“An echo chambers a metaphorical description of a situation in which information ideas or beliefs are amplified or reinforced by communication and repetition inside a defined system.” What that means is we sit and we talk to those who have the same ideas and belief systems that we have and through our conversations with them, they reinforce our beliefs. So, when we don’t step outside that echo chamber we never really get other ideas or thoughts. When you don’t open yourself up to the opportunity to have a deep discussion and solid disagreements where you can come to the consensus you’re stuck in that echo chamber. Today on the funnel we discuss how sales management can avoid the echo chamber altogether. As always if you have any questions feel free to schedule a free 30-minute consultation and I’ll do my best to help in any way I can.

What we’re going to cover:

  • Why don’t they speak up?
  • Practice
  • Constructive criticism
  • DIY
  • Implement



Why don’t they speak up?



“When folks don’t talk or speak up, it’s generally fear or culture. Something in your culture is saying don’t do that.”

For example:

“I had a company that used to put out a questionnaire, then the questionnaire would come out every year and we’d get the results, and the idea behind the results was to change things that needed changing. Instead, they were more interested in figuring out who wrote what in the questionnaire. Trying to figure out who the dissenters are. Now, that’s a cultural issue and that creates fear and people aren’t going to say something for fear of reprisals. They’re not going to really tell you what they think. “

“Now, that’s a cultural issue and that creates fear and people aren’t going to say something for fear of reprisals. They’re not going to really tell you what they think. “


Status Quo

“Some people interpret speaking up as a challenge to the status quo or a challenge to the company. Maybe it’s disrespectful or they feel like it’s counterproductive. Of course, it depends on what they’re speaking up about, how they’re saying it, but in some cases, any kind of speaking up is a potential problem.”

“This is basically, without saying it, an underlying current of encouragement that says be quiet, we don’t want to empower you to speak, we want silence. We might say publicly that our people are family and they take care of us, we take care of them, and we encourage them but that may not be real.”


“People need to know who they can trust and who they communicate with and if they’re taught not to speak up these are the things that happen. In order to change that you have to open the culture, embrace diverse opinions because they’re welcome, build a trust bond that allows people to open their mouths and say what they think or feel without reprisals.”



Look in the mirror

“Look in the mirror because this isn’t natural for most of us, right? And then think about how you react to things like that as a manager. How do you take folks that come up to you and question what you’re doing and how you’re doing it? Now oftentimes we think we’re better than we are but we’re not. Notice how that reaction affects those folks.”

Drop the hypersensitive reaction

“How do you react when people bring ideas to you? Your job is to help them to get past that hypersensitive reaction you might have, or even better to get past the hypersensitive reaction and let them know you really want feedback.”

Work on an open response

“I want them to give me feedback on how it’s working for them. It’s not a one-way street, I want to know if this is working because if it’s not we will change it, we will figure something out, I want to have an open response to that.”

“If you calmly listen to what’s being said, open yourself up, you’ll be amazed at what happens.”

Constructive criticism


Ask for it

“You need to ask for it because people will try to tell you what they want you to hear. Wake up folks, you’re in management: most people do not want to rock the boat, they’re going to tell you what they think you want to hear and that’s the echo chamber at its best. They’re going to agree with your ideas and they’re going to shake their head yes.”

Things to work on:

“It’s not their job to open up it’s your job to get them to open up. Be aware of how you respond. Give positive feedback to those who dissent, acknowledge that they’ve done it, craft your conversations and questions in a way that pull that constructive criticism and that real information out of somebody. Be aware of your own emotional triggers and hot buttons and how that could affect things and start working on that.”


“So, it’s not enough just to invite the constructive criticism. You have to manage it to a point where you’re listening and you’re pulling that out of folks.”

“Most people if you really work on it, you ask the right questions, and you’re aware of your own feelings, responses, and emotional triggers, you’ll get positive feedback, and you’ll get the outcome you’re looking for.”



You do it

“Do it yourself. You do it, you speak up the food chain or when you see something’s wrong. And I’m not telling you to get involved in everybody’s life but if there is somebody doing something bad speak up.”

Your boss

“Speak up with your bosses, to people that are higher up the food chain to you. And think about how you are maybe not expressing yourself fully or pulling back away from that and why are you doing that? What is it that’s causing that to happen? That awareness within yourself will help you moving forward. In the cases where you’re free to speak and you can say what’s on your mind, why? What is it that allows you to do that and make you feel comfortable enough to do that?”


“Do it with your friends, your spouse, your significant other, whatever people you have relationships with- speak up. Understand the moment, Am I holding back? Why am I holding back? What kind of reaction am I getting and how is that making me feel? You do that it’s going to help you get better at opening up.”



Build an open environment

“You never really know what people are thinking and if you go back to the last podcast good people have choices. If you live in this echo chamber and everybody is agreeing with you and everybody says you’re right you’ve got a problem on your hands.”


“Good leaders surround themselves with people who are going to tell the truth. Bad leaders can’t handle the truth so they surround themselves with people who are going to tell them what’s great about them.”


“If they don’t feel open enough to talk to you then you’re never going to really know what’s on your mind you’re going to live inside that echo chamber. This is a huge risk to you as a leader and to the company. You practice what I put in place here and you’ll see a significant improvement in all phases of your work life. One of the best things you can do for yourself as a sales manager is to get outside that echo chamber.”

Keep Filling The Funnel

We would love to hear from you. Let us know what you think about this episode. Please feel free to reach out to us if there is a specific sales topic you would like me to cover.  You can find me on Twitter at @Sheajohnr or email me at  And if you get a chance, please feel free to review us on iTunes.
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