How do you deliver volatile news while you’re sitting down and addressing someone with a “big cat” personality?
In this video, Michael demonstrates how to deliver an ultimatum to a “big cat.” The term “cat” describes people with independent personalities and is borrowed from Michael’s analogy of household pets. If you know someone who always wonders what’s in it for them, chances are they’re a cat.
[Narrator] We’re about to sneak into Michael Grinder’s training room. He’s a pioneer when it comes to nonverbal communication. Let’s listen as he shares some of his secrets.
[Michael Grinder (MG)] I’m going to sit with my back straight. My head will not move. My eyes will stay open. This is called congruency.
This is how you handle big cats: “You have been valuable to us. And I know that you bring a lot of money into this corporation. However, for you to continue, you will need to get along with your peers better. I want you to take this weekend and think about whether you want to come back on Monday. And if you come back, here are the conditions you’ll come back with. I will be evaluating you every week.”
[MG] Now, the difference between this and what I’ve taught you before is if you’re doing something heavy, you go to a third point. Not with a cat. You look the cat right in the eye. But you’ve gotta be comfortable. If I’m nervous and going like this, “I know you’re very valuable, (nervous hand movements) but we, you can’t do,” Then I’m pleading, I’m pleading.
[Woman] They can’t respect that.
[MG] They won’t respect it. So when I was doing this with Julian, as soon as she’d blink, I have dominance over her.
[Woman] Look for the blink.
[MG] It’s the ability to look someone right in the eye. Don’t move that head. You’ve gotta breathe low the whole time. Now join me. I’m gonna say a sentence, and you’re going to repeat it. “You have been valuable.” Everyone do that. Ready, go.
[Group] You have been valuable.
[MG] And we appreciate what you do for the company.
[Group] And we appreciate what you do for the company.
[MG] Think this weekend.
[Group] Think this weekend.
[MG] Now keep your hands still from now on. “In order for you to come back.”
[Group] In order for you to come back.
[MG] Head still. Good. “You will need to understand.”
[Group] You will need to understand.
[MG] That you will get along with your peers.
[Group] That you will get along with peers.
[MG] Now, if you want, you can now switch, and you say something like this: “I personally hope that you decide to come back on Monday.” This is my person talking now. That’s not my position anymore. But as soon as I do that, then I go back to my position. Think about it. Because if you’re working with cats, you stay with your position. When you’re working with dogs, you go to your person.
[Woman] Now that was an individual.
[MG] I can do it with the whole group standing. We’ll cover that next.
Want to learn more? Check out How to Deliver Volatile News While Standing.
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