Real knowledge does not exist within us but between us, in our conversations is something I’ve felt for a long time. So with that, if we want to create more knowledge, we need to create more conversations.
In principle it’s that easy. However the practice, although simple, is much harder to do.
To create conversations we must understand what it means to converse. To be equals, to listen, to communicate without agenda. The barriers to real conversation today are not physical or even technological, they are cerebral. Ego, power, fear and positioning get in the way. Because of these, most conversations are only labeled as such when in reality they are just carefully crafted monologues devoid of empathy, compassion or respect for another’s perspective and history. In these communications information is shared but this information can struggle to become actionable knowledge because this transfer happens best when there is a human connection.
Ask yourself – when did you last have a true conversation and who was it with? In all likelihood it was with others you respected, trusted and enjoyed. The outcome was likely mutually fruitful and satisfying.
Now imagine if you could have these at work with peers and leaders alike. It starts with you.