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Peter Bromberg

Peter Bromberg's Public Library

Apr 17, 15

Personal conversation flourishes to the degree that the participants stay close to each other, figuratively as well as literally. Organizational conversation, similarly, requires leaders to minimize the distances—institutional, attitudinal, and sometimes spatial—that typically separate them from their employees. Where conversational intimacy prevails, those with decision-making authority seek and earn the trust (and hence the careful attention) of those who work under that authority. They do so by cultivating the art of listening to people at all levels of the organization and by learning to speak with employees directly and authentically.

" Traditional corporate communication must give way to a process that is more dynamic and more sophisticated. Most important, that process must be conversational."

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Physical proximity between leaders and employees isn’t always feasible. But mental or emotional proximity is essential.
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This intimacy distinguishes organizational conversation from long-standard forms of corporate communication. It shifts the focus from a top-down distribution of information to a bottom-up exchange of ideas. It’s less corporate in tone and more casual. And it’s less about issuing and taking orders than about asking and answering questions.
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In part, a shift toward greater interactivity reflects a shift in the use of communication channels. For decades, technology made it difficult or impossible to support interaction within organizations of any appreciable size. The media that companies used to achieve scale and efficiency in their communications—print and broadcast, in particular—operated in one direction only. But new channels have disrupted that one-way structure. Social technology gives leaders and their employees the ability to invest an organizational setting with the style and spirit of personal conversation.

Yet interactivity isn’t just a matter of finding and deploying the right technology. Equally if not more important is the need to buttress social media with social thinking. Too often, an organization’s prevailing culture works against any attempt to transform corporate communication into a two-way affair. For many executives and managers, the temptation to treat every medium at their disposal as if it were a megaphone has proved hard to resist. In some companies, however, leaders have fostered a genuinely interactive culture—values, norms, and behaviors that create a welcoming space for dialogue.

Mar 22, 15

"The TPN is important for problem solving, focusing of attention, making decisions, and control of action. The DMN plays a central role in emotional self-awareness, social cognition, and ethical decision making. It is also strongly linked to creativity and openness to new ideas. Because activation of the TPN tends to suppress activity in the DMN, an over-emphasis on task-oriented leadership may prove deleterious to social and emotional aspects of leadership. Similarly, an overemphasis on the DMN would result in difficulty focusing attention, making decisions, and solving known problems. "

Mar 22, 15

"While sympathetic-associated regions predominate in executive- and salience-processing networks, parasympathetic regions predominate in the default mode network. "

Mar 21, 15

What it did correlate with was the strength of a person’s group identity. “The more an individual’s team affiliation resonated for them, the less empathy they were likely to express for members of the rival team,” he says. “Even in this contrived setting, something as inconsequential as a computer game was enough to generate a measurable gap.”
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All three of these outliers, it turned out, were Israeli peace activists. In a scatter plot of the study’s results, in which blue dots represented the Israeli subjects and red dots represented the Palestinian ones, the peace activists stood out: three specks of blue in a quadrant of red.
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He reasoned that something somewhere in their lives had overridden their implicit biases and moved them to behave with greater empathy toward the minority group. He wanted to know what that something was. “If we could figure out how it happens,” he said, “maybe we could harness it somehow.”

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