How to Build Your Career Through Better Conversations

As miners there’s a lot of banter between us, it’s just a fact of the environment we’re in. But what if we could be having better conversations? This is what having a podcast has opened up for me. I’ve gained more of an insight into our industry, just by having conversations, than I ever would have otherwise.

On a recent episode of Full Production, I was joined by Jerrod Downey, the director of Crownsmen Partners. Jarrod knows all about mining and good conversations, as he himself is a resident host of the incredibly well-produced podcast, The Crownsmen. There’s an art to good conversation, so here are a few pointers that we covered illustrating how you can open up a more informative dialogue, regardless of whether you have a podcast or not.

Step Back and Listen

Having a platform like a podcast encourages a prolific conversationalist – like me – to have regular, in-depth conversations. Occasionally, some topics come up that don’t necessarily align with my own personal views. With my experience, I know it’s how you handle those situations that can mean the difference between an awkward conflict and an in-depth, informative conversation.

Jerrod explains that when he was formulating his show he took influences from hosts like Larry King. Neither Jerrod nor Larry necessarily agrees with everything their guest says, but they let them say their piece and follow up with more questions to broaden the perspective.

We can all butt heads occasionally, just be careful that your own strong opinions don’t cloud the conversation. One thing you should consider is “are you educated enough or in control of your emotions enough to have a steady conversation?” If not, avoid the topic.  

So, hear the other person out, ask questions and encourage dialogue. You may just learn something new and valuable.

Staying Unfiltered

Authenticity is part of our culture nowadays. People don’t want heavily edited content, and attention spans – regardless of what people may think – certainly aren’t short. Shows like Full Production and The Crownsmen focus on having lengthier, in-depth conversations that tackle topics that occasionally go against the grain, and for that, they are well received. In a world where things are so highly charged with distorted politics and biased opinions, people are hungry for facts and genuineness. “A lot of people also want a lot of in-depth information, and they don’t want it filtered out all the time,” says Jerrod. If a conversation ignites something in you, and you have the knowledge and capability to engage, then go for it.

Conversations Increase Your Knowledge

Admittedly, since I started podcasting, the amount I have learned about our industry is insane. When you care about the topic you’re discussing, the better the conversations are going to be. In a podcasting environment, it takes away any form of agenda bias, so the things that you end up discussing are much more authentic and informative as you want to dive in deeper.

The subject of mining is so vast and affects so many people, that the need for good, informative conversations is high – even at the coal face. Remember, mining is a heavy industry and isn’t without its controversies that should be discussed.

Try casting a wider net, and be open to bigger conversations, allowing for a back and forth, even if it’s uncomfortable. You could extend your knowledge and become a better asset within the industry.

To hear the full conversation click here.