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Inés Velilla, Campaigns Intern at Brighton Chamber, speaks to Eddy Canfor-Dumas and Peter Osborn from The Centre for Creative Conversation. At this year’s Brighton Summit 24/7 they’ll be leading a workshop on developing seven habits to make more meaningful connections and conversations. In this blog, they talk about their pilot project that covers the same topic.  

Hi Eddy and Peter! Your workshop at this year’s Brighton Summit will dive into the seven habits for creative conversations – similar to your pilot project. So, tell us, what’s it about?

Peter Osborn headshotEddy Canfor-Dumas headshot

It’s all about bridging divides between people, strengthening human connection, and helping people understand that we all have more power, more agency, to create change than we may realise. We’re living at a time of increasing instability and polarisation, which is challenging us 24/7 in all kinds of ways and in different areas – at home, at work and in our efforts to make a positive difference to our world somehow. So, the 7 Habits programme is a way to help people collaborate better and manage conflict in the face of these challenges. 

(Peter left, Eddy right)



What inspired you to create the pilot?  

We’ve been working with a variety of different organisations since we published our book, The Talking Revolution, and we’ve been truly inspired by the way teachers, carers and other helpers in society have applied the key elements of creative conversation in their working lives. But we’ve always wanted to share this learning more widely, beyond an organisational setting, and the pilot is our first step on that journey.   

Who is the pilot for?  

The pilot is aimed at anyone who wants to transform one or more of what we call the ‘three pains’; that is,  

– Personal pain – you’re not connecting with someone who’s important to you, someone you care about; 

– Organisational pain – you’re part of a dysfunctional organisation, of any size, where the disconnection between its members means it can’t fulfil its prime purpose and everyone is hurting in some way; and  

– Societal pain – you’re deeply concerned about how our society is fracturing. 

We know it also appeals to those whose work is focused more broadly on helping to foster better human relationships. 

What will people take away from the pilot?  

We’ve got some responses on our website home page that give a pretty good idea of what effects to expect. Here are four: 

– ‘This is not just about work. This is universal. It has made me more thoughtful and reflective – and a bit more kind!’ 

– ‘The course helped us really open up with each other and become more approachable. It’s changed each one of us for the better.’ 

– ‘It really has changed my whole outlook on things. Staff morale is definitely higher. There’s been a real shift.’ 

– ‘We’re getting more done. People are being more honest. It’s been life-changing.’ 


What do you hope to get from the project?  

Lots of things. More people using creative conversation to create change in their daily lives. A solid and growing community of practice. A growing awareness that simple, practical – and learnable – skills already exist in the world that can make a real, positive difference to human relationships. New connections that will help us take the project to a new level. The germination of an acorn that will eventually grow into a mighty oak, basically. So not much to ask!  

Finally, what are you looking forward to about this year’s Brighton Summit?  

We love meeting new people, working with new people, learning from them, being challenged by them and developing together. Past Summits have brought such an interesting mix together that we can’t wait to be surprised at the unexpected new connections we’ll all make at this one. And it’s always lovely to be in Brighton, of course! 

Brighton Summit 24/7 is on 23 October at The Corn Exchange at Brighton Dome. It’s a full day jam-packed with superb speakers, wonderful workshops, brilliant breakouts, next-level networking and so much more to help us explore this year’s 24/7 theme. Book your ticket here and read more about Eddy and Peter’s workshop here.   

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