4 Conversations Dominating The Workplace

May 5, 2014 in Etiquette Tips, Home

I recently came across a phenomenal workplace communication model, The 4 Workplace Conversations designed by Skip Weisman, a leadership & communication expert. According to Weisman 75% of these workplace conversations keep organizations stuck, limit growth and can create negative, toxic work environments:

Wrong Conversation With Wrong Person (Lower Left Quadrant):
This is the “toxic” zone quadrant and what Weisman calls BMWs (Bitching, Moaning & Whining). This is where people moan and vent to the wrong people. These people don’t move beyond to have the right conversations with the right people to move forward with issues, and concerns.

Wrong Conversation With Right Person (Lower Right Quadrant):
This is the “missed opportunity” quadrant. It takes time, energy and resources to get in front of the right person. Yet, for many different the conversation gets hijacked by the right person for their own agenda or because of a stronger personality. So you end up having the wrong conversation with the right person – a missed opportunity.

Right Conversation With Wrong Person (Upper Left Quadrant)
The potential outcomes for this conversation, is it can create a “path” to the right person, through asking for a referral, role playing or looking for advice. If, this scenario recurs frequently and never moves to the right person, it becomes procrastination from your side.

Right Conversation With Right Person (Upper Right Quadrant)
This quadrant is where problems get solved, issues get resolved and progress is made because people are having the right conversation with the right person at the right time. We should aim for our conversations to be at this level.

Weisman suggests you use The 4 Workplace Conversations visual to coach yourself and others to make your workplace conversations more effective by discussing where on the chart they are taking place, then developing ways to move as many conversations as quickly as possible to the top half of the model, and ideally to the upper right.


About Skip Weisman

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