To understand the way children develop, Bronfenbrenner believes that it is necessary to observe their behavior in natural settings, while they are interacting with familiar adults over prolonged periods of time. His book offers an important blueprint for constructing a new and ecologically valid psychology of development.
A second group of important interpersonal skills for managers come under the heading of INNOVATING BEHAVIOURS. These are skills that develop a positive, forward thinking, and learning organisation.
- Creating an Open Environment/ensuring Multilateral Communication – This skills is about facilitating organisational communication and making sure that there are the appropriate mechanisms for people to be aware of organisational goals and where they and others fit into the overall purpose. At it’s simplest level it is about listening and responding to information from staff as well as making sure they get key information.
- Searching for alternatives – If you always do what you’ve always done you’ll always get what you’ve always got. If you want to move forward as a learning organisation and solve thorny problems then alternatives to ways of working and doing things need to be available.
- Learning from Others – In order to learn from other there needs to be an ethos that says that mentoring and coaching is an important activity to ensure the organisation shares vision and maximises skills.
- Encouraging reasonable risks and Managing Failure – not everything we try is successful and works, but a learning organisation that will grow and develop needs to initiate activities that may well have risk of failure involved. Helping staff to accept the risk of failure and not stop them taking reasonable risks in the future is a vital interpersonal skill.
- Providing Constructive Feedback – this speaks for itself, it’s not just about praise for a job well done but also the important skill of giving feedback of work not quite right in order to help the person do the job more effectively – without crushing morale or denting motivation.