Feedback sessions

Feedback sessions are a powerful tool for generating forward progress in any aspect of life. Even though I determined that iteration and feedback don’t work as a management tactic, I still think feedback sessions are important. One simple benefit is that regular feedback sessions force you to take action. It almost doesn’t matter what form […]

Better living through conversation

I’ve been spending a lot of time on the phone recently with various friends talking about what I’m thinking and where I’m going with my life and my career. After one recent phone call, I realized that I value such conversations because each conversation is an opportunity for me to evolve my understanding of the […]

But it’s just talking!

One of the things that many of my friends have been struggling with is that managers don’t really do anything. These friends are highly technical people, so when they think of doing something, they think of time spent in the lab, or coding on a computer, or building something. When they see a manager spending […]

Conversationalist

One of the skills I continue to work on is the art of conversation. This seems to be key to so many things I’m interested in, from management to communication to cognitive science. And it has the added benefit of being useful at parties! So what makes for a good conversationalist? One of the qualities […]

Group flow

I was telling a friend about the Buffy singalong today and mentioned that one of the reasons it was so enjoyable was because everybody in the theater was a Buffy fanatic, or at least Buffy-fanatic-friendly. Because the show had sold out earlier in the week, only the fanatics had tickets. And that created a really […]

The Art of Conversation

A few months ago, Wes made a comment about my post about good conversations where he linked the idea of flow with what I was looking for in conversation. I’ve been meaning to follow up on that comment for a long time, and tonight’s the night. Conversation is a topic near and dear to my […]

Collaborative selves

A couple days ago, I was trying to explain to my friend Wilfred the ideas of Latour; in particular, the notion of an iterative reality constructed via consultation. As a scientist, he was somewhat distressed by this idea, given that he believes in a Platonic reality, where there is a “real” world that we are […]