I often get criticized when I talk about the power of conversation.
People conclude that I think conversation will solve all our problems and nothing else is needed.
Or that I am ruling out debate or other powerful forms of human interaction.
I am not.
Conversation is not a panacea for everything. It can too easily descend into chit-chat and people being too nice to each other and not confronting the real issues.
It can be dull and boring or a conversation can turn quickly to an intellectual scrap where relationships are destroyed.
There are also the problems of Groupthink and Group polarization
We should not throw the baby out with the bath water. We need to recognise these problems and limitations and learn to engage more positively in conversation and to architect more powerful conversations.
This is what Conversational Leadership is all about.
Douglas Adams got it right when he said: "It is a mistake to think you can solve any major problems just with potatoes."
The world is far too complex to think that there is a single solution to anything but conversation is one tool that we too often overlook.