David Perkins, in his book, "King Arthur's Roundtable: How Collaborative Conversations Create Smart Organizations", defines organizational culture as the sum total of all conversations in an organization.
David Whyte (www.davidwhyte.com) recently spoke to the Colorado Leadership Collaborative. He talked about five courageous conversations leaders need to have within their organizations, and with themselves. He summed them up as:
"5. What is the courageous conversation we are not yet having with the unknown future - the world that lies over the horizon, but has not yet been fully articulated?
4. What is the courageous conversation we are not having with our clients or the society of which we are a part? This in effect is the future, now, the currents of people and events that flow around the organization and the endeavors of the individuals who make it up.
3. What is the courageous conversation we are not having between the different divisions and international cultures within the organization? What prevents us from taking another step in working together?
2. What is the courageous conversation I am not having with my immediate workgroup, or with my immediate supervisors, associates and subordinates? What is the courageous conversation I can personally initiate to start things moving in this immediate circle?
1. (The private conversation) What is the courageous conversation I am refusing to have with myself, in my own heart and mind with regard to my work, and the present life threshold on which I find myself? What is the courageous conversation I am not having with my partner or spouse, my children or loved ones?
This last question, though asked privately, is an essential foundation for all the other courageous conversations. It is very difficult to be passionate or sincere about the outer, more abstract questions, if a leader has neglected his or her own primary questions with regard to work and the part their work plays in the drama of their own story"
- Copyright, David Whyte.
Resonate with you? Read David's Book, "Crossing the Unknown Sea: Work as a Pilgrimage of Identity"