Gina Jonas: Get Outside Your Comfort Zone

“Nobody likes change, but it’s the one thing you have to do if you want to survive.”

That’s the clear message delivered by Gina Jonas in a leadership discussion October 7 at Auto Glass Week in San Antonio, Texas.

Jonas, President of Gina Jonas and Associates, Inc., in Newport Beach, Calif., spoke to

Gina Jonas

Gina Jonas

about 40 attendees in her presentation, “Leadership Skills for AGRR Companies.” She told the crowd that their experiences at Auto Glass Week had given them new tools, ideas and connections.

“Now,” she said, “you’re going to have to introduce change into your business.”

Part of that change includes leaving one’s comfort zone, she said as she led attendees through a series of communication exercises. And a big part of leadership during change is communication.

“You don’t learn anything new and you don’t grow in your comfort zone,” Jonas said.

During one of the exercises for active listening and intuition, Jonas pointed out that what you are trying to communicate is not always what the other person is hearing. As a listener, you have to pay attention and relate to the speaker – pick up on his cues to determine what his communication goal is.

As a speaker, she said, you must clearly convey your goal without distracting, confusing or turning off your listener.

Jonas also led the attendees through a short exercise in paraphrasing – repeating back to the speaker what you just heard (or think you heard). Listening – paraphrasing and understanding – is just as important as speaking, she said, and key to understanding both sides of the communication cycle. And when it comes to speaking, doing so in a clear, respectful tone is an important as the message you’re trying to convey.

The result, she said, is effective leadership – being a leader who can empathize, instill discipline and inspire employees.

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