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The Power of Conversation— and Listening

By Pat Wilson

Firing off an angry missive in the heat of rage is astonishingly easy and amazingly impersonal, particularly when sent via email, text, or some other electronic form.   We all know that people often say in writing things they would shrink from saying in person.  After all, the writer isn’t looking the target of his anger in the eye but venting at an inanimate screen.   

During the Women Leaders Panel at our recent 2020 Vision Leadership Conference, Dean Melissa Essary admits that when she received a long, angry screed from a colleague, she was tempted to respond in kind.  She opted not to give in to the temptation, however.  Watch the video or review the transcript of that panel discussion to see how Dean Essary chose to handle the situation.  Suffice it to say, her approach involved face-to-face conversation and engaged listening, with plans for more conversation. 

Dean Essary and the other accomplished women on the panel shared what they learned on the path to becoming leaders.  We hope you’ll check out this session, as well as others from the Vision 2020 Leadership Conference.