Conversation is Good Business

8-3-2013 4-22-00 AM


MIT validates the obvious: conversation is good business.

Authentic conversation is a key modality of The Social Enterprise and your Colabria Action Research Networks.

In the BofA call center:

“Individuals who talked to more coworkers were getting through calls faster, felt less stressed and had the same approval ratings as their peers.”

Face-2-face conversation is good for business? Gasp!


Remember, this disruptive innovation, conversation, requires no enterprise social media, no 2-year IT project, no so-called management.

For authentic conversation, there is no million dollar budget, no fancy PowerPoints on ‘culture’ (?), no software, no well-manicured vendors.

Great conversation means no ‘thought leadership,’ no annoying consultants, no hierarchy, no community of practice, no training, no loopy change management – just genuine chitchat.

This is a great Colabria Next Practice. It elaborates the business advantages and enormous, tangible discounted cash flow benefits originating from deliberate conversations.


“Data mining is about finding patterns in digital stuff. I’m more interested specifically in finding patterns in humans,” says Pentland, who has a Ph.D. in artificial intelligence and psychology from MIT. “I’m taking data mining out into the real world.”

“Informally talking out problems and solutions, it seemed, produced better results than following the employee handbook or obeying managers’ e-mailed instructions.

So the call center tried its own experiment. Instead of staggering employees’ coffee breaks as it had previously, it aligned their breaks to allow more chatter. The result, Bank of America told MIT a few months later: productivity gains worth about $15 million a year.”

Bottom line? Conversation is Good Business.

Main article: Mining Human Behavior At MIT


Colabria Action Research

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