Personally, I’ve found it to be the most useful “window” of opportunity to analyze the fascinating process of human interaction, especially in business interactions between Entrepreneurs and their prospects or customers.
The Johari Window has four panes (quadrants) and divides “personal awareness” into four different classes: Open, Hidden, Blind and Unknown. The lines dividing the four panes are like window shades, which can move as an interaction progresses. In this human interaction model, each person is represented by their own window. So here’s my “not-so-brief” overview ;-)
The “Open” Quadrant
Open depicts things that both I know about myself, and that you know about me. For instance, I know you’re reading this blog post and so do you … which really makes this interaction (at this very moment) a mutually conscious human interaction.
This makes sense to you so far, right?
In an online marketing context, when a new prospect “opts-in” to your list, the size of the opening of this first quadrant is not very large, since there has been little information (or marketing intimacy) exchanged between the both of you.
But as you build rapport with your prospect utilizing autoresponder sequences, blog posts (like this one), teleseminars and other marketing communications, the window shades move down or to the right, placing more into the open window.
Fascinating, isn’t it? Just wait, it gets even more interesting…
The “Blind” Quadrant
The Blind quadrant represents things that the prospect or customer knows about you (on a personal or professional level) that you are unaware of.
For instance, this happens if you’re conducting a teleseminar and one of your students hangs-up on you because she has to pick-up her kids from school. This information is in your Blind quadrant because your student knows she’s hanging up the phone, but you don’t.
If that same student calls you up after the teleseminar and tells you she hung-up before the call was over, the window shade moves to the right, enlarging the Open quadrant’s area.
The “Hidden” Quadrant
The Hidden quadrant signifies things that you know about yourself or your marketing campaigns (in a business context) that your prospects or customers don’t know.
For instance, if you’ve intentionally withheld information about an upcoming marketing launch, this information is in the Johari Hidden quadrant. And as soon as you inform your list about the details of a forthcoming launch, you pull the window shade down, moving the information in their Hidden quadrant and automatically enlarge the Open quadrant’s area.
Here’s the interesting part: As you get to know your prospects and customers better, it’s only natural for you to feel more comfortable disclosing more intimate details about yourself, right?
In a Johari Window context, this process is called: “Self-disclosure.” In a “marketing” context, I call it “Transparency.”
Granted, it’s a little scary to be Transparent for the first time, but once you make a habit of it, you’ll discover that it’s the highest impact rapport “accelerator” of all marketing communication methods!
The “Unknown” Quadrant
The Unknown quadrant represents things that neither you know about yourself or your business, nor your prospects and customers know about you.
If you’ve even been on a public speaking stage, you’ve probably discovered how much new information can be revealed in ninety minutes, not previously known to you, or your audience.
For instance, you may be terrified to speak in front of audiences of a thousand people or more. But, if the seminar organizer creates a safe environment before, during and after you’re on stage, your speech won’t be any more daunting than speaking to a friend or colleague, one-on-one.
A situation like this almost always triggers a new awareness and personal growth, not to mention catapulting your income. (It’s easier to make six-figures from a thousand-person audience than a hundred-person audience).
In Johari Window context, the process of moving your interactions with other humans from the Hidden quadrant into the Open quadrant is synonymous with what’s often referred to in a business context as the “Win-Win” situation :-)
So What’s Your Next Step?
Studying human interaction is like the game of Othello – it’s easy to learn, but it takes a lifetime to master. So I encourage you to go back the top of this post and re-read it.
Print out the Johari Window PDF and tape it to your wall.
Understand this: Once you begin to muster the courage to become more Transparent in your personal and professional interactions, you’ll discover that the majority of your relationships (and business deals) are “Win-Win!”
I thank you for reading and I really do want to read your comments. So please utilize the “comment” box below and “interact” with me so we can broaden the Open quadrant of our Johari Window together.
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