MindShift

TRANSFORMATION – INSIGHT – LEADERSHIP


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We-Space revisited.

Tune in to the We-Space Summit:  http://www.thewespacesummit.com with 150 friends and colleagues from all over the world. 

Our own contribution:

Wednesday, October 11: The New Workplace: Panel Discussion with Johann Entz- von Zerssen, Mushin Schilling and myself:

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In this conversation, Anne Caspari and Johann Entz-Von Zerssen begin by clarifying their approach with Mushin Shilling, which redefines theWe-Space and presencing in the context of their work with individuals, teams and OD. They begin by framing the emotional dimension of our experience, where they work with helping clients and teams develop the capacity to face the difficult places in their actual experience or “what they can´t be with”, in order to establish a more grounded and realist position collectively. In pointing out some of the hazards of conventional presencing approaches, they problematize some of the common presencing assumptions such as “leading from the future as it emerges” and point out the challenges of working with the chaotic messiness of here and now. By bringing a curiosity for the process and culture organizations are in the middle of, they work with holding the We-Space via Dave Snowden’s work with Sensemaker® by engaging people as a ‘human sensor network’ to enable them to contribute to getting a more accurate picture of what is really happening in their organization or community. This helps develop a participatory engagement in the We-Space through a more experiential and practical approach that empowers people to work from where they are. The conversation ends with clarifying key distinctions between emergence and structures in formal We-Space practice as well as alignment, coherence and other terms of complex adaptive systems.

This Thursday, October 12: Panel Discussion with Tom MurrayBonnitta RoyMushin SchillingAndrew Venezia and myself: “The Participatory Panel” – The We-Space Summit, Day 4 https://www.thewespacesummit.com/workplace-3/

Screen Shot 2017-09-21 at 11.44.39 AM_previewThis panel conversation takes a critical turn in problematizing a few of the dynamics of collective process in groups and ventures perspectives on how this implicates and limits the We-Space. When groups engage in collective practice, the question this panel returns to is what are we actually participating with? They point out, for some groups, there is a tendency to be caught in projection, in thought or perhaps our own social anxiety or social agenda among a wide diversity of possible experiences. As this panel explores, facilitators in such contexts often default to professional strategies to control the direction of the process toward desired outcomes based on their particular preconceived ideals of group process. Such groups then become bound to an idea or ideal of “we-ness” and then go out of their way to make this particular flavor of we-ness happen. In this panel, the participants take a step back and call into question any kind of position that is projected onto the field of collective practice.  Connected to this inquiry is problematizing any pre-conceived sense or ideal of “We-ness” that is a reflection of this more conventional stage approach of engaging the shared field. Turning instead to the more radical or post-conventional possibilities of collective practice that lie beyond the mainstream layers of social habit and convention, the panel posits the possibility of a more open and direct participation that proceeds instead from sensory clarity as the basis for authentic participation.  What creative potentials then emerge in such groups where participants are no longer constrained, via positive or negative associations and projections of the We? Panel members share their stories and current practices as examples of what they believe lies beyond this more commonplace variety of conventional We-Space practice.

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Company Values

Image result for cartoon bad culture

Companies have become aware of the fact that core values – integrity, trust, fairness – can function as attractors that drive beneficial behaviours in the workplace. What they are not getting is that core values just can´t be prescribed, top down or in any other direction.

While many companies large and small have come to the laudable conclusion to focus their organizational development efforts on values rather than behaviours, most go about this strategy in a wrong way.  When values are defined upfront without letting them emerge through a process and paying attention to which values are currently operative, people tend to game the system and display what HR and HQ want to hear. Dave Snowden puts it this way: “As soon as you write your values down, you´ve lost them”.

Even if you work with more sophisticated approaches that try and distinguish between actual and desired values in the organisation, the methods used to survey those values most often distort the results. Questionnaires and 360s are gamed easily and you know where to put your x-es in your sleep. Experts are biased with unconscious hypothesis while surveying and indexing the data.

