Human Connection – could it be a silver bullet?
“A future made up of complex, chaotic environments is less suited to the problem solving of lone, decisive authority figures than it is to the distributed efforts of smart, flexible leadership networks.” – Nick Petrie, Future Trends in Leadership Development, Center for Creative Leadership
We’ve heard this lament so many times – the world is getting increasingly complex, business is moving and shifting at an alarmingly fast pace, start-ups and industry disrupters are popping up out of nowhere. The ability to be agile, creative and flexible has never been more important. Meanwhile, back at HQ, we all still mostly sit around in our neatly ordered departments operating in an outdated hierarchy with baffling layers of bureaucracy. We merrily pass decisions up and down sign-off chains, with departments and, sometimes even colleagues, emailing each other because it’s easier than actually talking. The impact of this is a sense of dehumanisation. A sense of being removed from each other. New ideas wither in these adverse conditions. All the while, the C-Suite is left wondering why their company isn’t collaborative, innovative or responding well to changing customer’s demands.
Human connection seems to lie at the heart of this. How do we encourage it, nurture it, and maintain it? This is the next big topic in the Organisational Development world. Healthy functioning, well connected, networked teams are much better placed to operate in this new world. They can anticipate and respond more effectively, and help keep spirits up whilst doing so.
What does the research tell us about the value of human connection? MIT’s Human Dynamics Laboratory used electronic devices to track direct human connections. The research states that “With remarkable consistency, the data confirmed that communication indeed plays a critical role in building successful teams. In fact, we’ve found patterns of communication to be the most important predictor of a team’s success. Not only that, but they are as significant as all the other factors—individual intelligence, personality, skill, and the substance of discussions—combined.”
Yes, but can we really call it a silver bullet? So, we know there is hard evidence, human connection is absolutely fundamental to the success of today’s teams, but as with most things in life, there is no such thing as a free lunch. Silver bullet it may be, but developing human connection in teams is complex and requires work and commitment to encourage and maintain. Fostering greater human connection is a slow art and we would like to invite you to a unique opportunity to begin mastering it with USA based, Matrix Leadership Institute.
In March 2018, Veldhoen + Company and the Matrix Leadership Institute are presenting a Sydney based workshop training in practical tools to strengthen communication and build resilience; facilitating shifts in mindset and culture designed to foster highly creative, collaborative and emergent teams.
The Matrix Leadership model invites personal reflection and a commitment to a greater whole, so it definitely isn’t a silver bullet either, but we believe it is an incredible social technology that has the power to foster deep human connection and strong, flexible leadership networks in your organisation. Personally speaking, it has been one of the most profound shifts I have had in how I view the art of work. We hope you will join us to learn how.
Veldhoen + Company, Australia, also offer a rich and informative 2 day ABW Masterclass in March. Come along to learn how to create a successful Activity Based Working programme, learn what it takes and what strategies you need to make it work.
If this topic interests you, we also have the following articles:
- 3 Challenging Reasons why you should adopt Activity Based Working
- How can you reinvent your culture with Activity Based Working?
- HR as an Employee Sponsor in Activity Based Working programmes