“Command and Control” Won’t Work Anymore

I  just finished watching Ken Burns’ series on World War II. It was illuminating and exhausting at the same time. It is available as a DVD set from our local Sacramento Library. What was significant, for me, was the need and justification of “command and control” thinking as we fought incredibly complex wars on both sides of the world. And what also was compelling was the massive waste and loss of lives and material....and how so much was obvious after-the-fact that was not obvious in the moment. … [Read more...]

The Birth of Conversation Mapping

Conversation Mapping

The development of many of the Systemic leadership techniques we work with, with businesses, governments and not-for-profit organisations started their life through efforts to support small rural communities perplexed by the rapid changes disrupting traditional practices. The Conversation Map now used in boardrooms around the world was first conceived in a squatter settlement outside Port Moresby in Papua New Guinea. Leaders of this settlement (known as the Horse Camp) were trying to get a U.N. development agency to install clean reticulated water. At the time a U.N. policy factor and a … [Read more...]

What is a Healthy Relationship to Money?

imagesofmoney (taxbrackets.org)

To live in the world today requires us to form a conscious connection to money.  Do we have money, or does money have us?  What role does money (or the lack of it) play in our imagination of our dignity in the society, or our security in the macro-economy? What is our family’s history and “story” about its relationship to money?  Does that story continue to unconsciously influence us?  What percentage of our waking consciousness is devoted to money or the lack of it….or how we use it to meet our needs and wants?  What pressures exist on our feeling life tied to money? … [Read more...]

Systemic Thinking an Essential Tool for Leading in a Complex World

Only a few years ago the term systemic was one that rarely occurred in news reports and only occasionally in technical and academic articles. Today it rolls off the tongue of President Obama and other world leaders at regular intervals as they reflect on world issues and the approach required to address them. The change has been brought about by the realization that thinking and working within narrow perceptions of the world has failed. We cannot make significant improvement in complex issues from a single worldview. Agencies working to address these complex problems need to meld multiple … [Read more...]