As someone whose career over the last three decades has spanned countries, cultures and industries (along with the face-to-face and virtual worlds), one thing that is important in creating effective virtual conversations is to “embrace your differences”.
Part of a great virtual conversation is that there is sufficient trust and connection amongst group members. Without this it’s likely that we are all going to disengage. In a virtual conversation we want to provide opportunities for individuals to both celebrate and honor the differences that exist, while also finding the common ground. While some people might think that this is a dichotomy, it really is more of a creative tension.
Practically it will involve you providing a series of different types of focus:
- A focus on self, and a focus on the group
- A focus on who I am uniquely as a group member, and a focus on what’s common with other group members
Chapter 7 of Effective Virtual Conversations provides a variety of instructions on different types of exercises you might incorporate across your virtual calls. Most can be adapted to have a focus on these areas for exploration.
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