Building Better Teams

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“Hire the best.”

For managers, that bit of business wisdom goes without saying. When you recruit new employees, recruit the most capable. When you build a team, build one with the most proficient members. The idea is so widely acknowledged and so obviously right that it barely merits acknowledgment.

It also often happens to be wrong.

Harnessing a diversity of skills rather than a roster of pure talent is often a better team-building strategy, according to a new paper co-authored by Jonathan Bendor, the Walter and Elise Haas Professor of Political Economics and Organizations at Stanford Graduate School of Business.

“The conventional wisdom is implicitly set in a world of certainty. Further, it’s a world where there is agreement on goals,” Bendor says. “When you move from a world of certainty to one of uncertainty and/or from one of happy, calm agreement on goals to one in which there are sharp disagreements under the surface—then this wisdom falls apart.”

Challenging the Assumptions

To test conventional wisdom, Bendor, and his longtime collaborator Scott Page from the University of Michigan built a model to consider various cases where the best approach might be a less obvious choice. The model built by Bendor and Page rests on a few fundamental assumptions.

First, people have different tools at their disposal. Engineers building a smartphone, for instance, may have a variety of different battery technologies to choose from. One of these batteries might have the highest probability of success, but other types may still be worth exploring. (Tools can be technology such as this or a technique such as one of the four DNA sequencing techniques used by biochemists.)

Second, different people have different abilities with various tools. One engineer may be an expert on lithium-ion batteries, another on aluminum-ion batteries. A third may be an expert in nickel-hydrogen batteries.

Third, group and individual goals aren’t always aligned. “As any coach knows, sometimes there are too few basketballs for the egos on the team,” Bendor says. Individuals at a company may want their team to succeed, but they also have their own careers, their own ambitions to consider. “Consequently, what they would like best of all is for the team to succeed and to have it succeed because they solved the problem.”

When the Best People isn’t the Best Policy

With this foundation, the model quickly illuminates scenarios that are both easy to imagine and that favor a managerial strategy other than simply hiring the best when teams work on hard problems.

Consider, Bendor says, a team of two people, Mary and Peter. Each is expert in a different tool, and their employer faces a challenge in which the tool that Mary knows best has a pretty good probability of finding a solution whereas the tool Peter knows best has a lower probability. On top of this, Mary completely dominates Peter in ability; any tool that Peter has in his repertoire Mary can actually apply better.

“Conventional wisdom suggests that the manager would never put Peter on a team with Mary,” Bendor says. Just put together a bunch of Marys. But this ignores the fact that because one tool has a higher probability of success, every Mary on the team might opt to use it, and so the manager gets a team of people all trying to solve a problem in the same way. When everybody’s swinging hammers and no one’s sawing lumber, the house won’t get built.

Instead, recruit Peter to the team; now the manager has somebody who, out of his own self-interest, will try using the tool with a lower probability of success because that is the tool he specializes in. “The manager then gets tool diversity out of these two agents because she didn’t hire the best,” says Bendor.

Of course, even with the right mix of tools and talents on a team, good managers must be aware that what they want and what their employees want won’t always align. Given this, managers need to think carefully about the interpersonal dynamics within each team and then offer rewards that reinforce cooperation.

“You can do exercises that enhance the weight people place on the team objective, but at the end of the day effective team management takes into account powerful personal goals, such as career interests, which may mean that the choices people on the team want to make won’t be the choices you want them to make,” he says. “What you want to do at a high level of generality is to reward people as much as possible for group success and then, as much as possible, suppress payoffs for the individual.”

Portions of this article originally appeared on the Fast Company website.

The Sundance Company                                                                
Established in 1976, The Sundance Company has the experience to help you with your commercial real estate needs throughout the Boise Valley. If your requirements include property management, leasing, real estate development, project planning, construction or space planning then look to us. The Sundance Company has more than 1.5 million square feet of office and industrial space available in prime locations in the Boise metropolitan area. More information is available at www.sundanceco.com or 208.322.7300.

