Hola. Bonjour. Kon'nichiwa.
It is amazing to see that a common greeting like “Hello” has such a diverse vocabulary across languages. There are around 7000 languages in the world, each with its own unique structure, grammar
As Lera Boroditsky, a leading cognitive scientist, explores in her book - 7,000 Universes: How the Languages We Speak Shape the Way We Think, people who speak different languages interpret the same situation differently. For example, a river in Russian is grammatically feminine. Hence a Russian speaker is more likely to use adjectives like flowing, elegant, and magnificent to describe a river. But a Spanish speaker will associate a river with words like powerful and great because rivers are considered to be masculine in Spanish. This proves that our understanding of the world around us is shaped by the structure of the language we speak.
Our worldview is shaped by the language we speak
This forces us to think about how important it is to communicate using simple, direct and open language so as to drive home a clear message. In the Lean-Agile mindset, language is an essential parameter for coaching, planning, collaboration
The language of each player becomes invaluable when it comes to identifying assumptions in user stories. Ambiguous language of the business owner or developer can result in important considerations being overlooked. Genuine communication with language transparency at every stage of the PI will ensure that objectives are met and that the collaboration between teams is enriching.
Language is imperative to building strong relationships between team members
Another aspect where language plays a critical role is Emotional Intelligence - understanding our emotions and of those around us. Because emotions are fundamental to the cultural functioning of a team and emotional competencies like the ability to adapt to change are crucial to the survival of an organization in a disruptive market, language can create an environment where developers, product managers, business owners and others come together to collaborate as a team and work towards a common vision. Through the power of language, coaches and leaders can build grass root relationships that foster a strong working culture.
The Lean-Agile transformation is a powerful experience that leads to a change in our social field. Any transformation in our social field results in the need to develop a language that helps us understand and articulate it. In his book, Theory U, Dr. C Otto Scharmer delves into the four patterns of conversation - downloading, debate, dialogue and
While our ability to think uniquely brings thought diversity to the table, can we engage in dialogue on a common platform? To discover how language is essential for a successful Lean-Agile transformation, register with Temenos+Agility for a SAFe certification course. Our