Appreciating Systems

Appreciating Systems for Genuine Efficiency
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Self Determination Theory can express itself only in a #social network #SDT #Labso @alexis8nicolas

July 18th, 2014 Posted in Strength Tags: , ,

For the three components of Intrinsic Motivation in Self Determination Theory to express themselves, a social network to which the person feels belonging is a necessity:

  • Autonomy is only possible when contrasted with belonging to a social network, otherwise, well, it’s just loneliness.
  • Competence exists when compared to what others do (or don’t), and, again, this is an emergent property of someone deep into a social network.
  • Relatedness, well, says it all: the belonging in itself is an attractive part of social networking.

So my conclusion is that, if Self Determination Theory has any relevance (and I’m convinced it has) then intrinsic motivation is tightly coupled with the intimate feeling of belonging to a social network.

And in case you feel that a social network can be a nuisance, try being alone. In that doesn’t appal to you either, then it might be time to experiment a Laboratory of Social Technologies, an co-created endeavour with a friend for teaching people how to leverage their social network to solve one or any kind of problem. Check it out at http://www.labso.org/!

Why do people don’t adopt #systemsthinking?

This is a recurring question in the LinkedIn forum “Systems Thinking World” hosted by Gene Bellinger. And one that haven’t had any satisfactorily answer so far.

Indeed, I think that the opposite question is valid too and even provides a hint as to one possible answer: “why do people using systems thinking don’t reverse to another way of thinking?

A more general question might be “why do people think the way they think?

Read more »

What are “good” #questions? (#strengths with @alexis8nicolas)

May 20th, 2014 Posted in Strength Tags: , , ,

Well, is this question a good question in itself? I’ll let you answer it after reading what follows.

This came out of an exchange with a friend and colleague: Alexis from YisY.

A good question is one that serve the purpose of the person asking it, obviously. It would be a bit long to explain what our purpose is with Alexis (hint: we’ve developed a kind of workshop to help people grow using “soft” social technologies which we named “Laboratory of Social Technologies” and a provisional french only leaflet is available here), but here’s what I came to.

If you have complementary criteria, please contribute in the comments below!

So, good questions might be:

  • questions that seek what is rather than what isn’t: they work from strengths (what you want, what you do that works, what you desire, etc.)
  • questions that bring closer rather than move away: they help bring ideas or people close rather than move them apart
  • questions that encourage collaborative rather than individual answers: they foster social constructionism or collective intelligence, if not wild emergence
  • open rather than closed questions: they make people think something new/more profound rather than stay on the surface and elicit automatic response
  • exploratory rather than justificatory questions: they invite “why if?” rather than “whose fault?”
  • questions that stretch rather than contract: they help people grow rather than force them to stay at their place
  • questions that encourage rather than threat: they help develop people rather than command them

What are your good questions?

Glass in half – A #strength-based #Lean perspective compared to other mental models…

March 11th, 2014 Posted in Lean, Strength Tags: , , ,

Someone just posted this on LinkedIn and I thought I might add my own vision of it (I don’t have the original from LeanPost):

half glass

 

 

 

This cartoon lacks a fourth picture, that of the strength-based Lean thinker (besides, does someone around here remember that Lean is indeed a business model [that is, to create value!], and not a cost-cutting program?!)

Woohoo, we already know how to fill half of the glass, and guess what, we still have room to have twice of it. We can do more!

The paradox of improvement and #change in a #deficit or #strength-based vision of the world…

I was considering change this morning, in the context of how the brain, as a complex adaptive system, deals with it (this is explained in my book “The Colors of Change“).

When you work from a deficit-based perspective on life (that is, you have a vision or an ideal in mind and all you see are gaps between it and reality around you, that is, problems):

It’s easy to point out problems, but it’s difficult to solve them.

It’s difficult because you will want to fill a gap using things absent. Which is difficult obviously.

On the contrary, when working from a strength-based mindset, the situation is just the opposite:

It’s hard to point out strengths, but it’s easy to improve on them.

Because strengths are so easy to use, they are hardly noticed on first sight, especially by the person expressing them. For others, it’s a bit easier because someone’s strengths might look so different to one’s own mental model that singling them out is easy.

