How do most conversations start?

“How are you doing ?" "Great, and how about you?"  "I am great, thanks!"   And then you get down to whatever you were going to discuss.

But here is an honest question.  Are both participants in the conversation feeling great – especially these days?

More appropriate descriptions might be: nervous, worried, afraid, overwhelmed, scared, tired, uncertain.

While it might be unnerving to respond to someone about how you are feeling, the chances are that they're not feeling great either.  So if you level set the conversation – it's likely that you can have a much more honest conversation about what you were going to talk about anyway.  It might not feel right to respond by saying, "I am ok," but it could be more honest. 

Another slice of this dynamic is I ask my team members in our daily zoom huddles these days, "what's keeping you up at night !”  Their answers reveal issues we need to work on as a team.

As entrepreneurs, the country and world are counting on us to find our internal flame and rebuild great businesses or establish new ones.  We need to do that.  On the one hand, we have to block out all of the craziness around us and focus on the mission to be successful.  But at the same time we are also human and so is everyone we count on.  Honest conversations will help us with the tough and critical road ahead.