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Robust Dialogue Fosters Creativity and Innovation

Omaha culture puts a huge emphasis on surface politeness. (When I first arrived here, I was sometimes thought to be from New York, a thought that I took as a complement, although that was not how it was intended.)

Bossidy and Charan emphasize that harmony is an over-rated virtue--that what they call "robust dialogue" is important for getting things done.

(p. 102) You cannot have an execution culture without robust dialogue---one that brings reality to the surface through openness, candor, and informality. Robust dialogue makes an organization effective in gathering information, understanding the information, and reshaping it to produce decisions. It fosters creativity---most innovations and inventions are incubated through robust dialogue. Ultimately, it creates more competitive advantage and shareholder value.

. . .

(p. 103) . . ., harmony---sought by many leaders who wish to offend no one---can be the enemy of truth.


Bossidy, Larry, Ram Charan, and Charles Burck. Execution: The Discipline of Getting Things Done. New York: Crown Business, 2002.

(Note: ellipses added.)

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