As for improving, well, the person exercising a strength needs to notice it first before being able to do more of it. But once it’s made visible again (using a slight shift in perspective, for instance), then it’s far easier to do more of it, because you know exactly what it is: you’re going to do more of something you already have done before. Compare this to doing something you never did or for which you’re not so good at!

As far as efficiency is concerned, I’d rather think a bit more beforehand to understand the strengths at play, and then act more easily afterwards, rather than the opposite (jumping straight on a problem but being dragged in acting out a solution to it).

Of course, there’s the middle path where you identify a problem, and then work out to find times when the problem was not present, what the corresponding strengths might be that made the situation better, and then do more of them. A bit simpler than strict problem solving, though still longer than pure strength-based work.

So what? Well, my conclusion is to just don’t damn look for problems in the first place. Just identify what you want more of because you just seem to like it, identify how come you’re good at it, and just-do-more-of-it!!!

 

#Lean Six Sigma est mort – vive le #Strength-Based Lean Six Sigma ! | @alexis8nicolas & @davidshaked1

Alexis Nicolas teste le marché pour une formation Lean Six Sigma fondé sur les forces (strengths). Si vous êtes intéressés, allez voir là ! Lean Six Sigma est mort – vive le Strength-Based Lean Six Sigma ! | YisY.

 

Articles @LesEchos : Génération Y, les 5 révolutions de l’entreprise

My Twitter Social Ego Networks

David R. via Compfight

Je viens de lire cet article très intéressants sur Les Echos : Génération Y, les 5 révolutions de l’entreprise.

Je suis globalement d’accord avec le contenu. Mais j’ai l’impression que les entreprises actuelles encore 1.0 ont déjà perdu. L’avènement des smartphones et les applications sociales a déjà cassé les frontières de l’entreprise. Avant, l’espace interne d’une organisation était plus ou moins protégé de l’extérieur, une sorte de sanctuaire où pouvait se passer plein de choses sans qu’elles soient dérangées.

C’est maintenant fini. Nos smartphones nous rappellent sans cesse à ce qu’il se fait dehors, aux opportunités existantes ailleurs, à nos amis, à notre famille, etc. Seule une petite partie de notre esprit est concentrée sur l’interne d’une entreprise.

Si les entreprises n’embrassent pas maintenant cette ouverture en utilisant les mêmes fonctionnements sociaux (intelligence collective, travail collaboratif massif, encouragement à la co-création entre ce qu’elle est et les potentialités de ses collaborateurs, …) elle risque de péricliter.

Au lieu de laisser l’énergie de ses collaborateurs se disperser dans les réseaux sociaux (technologiques ou non !) l’entreprise se doit d’être le lieu où ces énergies pourront au contraire se connecter et aboutir à quelque chose qui lui soit utile (et évidemment utile aux collaborateurs, l’exploitation sauvage, c’est aussi fini, ça).

On n’embauche plus une personne, on embauche son réseau social. Que fait-on pour valoriser cela? S’il y a des “fuites sociales” vers l’extérieur, c’est que l’attrait de l’intérieur est insuffisant. Et si les gens sont attirés par le social, alors il faut faire du réseau social de manière encore plus intensive à l’intérieur, pour inverser le flux !

Quelle démarche active avez-vous dans votre entreprise pour connecter les cerveaux sociaux de vos collaborateurs?

@DanielPink + @SimonSinek? Connecting Drive to Golden Circles?

Dan Pink (in “Drive“) talks about Autonomy, Mastery and Purpose. Simon Sinek (in “Start with Why“) is all about What, How and Why?

I see a strong relationship between the two models:

  • What <–> Autonomy which would mean that people are better when they are autonomous on the work they do
  • How <–> Mastery which would mean people thrive when they develop their skills in how to do a job
  • and Why <–> Purpose which would mean that people are best when they can make meaning of their work

Incidentally, although I haven’t yet read Pink’s book (sorry Daniel ;), I’ve always wondered how these three values connect with those of Self Determination Theory (SDT) which are: Autonomy, Competence and Relatedness.

There’s a clear link between Competence and Mastery obviously. And connecting “Relatedness” with “Purpose”, although two words with different meanings, seems to me perfectly aligned with what spiritual masters tried to teach us long ago: that life meaning mostly comes out of helping others (or trivially summarized in the saying “man is a social animal”).

