March 27, 2011

Leadership Limerick: Dialogue and Decisions

Every Monday, I offer a leadership limerick, highlighting an idea or strategy about effective leadership in limerick form.

 You just might miss a key link
 If people do not say what they think

A safe space you must create
Supporting dissent and debate

So the quality of decisions doesn't sink.

We leave too many unexpressed good thoughts and insightful perspectives on the table.  For a variety of reasons, individuals do not feel comfortable sharing them in group conversations.  As a result, the thinking upon which our decisions are being made is incomplete and often inadequate.

Whenever you are leading or facilitating a conversation, it is important to think about what needs to be present for those who will be participating to freely speak their minds.  Only by building that container for good conversation, can the wisdom of the crowd emerge.

If you're interesting in honing your facilitation skills, I will be doing a one-day public seminar for the American Society of Association Executives in Washington, DC, on July 19.  It will be a highly interactive program exploring core concepts and techniques for effective facilitation and offering ample time for practical application and open discussion.  Learn more here.

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