Listening and Feedback

March 4th, 2024

As a mediator and conflict resolution specialist, working on some exciting and complex situations has been my pleasure. After one session between two boards of directors, the chairman of one of the boards complimented me by saying I am not a problem solver, but rather a solution provider.

I did not know what he meant by that comparison, so I asked him. He explained this to me. Given his comments and several years of reflection on the difference between problem solver and solution provider, along with the experience of many negotiations and mediations, I want to share some thoughts with you.

These thoughts are related to this topic and might help you when you find yourself in a conflict or negotiation. 

February 12th, 2024
A listening ear

As a conflict resolution and negotiation specialist I know how important listening is related to conflict resolution, alternative dispute resolution, and collaboration. In my book The Collaboration Effect I comment that the most important chapter is on listening. Seeing an emotionally charged commentary on listening from a friend of mine I wanted to share this with you and expand on this topic to help you. Dr. Jemaine Davis shares that coming from a gang-infested area he obtained his PhD, but his younger brother made some bad choices to survive. All his younger brother ever wanted was to have someone listen to him. Think of how powerful that statement is. I know everyone wants to be respected and listened to. Think about this with our very divided nation. What if regardless of the conflict we made a constructive attempt to listen to the other party?

February 13th, 2023
Four hands coming together with a fist pump

When you think about negotiations, you may think about a lot of things, but have you thought about racism and what it costs? I am not talking simply about bias. I have blogged on Women and Salary Negotiations, Business Valuers, the IRS, and Conflict Resolution – Part 1 and Part 2, Why Emotions Matter in Negotiations, and Conflict and Dispute Resolution in Cross Cultural Negotiations. These and related posts all tie into the cognitive, conscious, and unconscious bias we all have. Have you ever thought how much racial bias is costing our society? It all has to do with the big lie.

August 20th, 2021
Two black silhouettes in deep discussion with a skyline in the background

To hear the expert or read the transcript from an expert in the field check out this 15-minute Ted Talk by Dr. Adar Cohen on “3 ways to lead, tough, unavoidable conversations”.  Having watched the video and read the transcript I wanted to share with you his three rules, but also add some additional information based on over 2,500 mediations and negotiations coupled with over 25 of years of management experience at all levels.  

August 8th, 2021
four people sitting around a table with one person speaking and the others listening intently

For both collaboration and conflict resolution listening actively is key to understanding. All to often you have what we want to say on the top of your agenda and what you want to have happen as your primary position. However, if you want to truly collaborate and/or address conflict resolution, the real key is to listen actively. This article provides you with six key attributes to listen actively. Based on this commentary you can act to constructively apply these six key attributes to promote both collaboration and conflict resolution.

May 18th, 2021
A handshake between two hands with various words on the hands and arms like cooperate and connect

The Collaboration Effect is all about finding ways to collaborate with others for better outcomes. A key element for collaboration with others is parties engaging with each other. Leaders know this and foster collaboration. The Collaboration Effect is all about connecting relationships, listening actively, and educating judiciously to build bridges and negotiate closure This article takes a deeper dive into reaching out to others, engaging with others, and finding ways to really connect based on their needs.

April 6th, 2021
A large ball with many faces on the ball being photographed by a smart phone

Who does not know what working virtually means today? Working with zoom, Microsoft teams, WebEx, and other vendors nearly everyone has been on a virtual meeting of one sort or another. The question is what you can do to collaborate better with others going forward in our virtual world. When virtual teams work well together here are some of the statistics worth noting.

September 22nd, 2020
Alberta Canada reflection of sky and mountains on lake

Have you ever been in a conflict with someone about something and wanted to either prevent the situation from escalating, tone down the rhetoric, or wanted to de-escalate a tense situation? There are ways to address each of these types of situations. Ideas are presented here. From the book Peaceful Resolutions Chapter two focuses on The Art of De-escalation. Elements of that chapter are being offered here to help with each of these three situations.

April 29th, 2019
Overcome potential conflicts before the next economic downturn by building

The Harvard Business Review (HBR) is suggesting now is the time to plan for the next economic downturn. Leading economic indicators are pointing downward. When an economic downturn takes place and you are in the thick of it, you will need to focus on tactics and day to day operations.  Now is the time to plan, be proactive and collaborate with key stakeholders.

March 11th, 2019
A wild deer head and neck visible in the photo with ears up attentively listening

The Collaboration Effect enhances relationshiips, resources and revenues. In incorporates connecting relationships, actively listening, judiciously educating and negotiating closure. This article focuses on actively listening.

February 18th, 2019
Multiple colored hands from all directions pointing towards the center

In today’s rapidly changing fast paced world what does inclusion mean?  Whether this be ethnic, racial, cultural, class, religious, disability, sexual orientation, gender or generational there is a clear focus on diversity in the workplace, but diversity by itself does not mean inclusion.  This article looks at how to go from simply hiring for diversity to inclusion where everyone feels valued.  

February 11th, 2019
key words associated with coach, advising, motivation, teaching etc.

All too often we try to do things by ourselves. The old axiom on the American way is that “we should pull ourselves up by our own bootstraps”. Well that may work well with boots, but it takes a village to enhance skills. This is especially true when it comes to soft skills, or what I refer to as the critical skills.