This is a communication workshop aimed primarily at developers or other technical people whose main focus is not communicating with others.
It's based on a lunchtime session I have run at the Guardian and is founded on the principles of non-violent communication. I will be asking participants to think about difficult conflicts they may have at work and using those situations during the exercises.
My argument is that most problems at work are problems of communication and collaboration. This is particularly pronounced in technology, where people are often employed for very different sets of skills than their ability to empathise and communication; the stereotype of the developer with their headphones on.
We can do a better job of communicating with one another if we take the time to understand what it is we say to others, why we say it and instead try to say what we really mean.
The workshop consists of a series of exercises aiming to dissect the way that most people unconsciously communicate and the aggression that naturally seeps in to a lot of our conversations.
It aims to make people aware of the impact poor communication can have and provide them with some practical tools to improve things and help build better relationships, which in turn will result in a happier work life.
We can let everyone win and the world won't end!
Robert is a development manager at the Guardian and former startup CTO and ThoughtWorks consultant. He got started in software development as a tester and, courtesy of a very flakey system, had enough free time to learn C and switch careers to software development. From there he's learnt that software delivery is really a question of working effectively together on the right idea rather than being the application of technology.
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