The thing to do when you don’t know is not to bluff and not to freeze, but to learn. The way you learn is by experiment, by trial and error and error.
Donella Meadows

Most of us build our identity around our knowledge and competence in employing certain known techniques or abilities. Making a deep change involves abandoning both and walking naked into the land of uncertainty.
Robert Quinn

The future doesn’t come with an instruction manual. People must be free to risk and experiment in a learning community. And as they become more open, flexible and creative, they bring those qualities into their workplace.
dya | the culture challenge

The things people say!

"The learning group was a very good process and gave both staff and board the opportunity to work on common issues. Having different perspectives in the room generated new energy and new commitment, as well as more ideas."

"The new framework wasn’t imposed on us, it came from us, it was ours. And that was empowering."

"I think we were fumbling in the dark to some extent before, hoping we wouldn’t fall over. But this process has given us clarity and confidence about who we are and what we do."

"Reflecting back on the process I didn’t find it easy, and I think this was a common view. Change is always more difficult and painful than we imagine. I learnt to all the time force myself to look at the bigger picture as opposed to getting drawn into the smaller stuff."

 

culturework

from work-centred life
to life-centred work

Changing the way
you change

Learning History

The detached, third-person narratives that dominate organisational life and provide ‘objective’ accounts of what is going on or what happened, tidy up life’s messiness but reduce personal experience to anecdote.

To transform our organisational ‘machines’ and improve the world we live in, we have to rescue and recover our humanness and learn from our stories and our real-life experience.

We’ll partner our outsider perspective with your insider knowledge to help you create a learning narrative that will engage people in reflection on real-life experience and support meaningful, self-directed change. read more

Action Inquiry

Conventional approaches to change assume that, like throwing a stone, it’s possible to develop a strategy, work out a plan, and move an identifiable ‘us’ from a knowable ‘here’ to a predictable ‘there’.To hit a known target.

A systems perspective makes different assumptions about how the world works and how things change. It doesn’t presume that someone somewhere has ‘the answer’, or even that there is ‘an answer’. Until we engage with the situation we’d like to change we may not fully appreciate the nature of the problem or what needs to change.

From a systems perspective, the way to change is to begin with ourselves - right here, right now, with the situation that holds meaning for us and use the experience of consciously engaging with it to learn how to change it.

Action Inquiry is a systems approach to development based on inquiring into direct personal experience rather than looking to ‘experts’ for answers. It’s a democratic and participative process in which ‘ordinary people’ actively think about and intervene in their own situation, come to a deeper understanding of what’s going on, address real problems and in the process learn their way into the future.

In a collaborative inquiry, a group comes together to explore issues of mutual concern. The objective is to produce knowledge that is practical and relevant, and to empower people as they develop their own know-why and know-how.

By adapting and changing in light of experience, people become more conscious practitioners and more effective agents of change. Their strategies and behaviours become aligned with their core purpose and values, and over time they close the gap between what they want, and what they do.

Want to talk?

If you would like to explore with us how you can develop communities of inquiry in which people who co-create the system learb together how to change it, click here

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