Apart from inviting staff members at every organisational level to find workarounds and game the organisational system (infamous example: VW emissions), announcing a change initiative and defining the marching order and direction is having yet another detrimental effect that is largely underestimated.  Once a desired future state – or a value – is defined and plans are made that define and prescribe how to get there, present time weak signals, resistances or value streams that are not in line with the goal are not detected and neglected. Their information content is lost. It could be anything from a warning, a wisdom, a diversification, a potential innovation or a completely different emergent field for the company.

In organizational development, the key is to work with what is actually happening; not what should be happening. What are people really telling each other, their friends, peers and partners about their work? What if you could tap into that vast intelligence and get authentic, real time, immediate and relevant data that you could milk for existing problems, challenges as well as emergent trends and solutions?

Dave Snowden suggests a few things that need to be happening.

  • We make it easy for people to tell little stories that are indicating what is really happening in the company. The stories can be about a a certain attitude towards change or safety, they can indicate problems, challenges, or trends. The stories tell about the way things are done in the company.
  • A software, SenseMaker, can capture the stories and search for trends and challenges and the actual tendency for the company to engage a certain topic (like change, leadership, safety, collaboration, etc.). Snowden calls this mapping out the current dispositional state of the organisation.
  • Then the whole organization, or a department, can be nudged into the direction of the next possible generative steps. A guiding question is: “What can we do tomorrow that gets us more stories like these, and less stories like those”

I find this approach extremely relevant and elegant. The first is working with what is and with people as they are now. The basic assumption is that people know their jobs, and they know what is happening, both good and bad. This is mining the organisational gold. In its simplicity, this must also be a huge disappointment for most change agents and developmental experts. No big change initiative, no mindset change for employees, no bringing staff members up to a higher level of consciousness for them to do their job better. They can all stay as they are. And yet, we can work story by story and work with the systemic structures. Values can be exposed through the stories in the process – the actual, lived values. They are part of the current dispositional state of the system and the emergent one. We can work with what is doable, accessible, sense making and generative, now. This is extremely powerful.

In our opinion, this approach has an immense potential that goes far beyond organizational development. It can be applicable to working in a much different way with communities, governance, climate change, refugees, environmental issues, projects, leadership development and evaluation. Stay tuned. We will report back from our first experiences with Snowden`s SenseMaker software soon.

Here is a recent fun talk by Dave Snowden where he talks about this topic in more detail and depth. Listen up, since he tends to talk in zip-files of meaning you will need to unpack.


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Leading Change by Leading Self, Feb 2016, Stockholm, SE

EkskäretWe all have unconscious reactive patterns or blind spots. These get in the way when we want to lead and be creative, especially in challenging situations. A key is the ability to catch ourselves before we stumble and in that way become effective leaders in our lives. In this course you get to practice increasing your awareness of the hidden, unseen and illogic patterns that are holding you back so that you can get the results you want as a leader and change agent.

Leading change by Leading Self is a two day full immersion training for coaches, consultants and leaders, who

are familiar with the latest tools, models and approaches ranging from Teal Organizations, Integral & U Theory, to developmental Coaching and Immunity to Change;

still experience challenges in getting expected results and leading change in highly complex environments and global change/ sustainability initiatives.

Leading change means knowing intimately how change works. The potential for deep, permanent and transformational change is found in working with resistances, blind spots and ‘set-points’ found in your own and other’s experience. The cause of a set-point – and the potential for change – is often hidden from introspection and is well protected from insight. Finding the cause of a set-point means catching subtle shifts in your experience just before you employ an automatic escape mechanism, like becoming tired, intellectual, embarrassed or distracted. In this course you learn how to catch these shifts, and similar to martial arts, you learn how to turn them around to your advantage.

We call this aikido move of self leadership the ‘Lucky Luke Move’: we learn how to shoot faster than our own shadow. clipart_lucky-luke_animaatjes-23

Leading self comes before leading others. Doing the work on your part will greatly increase your skills in helping individuals and organizations change. This is what Bill O’Brien or Otto Scharmer talk about when they tell us how much the `inner place of an intervener´ matters to the success of an intervention. When doing this work you will see your choice field widen, and you can play with new possibilities you didn’t know were possible before. You can start leading and teaching the martial arts of change.

