“Talking to your computer as if it were human”

women Oct 06, 2017

 Conversational Intelligence® is even more important in the gig economy and tech start up work world.

Have you ever received an email where the writer sets out their point of view without any regard for what you might think?  A popular term for interactions now is UX or User experience, and I attended a great conference (for women) in London Ontario.  …but more about that later

Recently, I spent an hour hearing all about Conversational Intelligence® from world class experienced business leaders and coaches as part of this year’s online WBECS leadership conference.  Led by Len Rothman, of Leadership @ Work, we discussed how conversations can be used to get into the work flow and feel really good about it.

He asked us to start by thinking about a time when we felt anxious or angry and then about a time when we felt really good.  Have you tried listening to understand? I think a lot of people listen to figure out what they are going to say next. I think people still write emails that way. Rather than thinking about what the outcome they want, I think, they let writing the email become a process that examines how they feel about the topic and maybe even the person, rather than concentrating on creating an end product that gets the response they want. From my days in direct marketing copywriting, I learned the importance making a clear request, establishing a connection and ending with a specific call to action.

For independent practitioners in the gig economy, often it’s hard to get a conversation with your client or co workers, especially if you are working remotely. And if you are a minority on a team that isn’t equitably diverse then you might not feel like you can talk to your colleagues because they might not understand where you are coming from. Often women “don’t fit” in tech cultures because they are not one of the guys. 

Len talked about how if you are following your own music, according to fellow WBECs presenter Peter Hopkins, then you can be a leader and actually generate the flow experienced in a group, much like an old-fashioned preacher, popular TedTalk speaker or even a popular politician.  So how can you follow your own music?

First, practice a short meditation.

Then ask discovery/open-ended probing questions.

Then take a risk. (It’s ok to ask for permission first.)

You don’t need to know the answer (and in fact there might not even be a right answer).  Judith E. Glasser, author of the book Conversational Intelligence® says there is nothing wrong with bad ideas in idea generation, and in fact bad ideas tend to encourage great ideas. She also talks about how creating flow can create an exciting chemistry.  I know I’ve experienced when I’ve been fortunate to be in the shadow of political leaders, astronauts, and corporate leaders.

The coolest thing is that once you’ve created innovative flow with a group, you can use the same strategy on yourself! 

For other tips on leadership skills for women to overcome the challenges, register for two weeks of interviews delivered to your inbox at Sign up for Women Leaders Take Flight

To connect with Len Rothman, go to https://www.linkedin.com/in/lenrothman/

You can order a copy of Judith E. Glaser’s book Conversational Intelligence® at http://www.conversationalintelligence.com/endorsements-reviews

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