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  • Jessie I.

Why you should repeat things as a leader and not get annoyed about it

Updated: May 30

As a leader, repetition is not about repeating the same thing over and over. That is just irritating.


a woman executive during a presentation in a meeting room

Repetition's power calls for a little bit more finesse and skill. Finding multiple inventive and efficient means of communicating the same concept to your team is the key. Thinking about how you repeat yourself is one of the easiest ways to use the power of repetition. Write down what you say instead of just repeating it. Seeing what you said can be very helpful to your team, whether it's in an email, a message on Slack, or a task in your project management system.

A crucial component of communication repair strategies is repeating oneself verbally and in writing. Put differently: One of the easiest ways to overcome communication breakdowns and miscommunications is to repeat yourself. This is because, as numerous studies have demonstrated, repetition both increases message retention and clarity. You probably use repetition as a communication repair strategy dozens of times every day at work without even realizing it.

Repeating a task, rephrasing a statement if you think it wasn't clear enough, or returning to an unanswered question are all examples of using repetition to improve communication and teamwork. Even though you and I have discussed a subject, it's not always clear that you both understand it. By writing it down, you clearly communicate what you said and set clear expectations.

When attempting to improve an underperformer, this is of utmost importance. You don't want to leave anything up in the air when you need to see improvement in their work or they will be fired. By writing down any verbal instructions about what needs to change, you increase the likelihood that they will improve.

Repetition has more than just the ability to solve problems. It can also be of assistance to you when you want to congratulate and reward your team.

However, it is essential to keep in mind that praising an employee on your team once and then forgetting about them for months at a time simply will not cut it. Tell them if you like their work or actions. Your praise will stick if it is repeated, increasing their confidence and motivation over time.

The example you set for your team is the most powerful thing you can do. "Do as I say, not as I do" situations are the fastest way to annoy a team. However, just because you do something well does not mean that your team understands why you did it that way. Use a teachable moment when you set a good example and get the results you wanted.

Spend some time explaining to them what transpired and the significance of it. This helps your team members better comprehend the strategy you want them to take. In addition, it is an excellent illustration of the significance of repetition, as you repeatedly repeat yourself:

Observation: They observed your actions as an example of leadership.

Clarification: You explained the significance of your action and the goals you want them to follow.

Replay: They'll be replaying what they saw you do as you explain things to them in their minds.

This makes a lovely cycle that keeps happening. They will remember what you said when you do it again. You'll be reiterating the concept each time you set that example. Then, if you're a true expert, you'll congratulate them when they follow your example.

The simplicity of repetition is what gives it power. You are more likely to remember a message that you hear over and over again.

Your team is more likely to hear your message and assist in achieving your goals the more senses it touches and times it is heard. You'll get better results with your team if you're deliberate about your routine of repetition.

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