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We are strange animals: part for ‘nature’ part for culture we learn through an action-reaction mechanism.

It’s all about feedback, it’s all about consequences: we do something, something happens due to what we do (or don’t do), we see these consequences and decide what to do.

Do you want to mess up a team, or your son, or a person you have a relationship with? Start not giving feedback or better giving random one: the consequence are certain … #fail

PierG

p.s. Please note that sometimes not giving feedback deliberately is a feedback itself (remember: you cannot not communicate)

Today I have to quote another interesting post by Seth Godin called “Why wasn’t I informed?”.

The basic concept around it is that:

The rules are now clear: no one is going to inform you, but it’s easier than ever to inform yourself.

 

Communication was traditionally made of 4 parts: the content, the sender, the media, the receiver.

Internet has disrupted this paradigm. Information in the digital age is all around us: no matter how we try to channel it, to transmit it, to organize it, to classify it … even in small company is so huge, so fast, so perishable that also the receiver has to play an active role.

Is this efficient? I don’t know but it’s like training: you can wait and complain of what no one is doing for you, or you can look around at the enormous set of possibilities the internet has given us and get it!

PierG

 

Last week I was at the Social Business Forum 2011. One of the best talk was by Philipp Schäfer of IDEO and it is about how IDEA has designed an internal Social Collaboration tool.

Here is the presentation.

View more presentations from SocialBizForum

PierG

Some time ago I wrote a post called Tips for better email management: it’s a set of suggestions on how to manage the bandwidth of your email traffic.

Today I’ve read an interesting post of Seth Godin called Email checklist (maybe this time it’ll work!). Seth list 36(!) items in his checklist: a little bit long but it worth the reading (if not using every time you are about to send an email 🙂 )

Three years ago this week, I posted this checklist, in the naive hope that it would eliminate (or perhaps merely reduce) the ridiculous CC-to-all emails about the carpool, the fake-charity forwards, the ALL CAPS yelling and the stupid PR spam.
A guy can hope, can’t he?

Thoughts?

PierG



Watching the video I suggested in one of my latest posts Learning is Not Knowledge Transfer, I grabbed the last two screens that are a very good lesson, in my opinion, for leaders, managers, coaches and educators around the world.

Talking about the learning experience, the author suggests in fact:

  • Resources and not courses: give the persons the possibility (= time, possibility to make mistakes, …) to learn as a fulfilling experience, pulling the learnings from this experience and not pushing info in their brains
  • Make people care enough to learn … tough one … or not? 🙂

    And this means, for leaders, managers, coaches and educators: inspire! passion! motivate! build confidence!

    Give the video a try: it’s short and good.

    PierG

    This week end I’ve re-read an old (2006 🙂 ) post by Guy Kawasaki about called The 120 Day Wonder: How to Evangelize a Blog. I’ve encountered it again reading the Occam’s Razor blog by Avinash Kaushik.

    In the post (that I suggest to fully read), Guy writes down a list of 10 items he thought were meaningful to write a successful blog. It was 2006 and he was not much in the blogging arena but here is what he thought, being a great innovator and communicator:

    1. Think “book” not “diary”: from day one think about spreading the word
    2. Answer the little man: is your blog a good product?
    3. Collect email addresses
    4. Collect links for blog rolling: to link with interesting blogs on the same topics
    5. Scoop stuff: eat like a bird, poop like an elephant
    6. Supplement other bloggers with a follow up entries: help others to spread the word
    7. Acknowledge and respond to comments: you do care
    8. Ask for help: if you give value, ask your readers if you need
    9. Be bold: speak your mind
    10. Make it easy to jump in!!

    I think most of these ideas are still of great help: what’s your experience? As a reader or as a blogger what would you change 5 years after? How can this be applied to internal communication in corporations?

    PierG


    Courtesy of lolandese, Some Rights Reserved

    When you become a manager, the first temptation you have to fight is micromanagement: it’s particularly dangerous in technical fields.

