Getting to Know You
Kevin Stokstad, Director of Product Management-Exhaust & Emissions, Nelson Global Products, Inc.
‘People are overwhelmed on a daily basis and don’t always know what they’re attempting to accomplish. Help them understand.’
Even if you work side-by-side with someone from another department, you may know very little about him or her. Perhaps he’s older than you, or she’s the shy type. Kevin Stokstad, in his role as director of product management for exhaust and emissions for the high-performance vehicle market, interacts with different colleagues and customers all the time — making him an ideal person to speak with about persuading others who don’t share the same personality, generation or gender as you.
What are three tips for getting to “yes” with a peer you don’t know well?
I recommend a quick get-to-know-each-other session to understand people’s personalities and backgrounds, because their experiences and past lives tend to form how they make decisions. This allows me to tailor how I approach individuals to get the results I want. The second thing I do is “paint the picture” and provide clear line of sight on project deliverables, expectations of management, and value to the customer and organization. People are overwhelmed on a daily basis and don’t always know what they’re attempting to accomplish. Help them understand and make them feel they’ll be involved in meaningful work if they say ‘yes’ to you. Finally, say thanks by buying lunch or organizing a special activity. Everyone wants recognition, so I also like to promote jobs well done to our senior leadership and CEO.