"Conversations are like fuel – it’s the energy that keeps a company going"
Conversation matters; through conversations we share ideas, enthusiasms, concerns and questions. When people talk openly and honestly, teams make better decisions, innovation increases, individuals feel more supported and everyone performs better. When conversations become one-way, stale or antagonistic, there is a knock-on impact on engagement, performance, wellbeing and safety.
"When people purposefully withhold meaning (information & feelings) from one another, individually smart people can do collectively stupid things” Patterson et al. (2012).
At The Keil Centre, much of our work as psychologists requires us to dialogue meaningfully with our clients; we have had to learn to talk and listen well. Recently, we have been asked to share our skills and explore the research behind effective conversations with our clients. We have run workshops on conversational leadership - the skills leaders need to increase success – and meaningful dialogue – the skills teams need to understand each other and other teams better, even in difficult circumstances. These workshops have typically been short seminars, bringing theory to live with tips, techniques and advice for improving the quality of information exchange and dialogue between individuals, within teams and across organisations.