In our polarized world, it is easy for conversations to get stuck. It’s important to find communication pathways forward on the big issues of our time including energy – whether at the holiday dinner table, in our organizations, at the soccer game or on the wider political stage.
Whatever your job or position, if you talk with other people, you are in the business of communication. Communicating means both understanding and being understood by others. The only question is whether you are a good communicator.
Communication is like dialing a telephone. After you key in the last digit, the phone will ring and you connect with your party. At that point, you have an opportunity:
- To influence, which means having an effect on the opinions and behaviors of others.
- To persuade, which means getting others to cooperate.
- To negotiate, which means getting the very best deal for all parties involved.
We have a common goal, a clean energy future. But in today’s overcharged, divided political climate trust is lacking. We must return to civil conversations during which we can build trust. We might disagree about a given topic or situation but, to constructively advance energy, we need facts and the ability to discuss issues openly and respectfully, over an extended period of time if necessary. It’s going to take deep collaboration and coalition building as a mechanism to drive impact. Energy Champions Don’t Win Arguments They Win Hearts.
The elevator speeches in this book, updated for 2022, originated from ordinary people who care about energy, our industry, our world and expanding the energy conversation. It’s a part of our Natural Gas Champion’s course. If you are inspired and want to become a Natural Gas Champion, learn more here.