Becoming effective through communicative action
"Working with you has given our organization a very positive boost, and we are well on our way to becoming a powerful team."
That's what my client, a marketing executive, said at the end of the first workshop I facilitated in my new role as an entrepreneur. In 2019, after more than 20 years in large and small companies, where I was a long-time communications leader myself, I decided to turn over a new leaf and help leaders in other organizations overcome their business challenges. This was just before the pandemic. We were talking about the VUCA world, but real crises weren't as evident yet. Inside, it was an emotional time, having left a job I liked and foregone a monthly paycheck. At the same time, I was full of entrepreneurial spirit to create something new. So that feedback encouraged me: It was the right move for me.
I've always wanted to be able to innovate and be creative to help others with their Solving real business problems to help with means of communication.
How can we advance business and society by communicating better and more effectively with each other?
Why focus on dialogue and collaboration, you may ask? Having worked in communications most of my life and led countless change projects in organizations, I have seen time and again that change only becomes concrete when the point of communication is reached. During my PhD in the UK, I explored the perspective that communication is not primarily something that happens within organizations or between organizational members. Instead, communication is the process by which organizations come into being - arguing that change and impact are not a foregone conclusion, but are reflexively constituted through the act of dialogue.
In today's VUCA world, it's this view of business change that simply works, inspiring participants rather than frustrating them. Visit huebner.io for more information.
Rethinking communication makes it easier to overcome challenges.
The new approach to communication is gaining momentum. I now get to work with a number of executives and teams, in a wide range of applications 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 approach me again and again with similar challenges:
- Leaders who take on new teams and seek a new, shared direction.
- Teams that go beyond agile ways of working to reduce overload and create flow
- Companies that want to become more effective with their strategy or take a step towards becoming a learning organization.
I believe that 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.
- Communication from which new things emerge leads to healthy and vibrant organizations.
- The energy for change is maintained when the boss or leadership team also changes themselves.
- To complex systems to understand, we need to take time for sensemaking, looking at problems from different perspectives.
- Culture is measurable and the ultimate proof of success in the VUCA world.