 

Look Who’s Talking To Their Phone

 

The Sundance Company                                                                
Established in 1976, The Sundance Company has the experience to help you with your commercial real estate needs throughout the Boise Valley. If your requirements include property management, leasing, real estate development, project planning, construction or space planning then look to us. The Sundance Company has more than 1.5 million square feet of office and industrial space available in prime locations in the Boise metropolitan area. More information is available at www.sundanceco.com or 208.322.7300.

Top Five Tips To Elevate Employee Engagement

With such a competitive environment for talent, organizations are seeking strategies to keep current employees engaged and energized now more than ever. They are also looking to attract the best and brightest to their doors. Higher engagement among employees has amazing, positive ripple effects that can impact the bottom line and go beyond the organization’s four walls. When employees are excited about where they work; they are more likely to promote the workplace to others who could be that competitive advantage an organization is seeking. Many companies are looking at how physical changes to their workplace can support their business goals and improve the employee experience.

Measuring engagement within the workplace happens in many ways. Here are five key steps and tools, within the lens of change management, to help organizations maintain and/or elevate engagement when undertaking a workplace improvement project or relocation:

1) Communication Strategy

Determining your audience(s) and developing the right message for each is a key component to ensuring smooth change management. Whether the audience is leadership, employees or the core project team; each deserves an appropriately crafted message that is relevant to them. The communication plan should overlay with the design schedule, identifying the right times to tap into each audience for information and when to articulate the message back out to each group. Showing renderings paired with the ‘why behind the design’ to employees so they can visualize the layout of their workspaces and further understand how it aligns with the business goals, provides them an opportunity to provide feedback and further engage in the process. However, showing a rendering too early and without messaging, can have a negative effect. For example: showing a team of employees, who all have separate private offices, a rendering of an open workspace before they have been given the message of the “why” behind the new design can cause chaos and confusion. A clear and well thought out change management communication strategy can set the tone for a smooth and easy transition.

2) Want Engaged Employees? Give them a Voice.

Workplace changes and projects are often determined by the leadership of an organization and do not always involve employee input. Employee input, however, can be extremely valuable and serve as a guide in the preferences of a future workforce (particularly if you are able to collect generational data in correlation to preferences). For example, we leverage a very simple survey tool that provides employees a voice without setting an expectation for change. How do we do that? We ask very simply, current state questions aligned with the built environment that employees rank on a satisfaction scale. Both client and designer gain better insights into project priorities and message alignment back to employees, demonstrating that “we have listened” and “within the design, here are those ways we listened.” This is just one tool that engages employees in the process.  Another way could be through a company intranet site where employees can ask questions or gain project updates along the way. The key to these sites is having a way of taking in information but also articulating information back out so that employees are responded to. Other ways to engage employees is by allowing them to vote on certain furniture upgrades if you are replacing or modifying workstations or give them an opportunity to name a new conference or huddle rooms.

3) Articulating the Why

Changes in the design of a workspace should support the organization’s future business objectives and embrace the culture of that organization. People are creatures of habit so employees can often get very focused on their own personal needs and rooted in how they work today, while the business objectives of the future may point to new workflows or environments to support innovation into the future. Having a “why” helps employees to mentally prepare for the greater change. This is where transparency comes into play. It is important for organizations to align future objectives, the culture of their organization with the place and technology solutions that are going to best support the future of their business. Some of the ways to do this is through newsletters, town hall discussions, interactive company intranet pages dedicated to the project as well as virtual reality that goes along with a messaging guide. These tactics introduce employees to the environments they may expect to see in the new space and what type of work can be done in that space. Particularly, on move-in day, it can be very beneficial to welcome employees to their new workstation with a welcome packet further explaining the ‘why and how’ of their new work environment. If supporting wellness within the workplace was identified as a key to supporting the business objectives, and workstations now have sit to stand desks, tell your employees this and help them understand how to best leverage this new feature. This helps place the focus on the future direction of the company; thereby evolving a possible “me” focus into a “we” mentality.

