Levels of Intimacy in Communication LO18695

Mark Hodierne (markh@hodierne-group.com)
Wed, 22 Jul 1998 10:46:41 +1200

Replying to LO18639 --

I'd like to contribute something that has made a great deal of sense to me
about communication. I quote from "The Next Choice: Controls or
Connections" by Tony Richardson and Jock Macneish (available from Don't
Press Publications in Australia http://www.dontpress.com)...

"Harrison Owen suggests that there are five levels of communication. Each
has its place.

"The deepest is intuition. It comes out of the depth of our person. A
little less deep are our visions and things for which we feel passion.
Less deep again is what we sense as aesthetic and understand in fresh ways
with new language. The norn of communication is around logic, argument
and reason. A basis of communication comes from data and common sense.

"Within a workplace, the day to day level of communication will be logic,
argument and reason. But sometimes this becomes tired and there is an
increase of words with decreasing communication. When this happens we
usually go less deep. We call for more data.

"This is the point where Harrison Owen suggests we do something
counter-intuitive. We should try going deeper. Do something which
rejuvenates language, shares vision or pursues issues or opportunities
about which people have a passion.

"To sustain connections we need to refuel communications occasionally."

These ideas have provided good confirmation for my consulting work with
organisations. Taking a 'whole systems' approach where 'the system is in
the room' creates conditions for these deeper levels of communication
between (often) diverse stakeholder groups. I have always believed in the
value of moving people away from analytic environments - where there is
security in data - to find more creative environments - where we can
supplement our collective knowledge with passion and intuition. Under
these conditions we have much better chances of success to bring about
sustainable changes in our workplaces.

Great thread. Thanks for all the contributions.

Mark Hodierne



"Mark Hodierne" <markh@hodierne-group.com>

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