Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Conversations that Matter

Shortly before taking a huge step in my professional life (back) I found a rather old post on PI Community dated from April 2009. Every visit to any performance of the Semperoper reminds me of that. I have the feeling that places like operas very closely get to what we are seeking.

Dear all,

Not quite sure whether that is just my personal feeling or sensing, and I would like to share some thoughts that are useful for the future of relevant conversations.

As we all know personal contacts are the most effective ways, we tend to overuse them sometimes. Meeting with people physically restrict us to get only a small part of the picture of the future that is lying ahead of us.

Online conversations can't fully take away that personal conversations and yet they provide a terrific and low-cost opportunity to learn about our own "blind spots" (we don't have to look at others "blind spots", such as organizations, managers, if we haven't worked on ours;-)).

So, what is the difference?

Besides not getting the personal touch & feel with the other one, perhaps sitting right on an island in the Pacific or in Australia, or even somewhere in the same city where you are located, we are not used to take that kind of conversations as serious as personal ones. The webage has just arrived for the last couple of years (and not evenly spread across communities, societies or countries). Old economy thinking is still pretty focused on meetings, one-on-one talks, ..

The other shortcoming (or should I say benefit) is that in an online community you can step out of the conversation quite anonymously, looking from outside and -perhaps- step in again.

To be honest, I feel pretty comfortable in that new world, as it opens doors and windows that we couldn't even think of a few years ago. I certainly wouldn't have had contact with John Sterman of MIT Sloan, if the phone calls to the US wouldn't have been as cheap as now. No connection with SoL and going to the 3rd Global SoL Forum in Oman (everything worked over the net before the physical meeting). Talking with persons in a café (as we do recently on the LockSchuppen) takes into account the learnings from the online communities, inspirations and contacts and vice-versa gives feedback again.

So, my question to all is:

How do you feel doing a conversation over the group, use the chat or other ways of communication (other than plain language in physical meetings)?

How should the environment be in order to bring you value in what you want to achieve in life?

Best regards and always curious in making things easier and more joyful (work can be so joyful, it even wouldn't be called work anymore;-))


taken from a conversation at
Getting deeper into level 3/4 in online conversations?
Posted by Ralf Lippold on April 11, 2009 at 8:31am in General

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