4) Behavior Alignment to Support Culture

To support the company culture at an organization, there must be an understanding of current behaviors and alignment on ideal future behaviors, particularly in an environment with new work settings and options. Observing current behaviors within a work environment can be a very informative tool that can help transition behaviors of the current work environment to a new one. One of our recent clients wanted to promote a more collaborative and vibrant culture. During observations and tours of the work environment, many employees were found eating at desks and we logged several small refrigerators and coffee pots in a whole host of locations scattered throughout their facility; this did not promote opportunities for cross-department collaboration. Through the new design, a centralized break area and work café for employees were introduced to further promote chance collisions and collaborations that can lead to relationship building and idea generation throughout the work environment. The key, however, is removing the multiple coffee pots and small refrigerators throughout the existing work environment and promoting a new behavior of taking breaks away from the workstation. The behavior shift started with leadership, who demonstrated their commitment to utilizing these spaces and resulted in a trickle effect on the employees to use these spaces more. In the common break area, a local higher-end coffee was provided, further incentivizing employees to use the break areas. These change management tools, leading behavior change and considering an incentive to further support a cultural shift can be simple, yet impactful. As a result, the employees at this location, are loving these spaces and use them daily beyond just a break location, they are also having quick collaborations and informal meetings in their new work café and break area.

5) Make it Fun

Involving staff members in any change management activity and providing fun initiatives along the way fosters an environment of inclusion and helps ease the transition. Celebrations of major milestones in project design and construction can also improve the experience. Some examples of fun ways to involve staff members include:

  • Tours and sneak peeks to let staff members see progress
  • Decluttering competitions
  • The naming of rooms competition
  • Artist display where staff votes on final selections
  • Sign the stud opportunity during construction
  • Wellness challenge to get staff excited about the new space
  • Firm-wide tournament (i.e. shuffleboard) to foster adoption of the space

Bottom Line

Transparency and communication with employees are key when considering changes in the workplace; providing avenues for employees to provide their voice and obtain updates while the project is being developed and underway is essential.  Change management requires a thoughtful approach and should support continuous feedback.

If your employee’s level of engagement is your benchmark, continue to track this and react. For your workplace project, consider looking to areas within those engagement scores where the built environment or technology can better support the way people work, interact or function within a space. This will give you guidance on where to prioritize and message with employees the things you may be doing to better support that area of engagement.

Portions of this article originally appeared on the Work Design website.

 

The Sundance Company                                                                
Established in 1976, The Sundance Company has the experience to help you with your commercial real estate needs throughout the Boise Valley. If your requirements include property management, leasing, real estate development, project planning, construction or space planning then look to us. The Sundance Company has more than 1.5 million square feet of office and industrial space available in prime locations in the Boise metropolitan area. More information is available at www.sundanceco.com or 208.322.7300.

 

Is Your Business Prepared For A Cyber Attack?

 

The Sundance Company                                                                
Established in 1976, The Sundance Company has the experience to help you with your commercial real estate needs throughout the Boise Valley. If your requirements include property management, leasing, real estate development, project planning, construction or space planning then look to us. The Sundance Company has more than 1.5 million square feet of office and industrial space available in prime locations in the Boise metropolitan area. More information is available at www.sundanceco.com or 208.322.7300.

How Ideal Workspaces Can Transform Your Office Culture

The physical space we work in every day has a significant impact on our physical and mental wellbeing. Companies that have invested in redesigning their offices to maximize health benefits have seen a huge impact on their employees, from improvements in individuals’ moods and productivity to increased collaboration and a sense of belonging.

With these benefits, investing in physical space is gaining traction globally. While some office spaces may inherently fair better than others – for example, a space with many windows – one can use healthy design metrics to make the best out of any given layout.