What do you think?

 

#Happiness @ work, science based #positivepsychology

January 15th, 2014 Posted in Strength Tags: , ,

Positive Psychology is the study of what makes people happy, instead of “just” studying how to bring them from sadness to a more neutral attitude. Popularized by Martin Seligman, it has now been the topic of numerous researches.

Some of the more known results are the 24 Characters, Strengths and virtues that concur to happiness. I would like to list them here so that we can ponder how we support those in our respective organizations to help foster more happiness at work.

The 24 are hereafter, questions are mine:

Wisdom and Knowledge (strengths that involve the acquisition and use of knowledge)

  • creativity: do we foster creativity? (eg through facilitation techniques)
  • curiosity: are people encouraged to ask questions?
  • open-mindedness: do we listen to uncommon ideas?
  • love of learning: do we help learning?
  • perspective and wisdom: do we recognize expertise of low ranked collaborators instead of just that (supposed) of management?

Courage (strengths that allow one to accomplish goals in the face of opposition)

  • bravery: do we encourage people to step out and express their concern, and then take their voice into consideration?
  • persistence: “constancy of purpose” was a motto of Deming. Are we capable of it?
  • integrity: do we take care of it?
  • vitality: do we demonstrate it?

Humanity (strengths of tending and befriending others)

  • love: do we seek to love our employees (which means to seek who they really are, and try to understand them)
  • kindness: are we kind and fault tolerant or ruthless?
  • social intelligence: do we cultivate this one?

Justice (strengths that build healthy community)

  • active citizenship / social responsibility / loyalty / teamwork: are these promoted?
  • fairness: are we known for it?
  • leadership: do we encourage it?

Temperance (strengths that protect against excess)

  • forgiveness and mercy: do we demonstrate these?
  • humility and modesty: do we practice these?
  • prudence: are we demonstrating it when taking decisions? Do we keep a door opened for opportunities or late advises?
  • self-regulation and self-control: do we avoid trampling on others?

Transcendence (strengths that forge connections to the larger universe and provide meaning)

  • appreciation of beauty and appreciation of excellence: do we get out of own way to recognize them when we encounter them?
  • gratitude: do we say “thank you” enough?
  • hope: can we demonstrate hope in the middle of problems?
  • humor and playfulness: can we conjugate work AND fun at the same time?
  • spirituality, or a sense of purpose and coherence: how do we collectively make sense of the company’s purpose?

I hope I have given you hope that these soft skills do indeed have a place in organizations. Studies have already shown that happy employees are more efficient, and that happy organizations outperform others (see Gallup annual reports since quite a few years)…

@NancyDuarte #resonate #free #book on making presentations: what if you could *really* turn your audience into a hero?

I’m reading the beginning of this great book from Nancy Duarte she just released for free in beautiful HTML 5: Resonate. The book’s (or the beginning of it at least) is about the Monomyth as it’s been described by Joseph Campbell in “A Hero’s Journey”.

The purpose of a presentation should be to tell a story and make your audience like it is the hero of it, by making it visualize “what could be” in comparison to “what is“. The intent is to “sell” your proposal of how to achieve the “what could be” part of your message.

Yet, I’m thinking of all these strength-based approaches to change I’ve learned these recent years. For instance:

  • Appreciative Inquiry could be used to have people remember of personal situations where they lived the opposite of the problem (that is a strongly positive situation, that is, an experience of “what could be”). Combined with the social constructionist principle of AI, this could help people co-create their journey rights when you’re presenting (instead of waiting for the “call to action” to start it at the end of the presentation)
  • Solution Focus is explicitly based on the premise that the Future Perfect has already happened, at least partially,and to find again what behavior supported it at that time that could be amplified and done again.

So, instead of just encouraging your audience to just imagine them being a hero, what about having them remember they’ve already been the hero, and probably more than once?

Indeed, the story has already begun albeit in a masqueraded way. The real threshold would then be to have them commit to it and reveal it to the world.

Instead of holding the mirror where the audience can see itself in, what about giving them the mirror to play with? To discover sides of themselves they’ve never imagined they had? And then let them experiment with it right away?

This, I will ponder. I will continue reading the book, because it’s just excellent so far!

 

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