Month: June 2017

Email with care

– She did not like the tone of your email, said my boss, referring to a consultant on the team.

I was shocked to hear that. I went back to my email. I re-read it. Had others read it. Back then, I did not realise it was about the way  the receiver reads it and about the environment/stage she was at that time.

This knowledge came to me couple of years latter at an emotional intelligence training. When the trainer guided me to a research by Daniel Goleman: “we tend to misinterpret positive email messages as more neutral, and neutral ones as more negative, than the sender intended. Even jokes are rated as less funny by recipients than by senders”.

This is important to pay attention to especially in remote-control project management, where you cannot pop-in the teams offices and where most of communication is by email. To prevent and/or overcome eventual misunderstandings, I aspire to practice face-to-face or Skype or video-conference contacts on a regular or just spontaneous basis.

If you are interested, here is a reference to the above mentioned research

Why involve civil society in projects?

This week I was one of speakers at an international meeting on civil society involvement in projects. There were lots of inspirational speakers from both sides of the story. 

Will retain for now an advice from Goran Forbici, Director of the Centre for information service, cooperation and development of NGOs, Slovenia:

“Imagine four housewifes in your neighbourhood. One has a chocolate, the second – 2 eggs,  the third  – some butter and sugar, the forth – some flour. With the exception of chocolate, there is little use of ingredients by themselves. But together they can make a chocolate cake.”

I would replace “housewifes” with neighbours, any neighbors. 

If you are not a chocolate-lover, replace it with fruit or another preferred  ingredient. The process and the end-result is what matters most. 

So, next time i am asked why involve the civil society in project design and implementation, i’ll make sure i have all the ingredients in my bag. I might look like a housewife just back from the market, but the result matters in this case, not the impression i might make.  

The “how” in the equation on the involvement of civil society   in projects is a topic for another post. TBContinued.