To understand in more detail how architects design to improve employee wellness, let’s look at what makes or breaks a workspace and what elements create an ideal space for employee creativity and energy. We can then examine how creative solutions can transform a workplace and revolutionize office culture.

What it takes to feel well at work

What makes a ‘healthy workplace’? For starters, there are some fundamental tangible elements:

  • the physical properties of materials used from construction through furniture selection to ensure clean air and resilience
  • the quantity and quality of light
  • the control of reverberation, and the integration of speech privacy detailing

Beyond materiality, light, and sound, there are also many intangible architectural moves that are critical to human physical and mental wellbeing – including but not limited to, versatility, spatial choreography, effective detailing and design ingenuity.

Spatial choreography can most easily be understood in terms of the experiential journey, but there is much more than sequence involved for a truly healthy workplace. Designing a considered sequence begins with creating an office entry that allows pause from the outside world. This means a welcoming and enveloping space, ideally incorporating reflective, non-glare lighting, natural materials and offering a clear next step directly into a place of active welcome design, where one can be met by a concierge or colleagues.

From there, the sequence transitions to a social, energizing area, such as a cafe, or another communal space. The idea is for this phase in the spatial journey to stimulate the employee, so natural fragrances such as coffee and fresh fruit, and areas for casual interaction play a key role.

This area of the office ideally leads into a wide variety of microenvironments, including areas to settle for a short face-to-face catch-up, to remove coats and belongings, to read or focus on deep work, to collaborate and hold meetings.

Creating versatility in an open space

Microenvironments can easily be achieved using separate rooms, but permanently walling off these rooms would lock an office plan into one fixed design. Many designs aim to create versatility within large rooms by employing furniture, biophilia, or walls on wheels to create spatial definition. With such versatile dividers, environments can be arranged to suit and accommodate employees’ changing needs throughout the day and can change usage from heads-down work areas to spaces for wellness and team-building activities.

For example, a large space typically used for meetings or presentations can be transformed with ease to allow for afternoon yoga, tai chi, morning meditation or lunch-time art sessions. Similarly, a café can be altered to accommodate group cooking, barista learning or a professional lunch and learn seminar.

Bringing the outdoors in with plants and natural light

The biophilia hypothesis indicates that humans seek out connections with nature and other living beings and that these connections improve our wellbeing. Not surprisingly, numerous surveys indicate that natural daylight is the most important aspect of workplace design and that employees with plants around their offices experienced a 30-60 percent reduction in stress levels.

Light has a direct impact on our mental wellbeing, so much so that doctors recommend a minimum of four hours of sunlight per day (these requirements are also captured in the WELL standard). This is in part because light releases hormones like serotonin, which helps to balance our mood. A lack of serotonin is widely understood as the cause of seasonal depression.

As an architect, maximizing access to natural light and working with light to enhance the spatial experience is critical. One way to maximize occupant access to daylight is to use windowed areas as communal spaces where employees can come and spend time throughout the day. If enclosed offices must be assembled along the perimeter of a floorplan, transparent and translucent glass walls can be used to ensure daylight filters through to reach the rest of the space.

In addition to natural daylight, artificial lighting can be integrated to define space, and some modern offices do employ lighting systems that change color temperature throughout the day to reflect the movement of the sun. This helps align employees’ natural circadian rhythms, which regulate sleep-wake cycles and can minimize fatigue during the day while improving the quality of sleep. The conscious use of light can further reduce stress through non-glare installations, and when combined with biophilia, reflected light can subtly reduce the stress through our parasympathetic nervous system.

Biophilia – introduced through the integration of natural materials, patterns, and plants, brings a design element critical to mental wellbeing in the workplace. If space for potted plants is limited, an option is a creation of “living walls” or “vertical gardens,” which feature an array of plants planted vertically against a wall or within another structure. Vertical green walls can be built on wheels so they may be moved around the office.

