Best Advice: Establish Dialogue and Invest in Communication

"Earth thinking or talking". Freedigitalphotos.net.
“Earth thinking or talking”. Freedigitalphotos.net.

This may sound a little bit idealistic, but when I go to my blog, my Facebook page, my Twitter account, I talk to different people from all over the world, and you see how it’s easy to establish a dialogue. (Author Paulo Coelho)

Whether you are an author aspiring to become a living legend such as Paulo Coelho, an entrepreneur looking for new clients, representing a brand or an organization/corporation – establishing dialogue and investing in communication are essential for forming partnerships, creating lasting relationships, and for success.

“The new information technology… Internet and e-mail… have practically eliminated the physical costs of communications”. (Peter Drucker)

How do you establish dialogue and communicate online (and offline)?

Are you aware of the actual potential and value of online media, social networks, and a continuously growing online business platform such as LinkedIn? LinkedIn as an online business communication and networking platform offers more than many people and professionals have realized.

As an example of this, I want to share with you my experience of collaboration with a number of business professionals from around the world – people who I approached on LinkedIn.

What started out as an endeavor to establish dialogue online, resulted in MBA Career Stories, a free online publication which you can access here:

http://bitly.com/MBACareersAMY

MBA Career Stories was written in collaboration by 33 MBA´s with different career and life paths across the globe. The e-publication serves as a career guide not only for aspiring MBA´s or students in general, but offers career, and life advice for practically anyone who enjoys reading true stories.

Extracts and best advice from MBA Career Stories:

“Always take action. You can take further corrective later if needed. This keeps your business moving forward and it is something that a customer likes to see”.

“Build relationships even with your competitors, as you never know how you can help one another”.

“Always build your network and consciously keep extending your reach”.

“Continuous learning and self-development is vital in today’s work”.

“Remember that you have two ears and one mouth” (Japanese proverb)

“Remember that you have two eyes, too”!

“Don’t ask for permission to be successful! What you choose to do with your life is not based on your parents expectations, what your teachers thought you were capable of, what your husband or partner thinks you should do or even what your friends are doing with their lives. It is all about what moves and inspires you. You should never need anyone else to tell you what that is or should be”.

http://bitly.com/MBACareersAMY

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Virtues and Sins Part 2: Patience vs. Wrath

Have you ever felt impatient? Full of wrath, not knowing how to calm down or how to relax? Letting off steam in a proper manner e.g. through regular physical activities is good for anyone´s health, but if and when we do exercise wrath in maliscious ways, we end up harming not only others around us but most of all ourselves. Do you agree?

Having the gift of the tongue may be helpful in some situations, but playing a smart aleck can sometimes turn against you. Therefore, patience and the ability of listening, truly attentive listening often brings one further and enhances the birth of a true dialogue.

Then, what is a dialogue? And how is it related to patience and wrath? Simple questions, non?

A few years ago I had the privilege of attending a class held by Shawn Spano, Ph.D., about communication and dialogue at SJSU in Silicon Valley. According to Spano, there are many different approaches to dialogue. As an example, he used a unique form of human communication relating it to the social construction theory.

“Communication is the process through which we collectively create our social worlds. Rather than see communication as a neutral vehicle for transmitting information from one person to another, social construction treats communication as a primary activity, one that not only reflects meaning but shapes it as well”.

Seen from this perspective, everything comprising our social worlds (emotions, personalities, relationships, beliefs, attitudes, identities etc.) are being created in patterns of communication.

Social construction in key words:

– Individuals co-construct their social worlds through communication processes

– Communication is a process of action, not only transmission of information

– To widen the boundaries of people´s social worlds, there is a need to create communication bridges in-between these.

DIFFERENCES BETWEEN ARGUMENT AND DIALOGUE:

In Argument we…:

  • Try to win
  • Compete for speaking time
  • Speak for others
  • Create a potentially threatening and uncomfortable environment
  • Take sides with others
  • Polarize ourselves from those with whom we disagree
  • Feel unswerving commitment to a point of view
  • Ask questions to make a point or put the other person down
  • Make predictable statements
  • Make simplistic statements
  • COMPETE

In dialogue, we…:

  • Try to understand
  • Value listening
  • Speak from personal experience
  • Create an atmosphere of safety
  • Discover differences even among those with whom we agree
  • Discover shared concerns between ourselves and others
  • Discover our uncertainties as well as deeply held beliefs
  • Ask questions out of true curiosity and the desire to know more
  • Discover significant new things
  • Explore the complexity of the issues being discussed
  • COLLABORATE

(Source: http://www.publicconversations.org)

Once again: what has this got to do with patience and wrath?

Just about everything, since we all have the ability of constructing our social worlds through our means of communication. Communication and dialogue are at the core of every individual´s and organization´s success, but still, more often than not, undervalued.

Through the development of communication and dialogue we can all become successful at what we do, both in business and private.

For more information, feel free to contact me and to comment my posts. I love being in dialogue with people.