While learning about ‘Personal Mastery’ in class, I learned that an important tool called “Check In”, which is a quality tool that creates an environment for productive and meaningful conversations. This tool is helpful for many people who have trouble speaking in groups. One of the rules of check-in is if someone wants to open a conversation or if someone brings up something that needs to be discussed, remind the group that this is a check-in and that we will talk about it after the check-in is completed.
I must say that listening to others was not easy for me in the beginning because every time someone spoke, I had certain questions in my mind that I wanted to interrupt and ask but with the check in rules you can’t interrupt the person speaking. I realized that this was not a good quality to have and I always say I value input from others but I had not been aware of how to create a safe environment for others to pop and be allowed to without any interruptions from me.
I chair a lot of committee meetings at my place of work which comprise of a lot of different people ranging from Marketing & Events Managers, CEOs of companies and Professional Conference Organisers. Often I find this to be such a daunting task that I have to pray for days to ensure I’m calm and confident and more than anything, hope I will get good participation and feedback from the attendees of these meetings. I find it important to have every participant’s voice heard right from the start reduces any anxiety they might feel and can help a person to be comfortable with participating in the conversation. I experienced how checking in helped me and other people in my group in one of the classes and made a note of it. At the very next committee meeting I had which was about debriefing after an event we hosted, I used this tool and I really saw the results of check-in. It’s as if I had created a safe environment for everyone to contribute towards the meeting. We received a lot of good suggestions for the next event and everyone left feeling important and part of a team. Check-in will definitely be a tool that I will be using in my committee meetings and also at our church meetings where I have an opportunity of chairing the meeting, or I might have to teach my church family how and why it’s done.