Fostering a Sense of Community at Work through Campus Design

A sense of belonging in the workplace and friendships with colleagues both contribute to employees’ wellbeing. It’s therefore important to design spaces where employees can not only collaborate, but make friendly conversation with coworkers without distracting others. Doing so helps satisfy the human need for social interactions, which can, in turn, create a great sense of wellbeing and inspire creativity.

Large companies with enough real estate can apply these principles through the creation of a multi-floor or multi-building campus – as we have seen with large technology companies in Silicon Valley. When it is safe to do so, these campuses can even be opened to the wider neighborhood or city residents, allowing employees’ loved ones to visit for lunch or stop by during work hours as needed.

In one campus-style office currently under construction, an internal courtyard garden was incorporated that is open to both the global workplace campus employees, and to all members of the public. In this example, the campus’ entire ground floor is designed with active facades to add to the dynamism and transparency at the street level, and programmed with restaurants and places that are open to campus community employees and the wider community as well.

Keeping people at the heart of the design process

Employees perform their best when they are part of a safe, growing community that values their whole being, and where individuality and creativity are nurtured.

In sum, the goal is to create every workplace with people at the heart of the design process To design spaces that support people’s physical, mental and social wellbeing, inspire creativity – and in turn directly increase business performance and profitability. If that isn’t worth investing in – what is?

 

Portions of this article originally appeared on the Work Design website.

 

The Sundance Company                                                                
Established in 1976, The Sundance Company has the experience to help you with your commercial real estate needs throughout the Boise Valley. If your requirements include property management, leasing, real estate development, project planning, construction or space planning then look to us. The Sundance Company has more than 1.5 million square feet of office and industrial space available in prime locations in the Boise metropolitan area. More information is available at www.sundanceco.com or 208.322.7300.

 

21 Ways to Unlock Creative Genius

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The Sundance Company                                                                
Established in 1976, The Sundance Company has the experience to help you with your commercial real estate needs throughout the Boise Valley. If your requirements include property management, leasing, real estate development, project planning, construction or space planning then look to us. The Sundance Company has more than 1.5 million square feet of office and industrial space available in prime locations in the Boise metropolitan area. More information is available at www.sundanceco.com or 208.322.7300.

How to Improve Your Time Management Skills

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How might people best prepare themselves to become better time managers? Doing so first requires figuring out where to focus. Taking a deeper dive into your current skill levels is the only genuine way to answer this question. There are three steps you can take to prime your improvement efforts.

Build accurate self-awareness of your time management skills. This can be accomplished by using objective assessments like a microsimulation, seeking feedback from others like one’s peers or boss, or establishing a baseline of behaviors against which gauge improvements.

Recognize that preferences matter, but not how you think. Self-awareness of one’s preferences or personality related to time management, such as multitasking or being proactive, can deepen an understanding of where you might struggle as your change efforts go against existing habits. But remember that skills, not personality, are the most malleable personal attributes and provide the greatest ROI on self-improvement efforts.

Identify and prioritize the skill you need to improve. Although this sounds obvious, the key point here is to avoid self-improvement that is an “inch deep, but a mile wide,” where efforts are spread too thin across too many needs. It is best to prioritize your skill development, focusing on the most pressing skill need first and then moving on to the next.

There are a number of evidence-based tactics for enhancing time management skills. Below are some examples. Again, it is critical to understand that tactics are for developing your underlying skills, which will ultimately improve your time management. Simply implementing these tactics is not the end-goal.

