Anchoring is a fantastic term, if only because of the clear imagery it offers. There is a lot of security implied here for business leaders and decision-makers and that can really help some to get focused. This is sometimes clumsily described as a person being “stubborn.” And while there may be little between the two terms that is discrete, anchoring allows us to develop an on-the-job vocabulary. And this vocabulary focuses on behaviours. Simple as that.
Anchoring is best understood as having one’s thinking connected or, as the anchor image suggests, tied to a specific point or idea. I have often seen it explained and used in medical arenas when a practitioner refuses to abandon an original diagnosis even in the light of new potentially contradictory information on a patient’s condition. Ego can be a dramatic promontory at times to leading well. Simple as that.
Anchoring can be a strong indicator of a leader’s clear vision and, for this reason, is the start of almost every successful political campaign. What are the values or party platforms that literally anchor each candidate’s choices? Close to home, what are the underpinnings that anchor your recommendations, your ideas for that new parking structure, how to organize the year-end holiday office celebration and so on.
The challenge is to locate the language that anchors you, repeat that language and educate and re-educate others of how your vision is tied to a solid foundation (anchored) over time.
Diana is President of The Soft Skills Group Inc. She is a senior training & development professional with 20 years of experience in delivery, design & consulting with Fortune 500 companies, Universities & Colleges in Canada, the USA, Mexico and Europe.