Engaging Conversations Strategy

Dialogue is the place where work gets done, objectives are set, feedback given, problems resolved, support offered, and where trust and relationships are maintained. Putting the focus back on engaging conversations is key.It’s where a company’s brand comes to life.

Yet in many organisations these engaging conversations have been reduced to a mandatory, bureaucratic annual ‘Performance Management’ process, which is often disliked.

There is increasing recognition that a new approach is needed; one that puts the focus back on the conversation and that is designed to enhance learning and performance through empowerment, not management control.

Ci provides light-touch tools and resources that can be used to put the attention back where it belongs, building a coaching culture in which people-development is not a separate activity but is embedded in everyday work. You can expect some quick wins, as your best leaders identify ‘conversation gaps’ and close them. But be warned: Changing an entire organisation takes a little longer and requires a whole-system approach.

Our work typically has three parts: Insight (understanding the issues), Innovation (clarifying options) and Impact (testing and embedding support for better engaging conversations). This broad approach will be tailored to your organisation and can include:

  • Employee research insights and review of your current practices, to provide compelling evidence for change
  • Careful alignment with your organisation’s strategy and the need to build core capabilities
  • Benchmarks and learning from other leading organisations
  • Innovation workshops, including latest thinking on organisational and individual change
  • Skills workshops and train-the-trainer events (or coach-the-coach) to build skills for dialogue
  • High-impact tools and resources for leaders and teams, including the Engaging Conversations™ tool and practical conversation guides

The Ci team’s special expertise is in 1-1 career and development conversations, but an Engaging Conversations Strategy is often broader. It can encompass conversations with customers, suppliers, in virtual teams, or you may wish to start by improving the dynamics of your top team. When needed, we work with others who have special expertise in these areas.

What are the benefits?

  • Builds a core capability (dialogue) that enhances relationships with clients, suppliers and partners as well as employees
  • Rapidly increases employee engagement, retains talent and builds capability
  • You can make a start without first changing systems and processes
  • Our approach builds your capability, not dependency on outside consultants
  • Supported by online and/or printed resources and tools – conversations don’t have to be ‘difficult’!