“Working with you brought a very positive momentum to our organization and we are well on the way to becoming a powerful team,” said the head of marketing.
It happened at the end of the first workshop I facilitated in my new role as an entrepreneur. In 2019, after 20+ years as manager in large and small businesses, I decided to turn over a new leaf and help leaders in other organizations overcome their business challenges. The time was just before the pandemic. Inside, I was full of emotion after leaving a job I loved and giving up a monthly paycheck, and at the same time full of entrepreneurial spirit to start something new.
I have always wanted to be able to innovate and be creative to help others solve real business problems through means of communication.
I hoped to prove that we can make an impact simply by having better conversations.
Why focus on conversations, you may ask? Having worked in communications for most of my life and supported countless change projects in companies, I have found that change only becomes concrete when the point of communication is reached. When completing my PhD in the UK, I researched the perspective that communication is not primarily something that happens within organizations or between organizational members. Instead, communication is the process whereby organizations are constituted — arguing that change and impact, rather than being fixed in advance, are reflexively constituted within the act of conversation itself.
In today’s VUCA world, it’s this view of business change that works and inspires rather than frustrates participants.
Rethinking communication leads to better ways of dealing with challenges.
The new approach to communication is gaining momentum. I now get to work with a range of executives and teams, in a broad range of industries from manufacturing to healthcare and from banking to social enterprises. Large and small companies in Liechtenstein, Switzerland, Southern Germany and Austria.
In the process, I observe that managers repeatedly approach me with similar challenges:
- Managers taking on new teams and striving for a new, shared direction.
- Teams moving beyond agile ways of working to reduce overload and create flow.
- Companies that want to become more impactful with their strategy or take a step towards becoming a learning organization.
I believe the following principles, which also guide my actions, are helpful in solving these challenges:
- Being aware of the meaning and purpose of every entrepreneurial action enables clear decisions.
- Generative communication leads to healthy and vibrant organizations.
- Energy for change is sustained when the leader or leadership team changes their mindset, too.
- To understand complex systems, we must take time for sense-making, looking at problems from multiple perspectives.
- Culture is measurable and the ultimate proof of success in the VUCA world.
Develop your business in a communicative way.
Better conversations are more inspiring and create more impact.
It’s an inner journey every leader should embark on.