Authentic Conversations: Moving from Manipulation to Truth and Commitment: Moving from Manipulation to Truth and Commitment


    This book takes a radical new look at the potentially transformational role of workplace conversations . Through over twenty-five years of work as organizational consultants, Maren and James Showkier have discovered that conversation has the power to create, sustain or change organizational culture. But much of the time the kind of organizational culture these conversations sustain is one that stymies growth and erodes commitment. The problem is that traditional workplace conversations reflect an organizational culture based on a kind of parent-child model, with leaders treating employees as children who needed caretaking and protecting rather than as capable adults who needed to participate in creating a successful organization and own their accountability for finding solutions. As a result, the kinds of conversations leaders have with employees, and employees have with each other, just perpetuate this dysfunctional dynamic. With this book, the Showkiers help people understand how parent-child conversations and cultures are undermining our organizations' chances for success in the marketplace. They explore the myths and traditions that have created and maintained parent-child cultures and provide information and tools to help transform the harmful parent-child dynamic into authentic, adult-to-adult conversations. They examine the importance of intentions, language and confronting difficult issues while maintaining goodwill. The Showkiers begin with a credible, marketplace-oriented business case for changing conversations. In today's competitive world, it's not enough to advocate for change just because it's the right thing to do. Change has to show up in improved business results, and they show how moving away from a parent-child organizational dynamic can yield impressive bottom-line results. Once they make the business case they expose three distinct parent-child relationship dynamics that are supported and perpetuated by traditional types of conversations, and examine the outcomes they generate, their effect on people and culture and the price the organization pays for their continuance. They take a look at how language is used for effect and manipulation and how focusing on our intentions and choosing different language allows us to have conversations that center on disclosure and engagement. They offer ways to identify harmful conversations and provide outlines for replacing them with honest, productive conversations. The issues this book addresses apply to any organization. How do you move from a parent/child culture to an adult/adult culture? How can people recognize the damage that is wreaked by manipulative conversation techniques and learn ways to engage others in authentic conversations aimed at collaboration and partnership? How do we eliminate the traditional leadership conversations aimed at manipulation, caretaking and control and create collaborative, engaging conversations that value people's experience? How can we create an organizational culture that maximizes the potential of the entire organization? These and other questions answered in this book are relevant to organizations today and in the foreseeable future.

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    Number of Pages: 240
    Format(s): Paperback - ISBN: 9781576755952
    Publication Date:
    Listed in: Office & workplace
    Publisher: Berrett-Koehler

    Books by Maren Showkeir


    RRP: £12.99

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