Chat Cafe and Hong Kong College of Technology

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During a recent visit to Hong Kong I facilitated a chat cafe with students so they could practice their English with a native English speaker. During the session a recording crew were present as they needed footage to place in a new promotional video for the College. It is now available on Youtube through https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4coiqi4p2e0.

 HKCT

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Complex Tools and Methods Workshops

IMAG1135In collaboration with Complexability http://www.complexability.com.au. Creative Cognicion has facilitated two very successful Complex tools and Methods Workshops this year.

The workshops have provided participants with an overview of complexity and drawn on publically available Cognitive Edge methodology as well as providing follow up support and coaching for participants who wanted it.

These workshops have been facilitated by various collaborative members of Complexability Australia wide. We are now forming a community of interest around the methodology and will hopefully be able to offer people the opportunity to participate in further learning exchanges.

The next workshop on Complex Tools and Methods in Victoria is on April 16 2016.

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Hong Kong Students Cheer On Aussie Rules Players

075During a recent trip to Hong Kong, Hong Kong College of Technology invited Creative Cognicion to facilitate “Conversation in English Cafes” with small groups of students.

The purpose of the sessions was to expose students to native English speakers and encourage them to practice their English and learn about English speaking cultures.

Some innovation was needed to encourage the students to talk with the facilitator and one another so a session on “Where We Live” was devised.  Part of the session focused on Australian Rules Football using short video clips for the students to respond to. In this case the clips were of the successful 2105 Grand Finals of the Williamstown Football Club. www.williamstownfc.com.au.   

The students responded very positively, cheering on players as they kicked goals!!!!! The enthusiasm of the students has resulted in Creative Cognicion beign invited to facilitate further conversations specifically on Aussie Rules next year!!!!!!

The entire session was videoed and photographed and will form  part of a new publicity campaign for HKCT. This is being developed in conjunction with the opening of their new innovative campus at Ma On Shanhttp://www.hkct.edu.hk/?lang=en.

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Complex Tools and Methods Workshop

 

Complexability

 

Have you ever wondered what you might use to navigate your way through complex situations?

Complexability www.complexability.com.au is facilitating  a workshop on October 30 that will introduce people to some tools and techniques for working with complexity.

A previous workshop in June 22 participants said:

A great introduction to complexity. I am now starting to make some sense of the space I often work in”

“Good tips on working in this space. I now know I need to experiment and have the confidence to do this as traditional linear approaches do not work in complexity.”

The one-day workshop is designed for people addressing complex challenges such as improving health, educational attainment, employment, climate change, crime and recidivism rates, developing new business markets or changing organisational culture.

Based on complexity principles, the tools and methods in this workshop are specifically designed for working with complex issues, multiple stakeholders and differing perspectives.

This experiential workshop will equip you to:

Know when complex tools, methods and processes are appropriate to use
• Understand and apply the principles of complex facilitation to maximise participant collaboration and minimise facilitator influence
• Use the Cynefin framework for collaborative understanding, engagement, planning, decision making, innovation, strategy, change management and impact monitoring
• Use the power of narrative for making sense of complex issues
• Design ways of intervening in, and monitoring changes in complex environments

To register please go to:

http://stks.be/complexity-tools-methods-melbourne

or for the brochure please click complex tools and methodsoct

 

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Coaching and Taking Risk

Working with coachinga client recently, there was a realization that in order to move forward with skills and capabilities a great deal of personal risk was required. Many are happy to take this risk, but others need some safety nets to assist them along the way.

It becomes particularly difficult when we are now working in and increasingly so, a complex environment. We are taught that you plan and get a certain end result. This seems to be applied to ourselves and our own personal and professional development as well. Given the complex nature of the world today,  aiming in a straight line is not the best way to go . Rather it requires shifts and changes and working with risk ie engaging in probes and experiments in a complex space and learning from safe fail experiences. This is where the risk comes in. Some are able to do this and have a sense of adventure about it all whereas others recoil from it for a variety of reasons.

In thinking about this, the methods of Protective Behavoirs seemed a good way to go. This involves understanding the idea of risking on purpose, fun to feel scared and the like as per the continuum of safety. ( see http://www.cre-ativ-cognicion.com.au/2012/07/leadership-risk-and-personal-safety/ )It also involves developing safety networks that you can work with if needed. We might need a number of these as adults. Some for work and some for our personal lives. Along with this is being in touch with our own emotional signals as to where we are on the safety continuum and knowing we can make a choice a bout where we put ourselves.

