“You need to have more conflict.”
This is Dr. Liane Davey’s advice to almost every organization with which she works. These include enormous companies like TD Bank, Amazon, and smaller companies like Shoretel. Chris Burgy, former VP of Strategy at Shoretel, says of Liane and her company 3COze,
“Liane supported us in rolling out a methodology for productive communication and conflict to our top 100 leaders in the company. Without a doubt, I fervently recommend Liane to any company seeking to improve their organization’s accountability, communication methods and for those seeking a fantastic facilitator for strategic level planning.”
3COze is named in conjunction with their mission statement. They seek to transform the way people “communicate, connect, and contribute” in their organizations. Liane is the co-founder and principal of 3COze, and brings her “more conflict” approach to CEOs and senior leadership teams around the country and across the world.
She says the number one thing that’s getting in the way of productivity is that people are avoiding conflict and being passive-aggressive. That means conflict sits unresolved causing a lack of productivity, eroding trust and engagement, and causing stress for individuals.
Liane says the things she learned in obtaining her PhD in Industrial/Organizational Psychology from Waterloo are the same ideas she puts into practice today.
“It’s very much applied social psychology. So, issues of motivation, team dynamics, conflict, culture, all the sorts of things that are the bread and butter of organizational psychology have been my whole career.”
And what a career it has been! Not only does Liane work with some of the biggest CEOs and companies around the world, she is also an author (her book The Good Fight: Use Productive Conflict to Get Your Team and Organization Back on Track is available at online book sellers everywhere), a blogger (at www.lianedavey.com) and a public speaker, bringing her message of productive conflict to corporate crowds everywhere.
She is also a volunteer member of the board of trustees at the Psychology Foundation of Canada (PFC), a charity that brands itself a “child-based (birth-18) mental health promotion organization” thanks in part to Liane’s strategic skills in directing the board and the group. And also her ability to create productive conflict, and not to shy away from uncomfortable conversations.
She first encountered the PFC at a fundraising breakfast twelve years ago, and was impressed by what they were able to do with so few resources. With just a handful of staff members and an army of volunteer facilitators, they were able to create resilience, attachment, and stress management skills in what are now hundreds of thousands of Canadian children every year.
When not writing, blogging, speaking, volunteering, or whipping a group of executives into shape, what does someone like Liane do? Well, she says it’s often important to do things at which you are terrible. With that in mind she just had a Bob Ross paint night with her kids, and the painting now rests proudly in her house. A Bob Ross paint night sounds like just the kind of soothing, mellow thing that might be as far from “conflict” as possible. And even the expert on the subject likely needs a break from conflict now and then, if only for a little while.