Part 3: Everyone Positions RPM’s in a Consistent Positive Direction

When you read Parts 1 and 2 you became familiar with key components of Organizational Unity of Effort that impact Relationships, Performance and Morale (RPM’s). Part 1 shared the value for an entire organization to concentrate on front line performance and delivery. Part 2 explains that the organization’s vision and vision statement are most essential to unify everyone in the same direction. This is Part 3 of a four part series.

CONSISTENT POSITIVE DIRECTION helps you to practice another dimension for yourself and your workplace. It assures the direction of forward movement. In my book, Taking Charge of Your Positive Direction, I describe CONSISTENT POSITIVE DIRECTION as “skills and approaches to speak, write, learn and impact reality in the direction of the required and desired outcomes, results, accomplishments, achievements, goals, objectives and/or successes”. ‘Positive thinking’ became one of the most significant learnings in the twentieth century. CONSISTENT POSITIVE DIRECTION takes you into the twenty-first century with the language to identify and use direction in your positive thinking, speaking and attitude. I began my company, T.A.L.K. Associates, many years ago with language and direction in mind. The title of my book implies that you are in charge of your own positive direction rather than someone else’s. The power is within you to control the direction of what comes out of your mouth. Your tongue can steer you in the direction closer to the success that you want or farther away. If you want success, then talk success. If you want teamwork, then talk teamwork. If you want trust, then talk trust. Let the language of CONSISTENT POSITIVE DIRECTION navigate you to the success that you want; the achievements that you want; the results that you want; the goals, objectives and/or accomplishments that you want. In an organizational RPM context, the direction of success and results always includes the direction toward the customer – customer satisfaction, client success or growth, student achievement.

In a conversation that I had with a school district administrator one day, she talked about how she was working on a project and that another person that she had to work with was, “slowing things down and didn’t seem to want the project to be successful.” She said that she could only do so much because the person outranked her. My response was that rather than to focus so much on the differences between her and the other person, make the other person an ally. In other words, create the circumstances that will cause the person to want or feel a need to help you so that the project can be a success. “Also,” I said, “instead of predicting how the person is going to act, create the circumstances that may produce a better relationship. That means that you may have to do something different too.” I saw her about a month later and she said that she did what I had suggested and it worked. She said she focused more on making the other person an ally to her and the project. She also made some changes in the way she acted, which created more favorable circumstances for them to work together. They even became friends, she said, and the project was working even better than she could have imagined. In CONSISTENT POSITIVE DIRECTION, that is called PC Upgrade – going from Prediction to Creation. This is just one of the skills and approaches that are great for improving organizational relationships, performance and morale.

Even in the most demanding situations, you can use CONSISTENT POSITIVE DIRECTION to move things forward and get things done. It takes practice and the more you practice the better you get. Here are some of the core skills and approaches for rev-v-ving up the RPM’s in your organization.
• Reality – Interact more about the reality that you want to move toward instead of the reality you want to get away from. You are designed for forward movement.
• Start Options – Talk more about what needs to ‘START’ rather than what needs to ‘stop’, especially when you refer to ‘working together’. You are designed for forward improvement.
• PC Upgrade – Create the circumstances that need to occur for success, instead of predicting the way that people will act to take away from success.
• Help people to ‘PLAY’ instead of making them pay.

Exercise Complete Respect in a Positive Direction – Your organization’s ability to accelerate forward movement and forward improvement in diversity, inclusion and individuality
• Attitudinize yourself, your team and your organization in a positive direction – Just as people possess different attitudes, teams and organizations possess different attitudes. Attitudes are often reflected in relationships and morale either of which can impact performance. Attitudinizing in a positive direction means to express attitudes in the direction of the success or results that are required or desired. Whatever feelings you have, you can always express them in a positive direction. A team may feel that, “Nobody gives us the recognition that we deserve for the work that we do.” In a positive direction the team can say, “We need to be recognized for the work that we do. We want to be able to receive awards and opportunities like others in our organization!” The meaning and feeling can be just as intense. By using the forward focused language of Consistent Positive Direction, you influence more agreement and action toward the desired or required results.
• The RPM Power Principle is a solution-focused decision-making tool to help the organization ‘behave’ its way to a required/desired success. It was inspired by Kurt Lewin’s concept, “Force Field Analysis” ( which identifies organizational strengths, based on the dominance and potential of driving or restraining forces. Using the RPM Power Principle, for each category of organizational relationships, performance and morale, ask two questions: 1) What will take the organization closer to the success that needs to be accomplished; 2) What will take the organization farther away from the success that needs to be accomplished? After answering those questions, you are better equipped to effect the access, the activities and the behavior that move you closer to your goals. Plus, you will be able to help yourself and everyone else to stay motivated by sharing and celebrating successes along the way. When you identify attitudes that take you farther away from your goals, you will know how to translate those attitudes into positive direction activities that also bring you closer to your goals. You will need to know the positive direction skills that help you to partner more effectively with each other. Your attitudinizing skills will accelerate your forward movement when you encounter situations that are particularly demanding.

Using and developing multiple approaches expands your capacity to make your positive direction consistent for forward movement and forward improvement, in service and delivery to your customers.

Part 4 will introduce ‘sustainability’. How do we make the Organizational Unity of Effort frameworks thrive and last?

Author's Bio: 

J. Bert Freeman is the author of Taking Charge of Your Positive Direction (2006)and the Founder of T.A.L.K. Associates. As a Positive Direction Speaker, facilitator and coach, he has provided expert assistance to organizations and individuals in different areas of organizational unity of effort, leadership consistency and diversity since 1982. “Bert” is the originator of the RPM frameworks.

Uniquely, T.A.L.K. Associates is the only organization development and professional development company whose facilitators use the language, skills and approaches of Consistent Positive Direction in everything that they do. They are practitioners as they teach. J. Bert Freeman is also a member of the National Speakers Association. He has a reputation for practicing the Consistent Positive Direction that he teaches, both “on and off the stage”.

He has a B.S. in Engineering from the U.S. Naval Academy and an M.S. in Human Relations from Golden Gate University. In 1972, he was a U.S. National Fencing Champion and a member of the U.S. Olympic Team in Munich.