What Robots Teach us about Human Interaction

By 25 Jun ’12Blog

What separates people who get stuff done from people who don’t? Remember these two words: Active and Passive. Here’s what I mean.

Here’s the scenario: you are out and about and meet a potential customer. What’s your next move? Well, you could send a follow-up email. Or, you could make a follow-up phone call. The first is passive, the second is active. The first waits, the second doesn’t. While the first puts the responsibility in the potential customer’s lap, the second takes responsibility.

I got to thinking about this recently when I was watching the short film included below. It’s a film about how robots are being used to teach & interact with humans. I was watching it and two parts struck me. First off, just being in the room with someone (whether it’s physical or by voice), changes the way people react. Second, predictable behavior (ie. emails, memos, text messages) just becomes white noise, unless something happens to surprise us and “switch things up.”

So whether you are a c-suite executive or you own a small business, ask yourself: First, is my behavior active or passive? What could I do to become more active? Second, Is my behavior too predictable? What could I do to be more engaging with others? Third, how might things change if I’d “be in the room” more often? Whether it’s your physical presence or a phone call–your presence makes a difference.

Watch this 3 minute film and see if you can learn anything about your own behavior from Robots.