The course is for you, if recognize struggles where you are

  • Working in a highly complex environment and are not having the impact you desire
  • Struggling with important professional relationship
  • Feeling torn between competing expectations
  • at a point in your life, where you believe advancing professional capabilities is more about diving deeper into who you are than it is about learning how to use yet another set of concepts or techniques
  • Feeling powerless when trying to convey your vision
  • Wanting to find the purpose in your work
  • And would like to experience yourself in a depth and clarity you couldn’t access before

With this course you will get impactful insights into the following:

  • into the deeper, most hidden mechanisms of self leadership and change
  • Different kinds of options and decision making processes
  • What makes up personal authority and control over what you want to achieve
  • have insight into the deeper, most hidden mechanisms of self leadership and change
  • Foster your own vertical development from socialized to self authoring to self transforming mind
  • go from effectively lead yourself to effectively leading others

If the time has come to explore your interior landscape in order to have a greater external impact, this two-day workshop will provide guidance, experiences, resources, and a community of fellow travelers.

Methods: The course speaks to your own level of expertise and takes place in a safe and light environment. It uses methods and materials that can be seen through the lenses of Ken Wilber’s Integral Theory, Otto Scharmer’s U-Theory or Robert Kegan’s Immunity to Change work. They can also be cross-referenced with other more intuitive transformative processes, tools and methods.  This two days intensive delivers powerful lasting insights. It is also a preparation for a deeper transformative course that lasts 8,5 days.

What past participants say

“After just a few hours I had made more progress in my self leadership than I had done in any other course in my life. After two days you don’t want to stop, the insights you get about what really is going on are just awesome! The exercises – which are fully experiential – will take you deep into those pressing issues which are curbing your power, and this is also where the potential lies for major improvement, and with that I really mean major” /E

Prerequisites

No prior knowledge of the mentioned tools, models and approaches is necessary. However a willingness to look at your own patterns is. Prepare by thinking about and identifying some key challenges that you are facing in your life. This can be in your job, at home or any other situation.

We want to make sure that there is a good fit for you attending the course so we would like to make a short interview with each participant before the course. Download the flyer:  Leading Change by Leading Self

 

Next courses in Germany:  A 4 Day Module in München, Mach 11-14: Munich, Germany and the 9 day Transformative Intensive, April 9-17 in Schmagerow near Berlin. Course Description Schmagerow April 2016

 


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An Update: Mapping out Transformative Processes – Stages (1), Adaptive Pushback, Fallacies & Escape Mechanisms (2) and Tools & Methods for Course Correction (3)

The following slides picture transformative processes in their stages, the adaptive pushback and escape mechanisms that usually get triggered on the process path, as well as a variety of tools, methods and conditions (internal and external ones) that can be used for course correction or are favourable to the process. The diagrams picture patterns that I have observed in my work as coach for personal adult development over the last 15 years. These recognizable patterns are indicative of the stages of the process, its depth, the amount of resistance and the type of assistance needed. They have proven useful as guiding indicators, both for personal work and professional coaching. They are valid for both individual and group processes, although they would slightly differ for the collective transformation.

I used the U-shape as a visual metaphor, as it lends itself neatly to common archetypes of transformative work. The invitation is, however, to use your imagination and picture this as more than a linear process. Transformative, non-linear processes don’t follow a neat path with steps from 1 – 8. Rather, much like a holographic image, all of the process goes on all of the time. Just feel into this: some of the escape mechanisms and fears aren’t even triggered unless there is a goal that leads out of comfort zone.

The approaches for creating favourable conditions and the methods and tools for course correction that are listed are examples of tools that I have personally worked with and that have also proven extremely helpful. The Transformation Intensive Courses are conceived with most of these tools, approaches and frameworks in mind – an eclectic mix of instruments, used with experience, subtlety and high precision to make this work as simple, deep, light, and exciting as possible.