    When you become manager of managers (huge change), the first temptation you have to fight is what I call the ‘Dive In Sindrome’: it’s this evolution of micromanagement where you dive into the organization bypassing levels of hierarchy to close the loop directly with the individual contributors.

    You cannot substitute your managers to manage their people, and I think there is a huge value in keeping in touch directly with what the individual contributor know, do, feel. And this for a set of reasons:

    1. you need to know what they have understood about what’s your vision (= how you scale the Company Vision to your team) of things: communication is feedback so you need to get it for what’s the strategic for the company;
    2. you need to keep you spider-sense alive at operational levels: as much as you get far from everyday operations that’s a plus that can enrich your capability to choose strategically with scarce resources;
    3. you need to know what they think about their bosses: nothing personal, but you have to gather any possible info to help them (your directs) to growth and be better … or find a company that’s more suitable for them.

    The question for you is: how much is too much? How much should your boss dive in the organization and how frequently? Share with us your idea of The Art of Diving In.

    PierG

    I had the chance to watch John Medina at AuthorsGoogle and learn an interesting concept about how to give feedback to children to improve their chance to have a bright future at school.

    Here is the wrong and right feedback you can give your son when he gets back home with ‘good news’:

    NO: you’ve got an A, I’m so proud of you, you are so smart
    YES: you’ve got an A, I’m so proud of you, you must have studied really hard

    Now let’s see some of the differences:

    1. you are so smart’ is personal. It is you being something. What happens when you get a C? It’s you being something wrong (stupid?)
    2. you are so smart’ doesn’t lead to a growth mindset behavior. In fact if you get a C, what should you do? How can you be smart again? How can you grow from this situation?

    The ‘you must have studied really hard’, when you get a C, decouple you from the problem + lead to a solution: you have to study harder or in a different way. This enables a growth mindset behavior.

    Can you imagine situations, in your working experience, where this kind of feedback can be beneficial? I’m sure you do!

    PierG

    In my las post Pairing can be Unconsciously Powerful, I commented an article (Research shows that two people can learn to cooperate intuitively, but larger groups need to communicate) and explained how …

    working in pair you can create what’s called rapport: one of the most important features or characteristics of subconscious communication. It is commonality of perspective: being “in sync” with, or being “on the same wavelength” as the person with whom you are talking. This goes beyond written rules or pre-set methods. As the sync is at the unconscious level, pairing can be unconsciously powerful

    Now is this rapport what you really want when, for example, you are pairing in a pair programming session? Yes and no

    Yes: if this means establishing a trustful and proactive relationship where the fight to achieve an excellent result takes place;

    No: if this means not adding to the couple the necessary tension. This tension is the generative sparkle of the relationship. A good example of this deviation in the case of pair programming is what Francesco define with mamma programming where the two are looking for mutual protection and reciprocal approval.

    Feedback?

    PierG

    Lately I was attracted by post on Lifehacker called Two People Cooperate Intuitively; Larger Groups Need to Make a Conscious Effort to Communicate. Having done some studying on hypnosis, I was curios and so I read the article that was quoted in that post called: Research shows that two people can learn to cooperate intuitively, but larger groups need to communicate.

    The result of this research of the University of Leicester can be summarized by the first sentence:

    Two people can learn to cooperate with each other intuitively without communication or any conscious intention to cooperate. But this process breaks down in groups of three or more.

    Two interesting concepts (from a work point of view):

    1. working in pair you can create what’s called rapport: one of the most important features or characteristics of subconscious communication. It is commonality of perspective: being "in sync" with, or being "on the same wavelength" as the person with whom you are talking. This goes beyond written rules or pre-set methods. As the sync is at the unconscious level, pairing can be unconsciously powerful.
    2. moving from two to infinite need a shift from an “unconscious mind based communication” to a “conscious mind based communication”. Here the conscious mind enter the fray applying all sort of filters due to presuppositions, different values, different experiences and so on. These filters generate different ‘views of the word’ and so a common map to walk in this word is needed.

    PierG

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