Creating a “No Losers” Mindset in Your Marriage

One of the biggest causes of marital breakdowns … and in business relationships … is the inability to resolve conflict effectively; and every married couple runs into conflict because … Conflict is inevitable … two people who are in love … want each other to think and feel the same way about things … how to deal with money … how to deal with children … free time … and more!

The problem is … too many of us have come to believe that conflict is a bad thing … and that we should avoid it at all costs … but that’s not true … nor is it healthy for your marriage …

The truth is … conflict is a sign of connectedness … it says we have a vital relationship here … Remember – we rarely have conflicts with people we do not know or like.

But the most important thing we need to know about conflict is that it does not have to be negative!  When we learn how to successfully resolve conflicts with our spouse … we discover new things about him or her that we didn’t know before (which is why we’re having the problem) … and that helps to deepen our intimacy.

To make conflict a productive force in our marriage we have to establish a “No Losers Policy.” 

If you are “one,” a house divided against itself can’t stand.  If you are a “team” … it is impossible for one member of a team to win while another member of that same team loses!  You either both win … or you both lose … but there should never be an “I win – You lose” mentality allowed your marriage!

You both “win” when you both feel good about and agree together on the solution to your problem.  Maybe one of you came up with the solution … that’s OK … as long as both of you willingly agree that it is the best solution … you have a win-win scenario!  What will break down any marriage is the “my way or the highway” mentality!

Who Are You Shooting At?

There’s the old saying, that if you don’t know what you’re aiming at, you’ll hit it every time.  Do you know who your customers really are? A few weeks back, I wrote about one of four foundational growth elements - you can find the prior blog (part one) here. As a quick reminder... - Know “who” your business is - Describe your target customer well - Ensure the pictures match the words - Define a simply understood strategy

After knowing “who" your business is, the next key element is knowing who you are trying to serve.  While it’s nice to be able to say demographic or geographic information (income, gender, age range, etc.), that isn’t “who” they are.  That’s like saying the I’m a set of molecules, or organs, or even that I’m a complete map that you got from a series of medical scans and x-rays.  Or I am the sum total of the Census data of my zip code.

Most companies, at best, talk about their customers as if they had a picture of them on their desk.  Yep, there’s your customer - right there. In a frame - 45 year old female, blond hair, blue eyes, three kids, drives a mini-van…you get the idea.

But people have dimensions, they have a soul, they have beliefs and values and….they have a story.

To describe your customer well, you need to know what stories they have in common, what values they hold, what challenges they face, what they believe about themselves, about others, and about the world.  After all, isn’t that how you would want people to know you?

Don’t get me wrong - demographics aren’t bad.  They do help in the efficient purchase of advertising, in the placement of store locations, and in other decisions.  But how do your employees know how to treat a statistic?  Wouldn’t they have a better feel for the customer service they deliver, the web site they design, the type of invoices they should send, if they knew, really knew, the types of customers you target?

So rather than the mom in a mini-van, could it instead be sentences about the hurried life that Susan might lead?  Instead of the franchisee that fits a geographic hole in your coverage, could Joe be a person that values owning a place where his community gathers for a particular purpose?

Don’t shoot at a statistic...reach for a connection.  Learn and tell their aggregated stories so that you can see how your company fits…so that your employees can see them as they connect with them.  And maybe, through you and what your company does, they may ultimately see how they fit in His story.

MICHAEL POWERS - Before chairing a Nashville Convene team and becoming Convene’s Chief Marketing officer, Michael helped Asurion, the leading provider of device insurance, and Des-Case, a small manufacturing company, each more than quadruple in revenue (Asurion was over $1 billion when he left).

Michael loves to help businesses and the people that lead them determine “the next best step upward.” Admittedly, he’s a bit of a strange combination of left and right brain thinking, with degrees and experience in engineering and marketing. His blend of creative and analytical skills enables him to assess complicated, multi-disciplinary issues, create the right plan, and lead others to success.

Michael and his wife have four children, and have developed an additional passion for Haiti. He feels fortunate to have had great mentors along the way, and hopes to pass along a bit of what he’s learned to others to help them in their journey.