Listen here to my conversation with Ken Wilber about these 3 Diagrams and my work so far.

mailing list entwurf 1 Pushback - Mindshift IntegralCourse Correction - Mindshift Integral


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Leading Change by Leading Self

10906142_766865953399258_3939350231287480436_nThe training we propose is somehow different. We invite participants to take a very close look at how they operate in a seemingly counterintuitive way that is actually post-logic, and thus extremely powerful. Should you be interested in taking this closer look at your most sabotaging behaviours, your more familiar limitations and your immunities to change on the one side and at your heart felt dreams, latent potentials and performances on the other side, we invite you to come and see. You will be working on your own self as the basic playground. You get to know the mechanisms that operate in the more hidden dimensions of your consciousness – the mechanisms that are really fast, automatic, hidden from introspection, not accessible by logic, negative in their impact and yet most often protected by an ‘immune system’ that is geared to preserve a homeostatic equilibrium – a status quo in your life. If you have been trying to change a certain level of your performance, your financial status, your relationships and have had limited success, you will have an inkling of what we are on about.

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The next course will be held in Stockholm, September 31/ October 1st. In only two days, you will get an experiential clarity about how these mechanisms work, how they play out in your life and a good idea what to do about it. This works like an extra effective debug on your own inner is the only work operating system combined with a well-placed acupuncture treatment. This is the only kind of work that can potentiate all your other skills and competencies as a coach, trainer or professional. This is lean.

Leading change by Leading Self is a two day full immersion training for coaches and leaders, who are

  • familiar with the latest tools, models and approaches ranging from Agile methods to Holacracy, networked organizations, Integral Theory, Systems Thinking and Self Organizing teams.
  • still experience difficulties in getting expected results and leading change in highly complex environments.

Otto Scharmer, MIT, author of “Theory U: Leading from the future as it emerges” gives us a key insight: “The success of our actions as change-makers does not depend on what we do or how we do it, but on the inner place from which we operate”. This is like the Master in martial arts who knows that external actions will only be as good as the internal state, and that developing our inner world is just as important as developing our skills and toolbox.

The key to increasing our impact and becoming true Masters of our trade is to ‘upgrade’ our inner world to make it fit for the hyper-complex environments we work in. This is the “aikido move” of self leadership. This course will let you explore your inner world and perform some truly impactful “aikido moves”, which will greatly help you in your job and in other parts of your life.

 Leading Change by Leading Self: September 30 – October 1st, 2015  Stockholm, Sweden;  Venue: Crisp AB, Sveavägen 31 SE-111 34 STOCKHOLM.

Costs: Early Bird until August 30th, SEK 15.000. Afterwards SEK 17.000. excl. VAT; Prices include breakfast, lunch and coffee. Please ask for a personal introduction on skype. Write to anne@mindshift-integral.com.

Next full Transformation Intensive (9 days) will be in Germany, near Berlin/Stettin: October 31 – November 8, 2015. Please ask for details. http://www.schmagerow.com


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Reality is a process

Deconstructing transformative processes

I want to take a closer look at those change processes where simple, technical solutions don’t work.  Here, different approaches are needed. If the solution is not ready at hand or fails repeatedly the challenge is most often a complex adaptive one. Resistances and pushbacks are arising and make it difficult to get to the root causes of unwanted behaviour or undesired personal realities. This is where it gets interesting.

At the bottom of these phenomena are patterns with a combination of properties that are

  • difficult to detect (fast, automatic, hidden, with defraction),
  • difficult to understand (non-logic, pre- or non-conceptual origin, based on incorrect ‘meaning-coupling’), and
  • actively protected with what can be described as an immune reaction against the intended change: the wrong meaning-coupling or mapping error is considered of existential importance – hence resistances and pushback are getting more intense the closer the individual gets to the source of the unwanted behaviour (see graphic)

However, with the right understanding of these nature of these processes, a willingness to explore despite of discomfort and resistances and the adequate tools, transformation is not only possible, but can take days instead of lifetimes, hours instead of years.

deconstructing patterns of change


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Integral Leadership: Feeling into the Moment

How does it fit together: intuition, integrity, leadership, (construct) awareness, subtle states? Here is the attempt of an architecture. Presentation at the Integral Theory Conference, San Francisco,  July 18 -21, 2013 

integral leadership caspari

Academic Paper download here: Reams & Caspari_ITC2013

Powerpoint: ITC California 2013 Reams Caspari