Work IS the Conversation and Conversations are Important Work

It is time to change the conversation about work and realize that the work is the conversation. Our focus is on helping individuals, teams, leaders and the entire organization shift from the old world of minimal conversations – keeping your head down and grinding away at tasks – to the new world conversations – diversity of perspectives, engaging and synergizing each other’s strengths and passions, searching for innovative solutions to old world problems and shifting management principles to leadership vision for a rapidly changing world.

In a 1993 article named, What’s So New About the New Economy?, Alan Webber, co-founder of Fast Company, pointed out that work has become conversation. The bit that really caught me was – “Time was, if the boss caught you talking on the phone or hanging around the water cooler, he would have said, “Stop talking and get to work!” Today if you’re not on the phone or talking with colleagues and customers, chances are you’ll hear, “Start talking and get to work!”” 

The challenge is to learn -- or unlearn old habits -- how to have powerful conversations with a wide range of people and also to know what to have conversations about! Whatever the topic, using a good story to illustrate your point is usually a great way to get the other person (or persons) to open up a bit and share their own story. Asking open-ended, facilitative questions is also a powerful way to get better conversations cooking. Try asking, “Wow, that’s interesting! What happened after that?” or “How did you get to that point?”.

Eric Schmidt of Google fame has said that we come into contact with more people in a day than our grandparents did in a year! With today’s technology driving us ever closer together and the Knowledge Economy fast becoming the Human Economy, we already have to run to catch up. Come and join the new world conversation with us!