Meetings serve two purposes There is a second subliminal purpose to a meeting which we often overlook

Meetings serve two purposes. The first is obvious, to fulfill the aim of the meeting or conversation. The second is less obvious and is usually entirely neglected. Most meetings or conversations have a pre-planned outcome. It may be to explore an issue, to make a decision or to solve a problem. But there is always … Continue reading Meetings serve two purposes There is a second subliminal purpose to a meeting which we often overlook

Introduction: Small Group Conversations ** Small groups are an essential building block to any future you want to create

Small group conversations are at the heart of Conversational Leadership. Relationship and connectedness are the pre-condition for change. Every meeting, every process, every training program has to get people connected first. Otherwise, the content falls on deaf ears. So small groups are an essential building block to any future you want to create. Credit: Peter … Continue reading Introduction: Small Group Conversations ** Small groups are an essential building block to any future you want to create

Friends with Cognitive Benefits ** Engaging in short friendly conversations improves people's thinking

Engaging in short friendly conversations boosts people’s performance on a variety of cognitive tasks. A recent study by researchers at the University of Michigan tested 192 undergraduates to determine which types of social interaction helped and which didn’t. The researchers concluded that engaging in short conversations where participants were instructed to get to know one … Continue reading Friends with Cognitive Benefits ** Engaging in short friendly conversations improves people’s thinking

The last of human freedoms ** The ability to chose one's attitude in a given set of circumstances

In 1989, I first read Stephen Covey’s  The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People and he introduced me to the life and work of Viktor Frankl. Viktor Frankl was an internationally renowned psychiatrist. In 1946, he wrote the book Man’s Search for Meaning. In his book, he begins with a deeply moving personal account of his imprisonment in … Continue reading The last of human freedoms ** The ability to chose one’s attitude in a given set of circumstances

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

Peter Block’s four ownership questions Are you prepared to take responsibility for the learning and engagement of others?

How many people at a conference or a workshop genuinely engage with the day and consider they are as much an owner and co-creator of the experience as the chairperson, speakers, and facilitators? And how many are happy just to sit there, entranced, passively listening, and doing as they are told? This short process built around … Continue reading Peter Block’s four ownership questions Are you prepared to take responsibility for the learning and engagement of others?

A word of advice – don’t give it Advice is unfriendly to learning, especially when it is sought

At first thought, the idea that giving advice is a bad thing especially when sought seems a rather strange thing to say. Maybe we can accept the idea of not offering help when it is not requested. But when it is sought? Surely this makes no sense? Advice is unfriendly to learning, especially when it … Continue reading A word of advice – don’t give it Advice is unfriendly to learning, especially when it is sought

How to design powerful questions * Questions open the door to dialogue and discovery

To make better sense of the world and to innovate, we need to convene small groups of people to engage in creative conversations. Creative conversations are triggered by powerful questions. What are powerful questions? Powerful questions are provocative. They spark creative thinking. This leads to new ideas. And new ideas, in turn, lead to innovation. … Continue reading How to design powerful questions * Questions open the door to dialogue and discovery

What’s new about the Knowledge Café? ** In some ways it is not new but in others it is

There is nothing new about the Knowledge Café or is there? When people say that something is not new, they usually mean that they are familiar with the concept and it’s in common practice. To my mind, when this objection is leveled at the Knowledge Café – it means that they do not fully understand … Continue reading What’s new about the Knowledge Café? ** In some ways it is not new but in others it is

Speed Conversations * Without relatedness, no work can occur

I often run a speed conversation session at the start of a Knowledge Café and workshops or conferences. It is a great ice-breaker and exceptionally easy to run. Sometimes these sessions are called speed networking, but I prefer to call them speed conversations as they are far more about conversation than they are networking. You will need a … Continue reading Speed Conversations * Without relatedness, no work can occur