The point is to understand the supernatural power of dialogue.
Crucial Conversations are
- The options vary
- Stakes are high
- Emotions run strong
In companies, the path to productivity passes not through a static system but face-to-face conversations at all levels. The very best ones at the ones that have developed the skills for dealing effectively with communications that relate to:
- Every Other Hot Topic
They do all the same things about these that others do, but it is how they handle something when someone does something wrong in any of these areas. They don’t wait for the policy to kick in or for a superior to do something. People step up, speak up regardless of rank and thus thrive; making it easy for the company to move on.
The key to succeeding in crucial conversations is that there will be the free flow of relevant information. It works by creating a pool of shared meaning. In other words, each person in the conversation has their pool or paradigm (backgrounds, opinions, political leanings, etc.) But for there to be the success, you must create a pool from everyone else’s pool. This is important because as the pool grows, it helps people in two ways:
- People make better choices since they are exposed to more information both accurate and relative
- People will willing act on whatever decisions they make because by sharing all the information in the shared pool they are participating in the free flow of meaning, which leads to understanding why the shared solution is best and finally, they are committed to acting.
However, this does not mean that every decision needs consensus; it simply means that whatever the decision-making method, the greater the shared meaning pool, the better the decisions will be. You can learn how to have crucial fruitful conversations, by learning to:
- Create conditions of dialogue focusing on how we think about the problem situations and what we do to prepare for them.
- Examining tools for talking, listening and acting together in crucial conversations (How do I present delicate information? How do I speak persuasively? etc.)
The rest of the book focuses on these two things with more technical depth to create new habits for you that you can begin applying immediately.
- Clarify what you want to have to happen
- Focus on what is happening
- Creating conditions of safety using self-awareness and self-knowledge
- Learning how to create a mutual level of understanding and create a synergy that makes people emotionally connected to the conclusions reached and are emotionally willing and committed to implementing them effectively.
Basically, you are: