Its all ball bearings – and it starts with a conversation

Its amazing to me what power a simple conversation has.  Conversations can build an incredibly powerful company culture, Conversations can lead to life-changing decisions.  Conversations can turn into fist fights.  Conversations can make your sales number for the year.

Its pretty simple when you think about it.  It all starts with a conversation.  The first time I really heard this was from John Dragoon (CMO at Novell).  John is one of those great presenters that can stand up on a stage in front of 1000 people and give a kickass presentation with nothing but slides with pictures and no words.  You come away remembering exactly what he said, what the point was, and what you can take away.  It feels like a conversation, I think, because he makes a connection with the audience that is authentic.

I read a lot, and recently a lot of that reading has been to understand the industry perspectives and trends as they relate to digital advertising, social content, and media.  As I write this, I’m attending the OMMA Global conference in NYC.  Much of the talk here is about the scarcity of attention and the need to engage in the conversation.  Conversations and authenticity matter in marketing and sales and in running a company.  Even if a conversation is brief, as long as its authentic and honest, that works for me.

What its not:

Its not a conversation if no one participates.  Check your tweet views, blog comments, or stats if you want third party confirmation.  Now for those of you with tons of the above: filter out your groupies and then look again.

Wasted conversations are like the plague.  Improve actors and sales people know this better than anyone.  Ditto for conversations that have a contrarian participant being that way just to be contrarian.  Wasted time and energy sucks.

What it should be:

An opportunity.  Every interaction is a chance to have a real conversation.  Sometimes they’re short (messaging service).

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