  • Developing awareness skills. Effectiveness is different than efficiency, with effectiveness being about doing things well and efficiency being about doing things fast. Both are critical. Pursuing efficiency for its own sake is counter-productive.
  • Find your peak performance time. Break your typical day into three to four time slots and, over the course of a week, rank-order these slots from your most to least productive (most productive is peak performance).
  • Treat your time like it’s money. Create a time budget that details how you spend your hours during a typical week. Categorize time into fixed time (“must do’s”) and discretionary time (“want to do’s”).
  • Try timing-up. Record how long you’ve spent on tasks with very clear deadlines, rather than how much time you have left.
  • Evaluate how realistically you assess time. After finishing a project, evaluate how long you thought it would take and how long it actually took.
  • Take a “future time perspective.” Think about how the tasks you are doing right now will help or hurt you in the future (e.g., how do today’s project tasks impact next week’s tasks?).
  • Avoid “sunk cost fallacy.” When you think you might be spending too much time on an activity, step back and evaluate its importance (e.g., how valuable is the outcome, who will be affected if it’s finished or not finished, etc.)
  • Developing arrangement skills. Unfamiliar but important tasks often have steeper learning curves and more unpredictable time requirements. Developing arrangement skills is not about organizing your work to better control your life – it’s about taking control of your life, then structuring your work around it.
  • Prioritize activities and obligations. It’s not enough to simply list out your tasks, to-do lists, and meetings.
  • Avoid the “mere urgency effect.” Urgency and importance are related but distinct concepts; urgent tasks require immediate action, whereas as important tasks have more significant and long-term consequences. Tasks that are both urgent and important should be done first.
  • Use a calendar app. Record due dates for tasks and appointments — and do this immediately when they are planned or requested. Label or color-code entries (e.g., work, school, life, etc.).
  • Schedule protected time. Make calendar appointments with yourself to ensure uninterrupted time to dedicate to your most important projects.
  • Reduce underestimation errors. When forming plans, ask a neutral party for feedback about your forecasted time requirements.
  • Try half-sized goals. When struggling to attain a goal that seems to be too challenging, set a less difficult version of the goal.
  • Developing adaptation skills. These skills are tested and developed in situations that naturally involve high pressure and sometimes even crisis – the challenge is to handle such situations without getting upset, anxious, or distracted.
  • Try “habit stacking.” Tie your time management behaviors to habits you already exhibit (e.g., track daily progress every evening when you sit down for dinner).
  • Use short bursts of effort. When tasks seem overwhelming, put forth maximum effort for 15- to 30-minute intervals to help avoid procrastination.
  • Experiment with time-tracker or checklist apps. Remember benefit must exceed cost when using these tools. Gains should outweigh the time spent using the app.
  • Don’t be a “reminder miser.” Reminders should have detailed explanations or descriptions, not one or two words that fail to describe the task’s importance, expected quality, and so forth.
  • Create contingency plans. Think about best case/worst case scenarios when you outline possible outcomes of your plans.
  • Seek to reduce time wasters. Create do-not-disturb time slots and block social media sites during critical work time.

Why does improving time management remain such a persistent, perennial goal for so many of us? The irony is that we need to become better time managers of our own efforts to improve time management — to prioritize our developmental efforts. This path begins with turning away from the alluring quick fixes and instead toward assessing and building our underlying time management skills before another new year’s resolution reaches its dissolution.

Portions of this article originally appeared on the HBR website.

 

The Sundance Company                                                                
Established in 1976, The Sundance Company has the experience to help you with your commercial real estate needs throughout the Boise Valley. If your requirements include property management, leasing, real estate development, project planning, construction or space planning then look to us. The Sundance Company has more than 1.5 million square feet of office and industrial space available in prime locations in the Boise metropolitan area. More information is available at www.sundanceco.com or 208.322.7300.

 

Creating Effective Corporate Culture

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The Sundance Company                                                                
Established in 1976, The Sundance Company has the experience to help you with your commercial real estate needs throughout the Boise Valley. If your requirements include property management, leasing, real estate development, project planning, construction or space planning then look to us. The Sundance Company has more than 1.5 million square feet of office and industrial space available in prime locations in the Boise metropolitan area. More information is available at www.sundanceco.com or 208.322.7300.

