Posts tagged with the category Improving Performance
(ONE)+ = (YOU + ME) LOVE
Momentum in manufacturing happens if the marketing "stars" align and the bullwhip effect has been tamed. If you work in supply chain management or recall your MBA days, maybe you remember the Near Beer study? Forio.com provides not only a wonderful explanation of the conundrum framed by the study but also offers a nice (but...
Personal Resilience as a Response to Trauma: Recovery or Transformation?
The March 28th edition of New York Times magazine had a deeply inspiring article about some unique programs being adopted by the U.S. Army to help returning war veterans with post-traumatic stress disorder. Instead of medical treatment and therapy, the programs focus on activating a natural capacity of the human being for growth, learning, and...
Team Work and the Role of Reflection
Reflection is one of the hardest things for leaders to implement. Even if leaders knew the value of reflection, it would be hard to implement. As it is, reflection is an unknown capacity that has enormous potential to accelerate learning. According to Jack Mezirow, founder of transformative learning theory, without reflection, there is no learning...
Innovation as Tension Resolution
David Straus, founder of Interaction Associates, defined a problem as "a situation someone wants to change." I kept wondering why it was so hard to get my daughter to keep her room clean until I realized that, given Straus' definition, only one of us has a problem. That is, only one of us wants the situation to change. Situation...
Organizational Lifecycles and the Renewal Stage
Like humans, organizations develop and evolve. Organizational development follows a defined lifecycle, from inception to maturity to eventual decay if operations cease. Forty-six percent of organizations generally fold within a year-and-a-half of opening. The ones that remain in business generally average a median lifespan of seven years. So...
More About Corporations as Engaged Citizens: A Reflection from Italy
I write this entry while living and working from Cefalù, Sicily, a town not only steeped in centuries-old tradition, but part of one of the countries currently struggling to survive as a member of the European Union. Evidenced by the hand waves and chatter in the streets, people in Cefalù know each other and have a communal identity...
I’ve learned some new things about inquiry recently. I’ve been working with inquiry for some time and I love learning new ways of practicing. The three things I learned came from my research in neuroscience. I have been reading Allan Schore’s 1994 book, Affect Regulation and the Origin of the Self: The Neurobiology of Emotional...
Making Time for Dialogue
I am teaching a course on generative and strategic dialogue this term and, through the amazing dialogue with my students, I am reminded of the importance and challenge of this communicative practice. Dialogue asks us to become more aware and intentional about how we listen, think, and speak. In his 1999 book, Dialogue and the Art of Thinking...
Organizational Culture and Its Effects on Creativity
Culture links people together. It does so, according to organizational theorist Edgar H. Schein, by allowing people to band together as a group and develop a unique set of beliefs and practices that are absorbed and accepted by all of its members. In time, the group’s beliefs and practices, which consist of shared assumptions, perceptions,...
The Challenges of a Budding Organizational Consultant
As a newcomer in the field of organizational consulting, I have the advantage of being either the naively arrogant child who declares the emperor has no clothes! or the person who comes from a foreign land and is forced to quickly confront the differences in the visible and communicated culture. When I decided to change careers in my early 40s, I...
How to Make Communication Technology Work for Positive Social Change
We live and work in the information age, an era of global knowledge sharing and social networking enabled by a variety of information, communication, and collaboration technologies (or ICCT). What do we do about it? The rescue of the Chilean coal miners is a fine example of how modern digital technology aided people from around the world to be...
Ironic Outcomes: How to Get the Opposite of What You Want
About three years ago, I had a coaching conversation with a human resources manager for a retail company. The manager confided in me that conflict she was experiencing made her uncomfortable. She described the lengths to which she would go to avoid raising challenging issues or delivering candid feedback. By way of example, she described a damaged...
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