a one of my clients recently where this person had some
struggle expressing herself and when she was, when she had some disagreement
with the boss or colleagues, et cetera.

[00:12:36] Alessandra Marini: So if I have a mentorapproach. I would give her the tools and strategies and models to help them
formulate her her message in a very clear and efficient way. This would be what
a venture could do. For example, if I am a coach, I would question more. What
how yeah, I would question more [00:13:00]about her difficulty of of of sharing the message.

[00:13:05] Alessandra Marini: Okay. And actually what Iwhat we discovered with this coach, with this client, sorry, is that She was
not allowing herself talk about a disagreement, et cetera, because in her own
culture and in her own personal experience, she was not able to express when
she was not when she was not agreeing with some, with someone in her personal

[00:13:29] Alessandra Marini: And so she was not allowingthat part to come up at work neither. So it was repeating a pattern of her
personal life into her professional life. And once she discovered this, helped
a lot to expressing the boundaries expressing what was important to her, et
cetera, et cetera. So you see the difference between I will offer you some
knowledge or I will help you understand where does it come from and how it is
impacting your life right now.

[00:13:56] Alessandra Marini: And of course you are notoutsourcing the[00:14:00] yes, the knowledgebecause now you have. Your own answers because what happens with a mentorship
sometimes is that and of course, this is a not true all the time. It also depends
how you do your mentorship, of course, but when you have when you're a client
and you have a question or you want to be helped, you go to see a mentor.

[00:14:17] Alessandra Marini: He will give you an answer.And then the next time you have a question, you do not have the tool to think
about your own answer. So you go back to the mentor. And this is why, in my
opinion, sometimes some my gurus online create a relationship of codependency
or dependency where I do not have my own freedom.

[00:14:38] Alessandra Marini: And I do not trust my ownintuition about things while in coaching that's not the case because the most,
the thing that I I, appreciate the most that I care the most about clients is
to make sure that we have a starting point in coaching and we have an ending
point. Coaching will never go on forever because I want my client to be [00:15:00] able to find his own or her own wisdom andyeah, and to be free and do not outsource her wellbeing or his his knowledge.

[00:15:08] Andrew Liew: Very interesting way ofexpressing these two ideas. As you mentioned, mentorship, it's about the person
has been there, he has given you some tools, some new strategies to solve the
particular problem at hand. It's a very quick, responsive way. When the mentor
probably doesn't engage the same situation as you do, this thing doesn't work
anymore, right?

[00:15:29] Andrew Liew: As for coaching, it gets you togo deep within. To go and search within yourself. It's if I do watch those
hollywood movies where you know the ancient master or the sensei. I don't know
why you watch kung fu panda I know of course Little mouse which is the sensei
right the grandmaster and the tortoise, right?

[00:15:47] Andrew Liew: Talk to the panda kung fu pandahimself and getting him to really be aware that actually he knows most of the
kung fu strokes But he's trying to get the really true congruence between why
he [00:16:00] needs to fight for what he fightsfor and once he gets there He's no longer afraid of the villain, no matter how
big or how small.

[00:16:07] Andrew Liew: Yes, of course, maybe the villainmight be very big. He might not defeat him the first time, but he's now at
peace with himself to going back at the problem again, right? Absolutely.
Having said that, interestingly, you also mentioned about coaching as a starting
point and an ending point. As we have seen in sports coaching, they, the coach
is almost like a full time job.