A Conversation Shines the Light

When you need to find common ground, a conversation shines the light.

Talking with Group A:

“Oh, they’ll [the “others” in Group B] never go for that.”
“Have you asked them yet?”
“Well, no. We tried to get a meeting and they declined.”
“What about just quickly posting your questions?”
“Oh, OK.”

Later, talking to Group B:

“What do you think about the proposal?”
“Well, we had some alternate ideas but they [the “others” in Group A] would never want that.”
“Oh? What did they say when you brought it up?”
“We haven’t talked to them about it yet.”

Facepalm moment for me as the facilitator. It turned out the two groups hadn’t ever connected on this topic. Once a conversation shined a light on it, we saw the shared goal in plain sight. Assumptions dissolved.

Alignment is knowing versus thinking we know.

To put this visually, here are my quick-and-simple sketches for how I’ve come to think about alignment by “shining the light.”

What starts with a plan…

A plan without alignment is a question mark.

Becomes a moment of alignment:

A moment of alignment.

Group A is shining a light; Group B is shining their light back. It can be blinding.

3 lights-before.jpg
Groups shining the light at each other.

After the needed conversation to clear assumptions and align, the lights are shining on the same thing. Working together, even networking.

4 lights-after-network-together.png
Shine the light on the same thing.
Alignment is knowing.

Published by

Lance Willett

My name is Lance, I am a blogger, product manager, software developer, and business executive creating high-quality, engaging, and customer-centered experiences for people online. México-born.

3 thoughts on “A Conversation Shines the Light”

  1. > Alignment is knowing versus thinking we know

    I recently read a book called the four agreements and whilst it was more about your life than work, one of the agreements was “don’t make assumptions”. I would say that non-alignment is full of assumptions.

    > Don’t make assumptions: find the courage to ask questions and to express what you really want. Communicate with others as clearly as you can to avoid misunderstandings, sadness and drama. With just this one agreement, you can completely transform your life.

    Liked by 1 person

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