Introduction: Conversational Methods ** Ways of structuring conversations

There is a multitude of varied conversational methods (also known as processes, practices, methodologies, tools or techniques). Many of them have exotic names but if you are not familiar with them – do not be put off by the terminology. The methods that are most relevant to Conversational Leadership are the ones that can be … Continue reading Introduction: Conversational Methods ** Ways of structuring conversations

After Action Review ** What was learned and what could be done better the next time

An AAR or after action review is a simple conversational method to review an event after its completion to discuss, what went well, what didn’t go so well, what was learned and what could be done better the next time. An after action review (AAR) is a structured review or de-brief process for analyzing what … Continue reading After Action Review ** What was learned and what could be done better the next time

Brainstorming Meetings ** Maybe debate is going to be less pleasant, but it will always be more productive

During my corporate life, I never liked brainstorming. It just never worked for me. And I wasn’t convinced it worked well for others either. Brainstorming sessions can be conducted in all sorts of ways, and it could be that I just had some bad experiences, but I am not so sure. Some time ago, I … Continue reading Brainstorming Meetings ** Maybe debate is going to be less pleasant, but it will always be more productive

Brown-Bag Lunches ** An informal opportunity to learn at work

A brown bag lunch is an informal opportunity for employees to learn at work. A brown bag lunch is used to convey work information occasionally but mostly serves to enhance employee knowledge about non-work or job-specific issues and ideas. Topics for a brown bag lunch range from viewing slides of a coworker’s vacation trip to … Continue reading Brown-Bag Lunches ** An informal opportunity to learn at work

Community of practice ** A group of people who share a passion for something they do

A community of practice (COP) is a group of people who share a concern or a passion for something they do and learn how to do it better as they interact regularly. Credit: Etienne Wenger Resources Wikipedia: Community of practice [Status: stub] Last updated: 4th November, 2017 Continue reading Community of practice ** A group of people who share a passion for something they do

Connection before content Without relatedness, no work can occur

Too often in organizational life, we ask things of people or try to work with them before we have established a relationship. This is a big mistake. We must establish a personal connection with each other. Connection before content. Without relatedness, no work can occur. Credit: Peter Block Connection before content is a principle that … Continue reading Connection before content Without relatedness, no work can occur

Conversare * Social gatherings which people engage in one-to-one conversation with a stranger

Conversare events are social gatherings in public places in which people engage in one-to-one conversation with a stranger. They are the brainchild of Alan Stewart. This is how Alan describes them: The name Conversare (pronounced conversari) comes from the Latin: to turn or to dance together. Conversare events are social gatherings in public places in which … Continue reading Conversare * Social gatherings which people engage in one-to-one conversation with a stranger

Debate ** Argument is meant to reveal the truth, not to create it

The only way that someone can be of help to you is by challenging your ideas. Credit: Anthony de Mello   Argument is meant to reveal the truth, not to create it. Credit: Edward De Bono   Unfortunately, we are so steeped in debate, proving one’s point and challenging others, that alternative possibilities for interaction … Continue reading Debate ** Argument is meant to reveal the truth, not to create it

The Dérive * An unplanned journey through a urban landscape

Guy Debord, a French Marxist, who lived in Paris in the 50s, initially developed the practice of the dérive. A dérive is an unplanned journey through a landscape, usually urban, on which the subtle aesthetic contours of the surrounding architecture and geography subconsciously direct the travellers, with the ultimate goal of encountering an entirely new … Continue reading The Dérive * An unplanned journey through a urban landscape

Dialogue ** The potential for a real revolution in culture

One potent conversational or thinking tool is Dialogue inspired by the work of the physicist David Bohm. Dialogue helps in two fundamental ways: It frees and dramatically improves interpersonal communication – fundamental for the sharing of tacit knowledge. It helps reveal to us and allows us, as individuals, to question and change our deeply held … Continue reading Dialogue ** The potential for a real revolution in culture

Dialogic Organizational Development From a dialogic perspective, change results from transformational conversations

Diagnostic OD Organization Development (OD) has been around since the early 50s and traditionally has focused on what is termed diagnostic OD. OD is the theory and practice of planned, systematic change in the attitudes, beliefs, and values of the employees through creation and reinforcement of long-term training programs. OD is action oriented. It starts … Continue reading Dialogic Organizational Development From a dialogic perspective, change results from transformational conversations

Flipped teaching * Speech is a bad medium for communicating information - so watch lectures at home

Traditional lectures such as the one below can be sleep inducing or worse: Boring Economics teacher from Ferris Bueller’s Day Off. The idea behind flipped teaching is straightforward: Students watch video recordings of lectures in their place of choice in their own time. The time in class is now available for hands-on work and face-to-face interaction … Continue reading Flipped teaching * Speech is a bad medium for communicating information – so watch lectures at home

Huddles ** Short, regular, peer-to-peer team discussions

A huddle is a regular peer-to-peer discussion, usually lasting less than 15 minutes every morning designed to allow the members of a team or small department to update each other on their work or their project. Resources Forbes: How Simple Team Huddles Can Make A Business Better [Status: stub] Last updated: 6th November, 2017 Continue reading Huddles ** Short, regular, peer-to-peer team discussions

Ongoing performance conversations ** From annual performance reviews to on-going performance conversations

Performance conversations – regular, structured, face-to-face conversations between managers and their direct reports about organizational performance  – are one of the most powerful management tools at a leader’s disposal. Successful performance management depends on the regularity and quality of performance conversations, and the format of an annual appraisal almost ensures that managers and employees fail to … Continue reading Ongoing performance conversations ** From annual performance reviews to on-going performance conversations

Peer Assist * Learn from your peers; someone has already done it

A Peer Assist is a conversational method that brings together a group of peers to elicit feedback on a problem, project or activity, and draw lessons from the participants’ knowledge and experience. [Status: stub. I plan to expand this post with an emphasis on what I call “informal peer assists”. ] Last updated: 5th August, … Continue reading Peer Assist * Learn from your peers; someone has already done it

Positive Deviance * An approach to behavioral and social change

Positive Deviance (PD) is an approach to behavioral and social change based on the observation that there are individuals or groups of people in every community whose behaviors and strategies enable them to find better solutions to problems than their peers even though they have access to the same resources and face similar challenges. In … Continue reading Positive Deviance * An approach to behavioral and social change

Randomised Coffee Trials * It is just a coffee, but at the same time it is much more

A Randomised Coffee Trial or RCT for short is a rather fancy name for an incredibly simple but powerful idea. RCTs are used to connect people in an organization at random and give them time to meet to have a coffee and talk about whatever they wish. They are a simple, low-cost way of enabling … Continue reading Randomised Coffee Trials * It is just a coffee, but at the same time it is much more