How To Ask A Great Question

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Krista Tippett has interviewed hundreds of personalities on the air in her 20 years as a broadcast journalist. On her popular podcast On Being, the 59-year-old US National Humanities Medal recipient has an acuity for orchestrating deeply satisfying conversations with a range of subjects—politicians, scientists, artists, theologians, and taxi drivers (“mystics in disguise,” she calls them). Part of Tippett’s appeal lies in how she manages to project a felt kinship between her interviewees, who are often several time zones away from her recording studio in Minneapolis, Minnesota.

The secret to rich encounters, Tippett says, is knowing how to frame a good, generous question. It’s a skill that’s been diminished amid the combative tenor in American politics and social media, she observes. “A lot of things that presents itself as a question are actually tools or weapons to incite, or corner, to catch or at least entertain,” she said during a talk at Google’s headquarters last year. “I want to point out how powerful a form of words a question is. Questions elicit answers in their likeness; answers rise and fall to the questions they meet.”

What makes a good question? Tippett, who met with Quartz in New York this week, explains that it’s less about fulfilling the interviewer’s agenda and more about putting the subject at ease.

“I’ll start with a list of all the things that I’m interested in, but I realize that many of those questions fall away,” says Tippett, who exudes the precise warmth and liveliness in person that one might imagine listening to her radio programs. “What I get interested in are questions that will be interesting to them [the interviewee].”

But framing a pleasing question isn’t about flattering the subject’s ego or pandering to their politics, Tippett notes. It’s about deep preparation—getting to know a subject’s mindset by reading and reflecting on their writing, lectures, and interviews they’ve given.

This studious preparation is meant to set the stage for the subject to willingly shed their usual script. “If you ask a question that’s interesting to them, they’ll often start thinking out loud in real-time. They’re excited and forget they’re being interviewed,” Tippett says. “Maybe they’ll even say something that they haven’t said before—and you have this moment of surprise and discovery.” It’s a tip that applies to any type of dialogue—conceivably even a job interview, in which a prospective employer, playing the role of the interviewer, might want to learn about a candidate’s sensibility beyond what’s listed on their résumé.

In On Being, Tippett’s Peabody-award winning program about human spirituality, Tippett often begins an interviewing by inquiring about her subject’s childhood and spiritual formation. In a 2018 interview with New Jersey senator and former presidential candidate Cory Booker, Tippett says, “I am curious about how you would begin to talk about the religious or spiritual background of your childhood, however, you think of that.”

Booker rewards Tippett by telling anecdotes about his upbringing in northern New Jersey and speaks about politics as “manifesting love” and his own frailty—talking points that would perhaps normally be stricken from his political rhetoric.

“We’re taught that listening is being quiet and waiting for your turn to talk,” says Tippett. “I think questions are often very transactional, but the real adventure occurs if you muster curiosity.”

Tippett’s strategy is a counterpoint to the formulaic line of questioning that shapes so many conversations today—including professional interviews. Tell me about your greatest achievement and failure. Where do you want to be in five years?

These generic questions require no preparation for the interviewee, but, as Tippett predicts, they also often yield generic answers. Imagine how the quality of job interviews might improve if we reframed them as authentic conversations between humans.

Portions of this article originally appeared on the Quartz at Work website.

The Sundance Company                                                                
Established in 1976, The Sundance Company has the experience to help you with your commercial real estate needs throughout the Boise Valley. If your requirements include property management, leasing, real estate development, project planning, construction or space planning then look to us. The Sundance Company has more than 1.5 million square feet of office and industrial space available in prime locations in the Boise metropolitan area. More information is available at www.sundanceco.com or 208.322.7300.

 

50 Annoying Phrases You Hear At Work

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The Sundance Company                                                                
Established in 1976, The Sundance Company has the experience to help you with your commercial real estate needs throughout the Boise Valley. If your requirements include property management, leasing, real estate development, project planning, construction or space planning then look to us. The Sundance Company has more than 1.5 million square feet of office and industrial space available in prime locations in the Boise metropolitan area. More information is available at www.sundanceco.com or 208.322.7300.