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Systems thinkers have long adopted the iceberg analogy as a way to describe the events, patterns, and underlying structures that drive the behaviors that affect performance within a system. The iceberg is a perfect metaphor because it depicts just how much of what is really going on lies beneath the surface—out of sight. For many, out of sight also means out of mind. That mindset limits an organization’s ability to improve, live up to its potential, and consistently accomplish its stated goals and objectives. In this analogy,...
Green Team photo courtesy of NHH.org.uk.
Creating a sustainable workplace can be pretty easy to do if you've got a green team running the show. Green team members aren't outsiders you bring in to teach workers how to be eco-friendly. They're actually members of your staff who learn about sustainable practices as a group so they can work together to develop strategies that will make your workplace a sustainable space. Five ingredients and a little follow through's all it takes to grow a grassroots green team, according to research. It starts with involvement. If you...
How do today’s leaders create profound innovation in the face of complexity? According to an executive report by the IBM Institute for Business Value, they do it by “embracing dynamic tensions.” In a report released in July, "Cultivating organizational creativity in an age of complexity," Barbara J. Lombardo and Daniel John Roddy assert that “leaders who embrace the dynamic tension between creative disruption and operational efficiency can create new models of extraordinary value. . . . By harnessing the...
Over my lifetime, I have learned from experience that holding an intention for change can result in creating the desired change. I have seen it work in bringing people and relationships into my life, creating the work I desired, and helping me develop a path forward to create the change. Essentially, I learned that if I could envision it, I could bring it into reality. It has worked so effectively that I know I have to be careful that what I think I want to create is what I really want or need.   It took me awhile to understand why...
If there is one simple ability that makes the most difference in effective leaders who are able to enroll other people in their projects, it is the ability to initiate and reach resolution in areas that arouse anxiety in either party. That same skill enables people who are not formal leaders to move from feeing frustrated and powerless to empower themselves to address something that is a important to them—something that others may not wish to address. Using this skill, both leader and followers are able to get results in territory where...

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