The Principles and practice of Protective Behaviors and the concepts of complexity are  currently being applied in coaching work undertaken by Creative Cognicion as way of developing people to be effective in their working lives.

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Complexity Tools and Methods Workshop

Complexability

 

Have you ever wondered what you might use to navigate your way through complex situations?

Complexability www.complexability.com.au is facilitating  a workshop on June 22 that will introduce people to some tools and techniques for working with complexity.

This one-day workshop is designed for people addressing complex challenges such as improving health, educational attainment, employment, climate change, crime and recidivism rates, developing new business markets or changing organisational culture.

Based on complexity principles, the tools and methods in this workshop are specifically designed for working with complex issues, multiple stakeholders and differing perspectives.

This experiential workshop will equip you to:

• Know when complex tools, methods and processes are appropriate to use
• Understand and apply the principles of complex facilitation to maximise participant collaboration and minimise facilitator influence
• Use the Cynefin framework for collaborative understanding, engagement, planning, decision making, innovation, strategy, change management and impact monitoring
• Use the power of narrative for making sense of complex issues
• Design ways of intervening in, and monitoring changes in complex environments

To register please go to

https://www.stickytickets.com.au/24828

Brochure is available through complex tools and methods

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Delegation Shares Stories

delegation

 

 

I recently facilitated a session with a delegation from Ho Chi Min City in Vietnam. The session was around capability building in the public service. A session that could run the risk of being very dry and boring if not handled in the right way.

This is where the power of story came in. As part of the session, the delegation was asked to share their experiences around an open ended question. While the rest of the group was listening to the story teller, they were asked to write on a sticky note what they heard. We then grouped the issues together on the wall…like with like and gave each one a name. In this way, the group themselves owned the ideas as they emerged rather than me telling them what it was all about. We then used this as  a basis for discussion around building knowledge and capability.

The group displayed a great sense of humour and an enormous interest in learning. In particular they liked the  quote from Richard Branson:

Richard-Branson-Relationship-Quotes

 

 

 

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Learning Exchange

Meals_on_Wheels_Australia_2010

Meals on Wheels NSW and Queensland are hosting a Learning Exchange with Complexability and Dave Snowden from Cognitive Edge. This is an opportunity to exchange ideas on how we evaluate and make sense of what we need to achieve in a complex space. There will be a chance to hear from Dave and others and to engage in meaningful conversation to form and develop ideas further. 

There is one workshop in Brisbane on August 4 and another in Sydney on August 5.

If you would like to register here is the brochure and registration form. Learning Exchange Workshop

 

cynefin

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What is it that makes people become a Triceratops?

This may sound like a strange question! But it was certainly one that pre occupied people when the Organizational Zoo met Emotionally Intelligent leaders. Still confused? At a mini workshop, the issue of emotionally intelligent leadership was explored. To do this we used some work by Alain de Botton around the creed for life or alternatively 10 Commandments for Atheists! The document Resilience explains the characteristics and these would seem appropriate when thinking about emotionally intelligent leadership.

The group were asked to think about these characteristics and the attendant behaviors and how these might manifest themselves if someone was reflecting on their emotional intelligence as a leader. The participants were asked to link these behaviours with Organizational Zoo characters in order to talk about them at a behavioural level.

Some fascinating conversation ensued. Some of this focused on how a person could present in one way and be another especially if they had high emotional intelligence. They would be able to adapt their behaviors as needed. The overarching question about this  was whether it was a healthy approach or was someone merely being duplicitous to gain advantage!

Other conversations were around the notion of displayed particular behaviors associated with particular characteristics, this could engender or discourage other behaviors in people that you were leading. Of particular interest to the group was the characteristic of Wisdom. Was this an owl or a triceratops?  If they were an owl then the wisdom would be used to the benefit and encouragement of others. But a triceratops would have the wisdom but be world weary. They may have been a leader at one stage, but they had been ground down as they had seen it all before and their wisdom was not valued  so they had no chance of being a leader. Questions of can this change? Can an emotionally intelligent leader assist this to change predominated the discussion.

Great conversation, great pondering and great exploring all leading to learning.

http://www.organizationalzoo.com/characters/

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Sensemaking Catches the Whalers

When visiting a Sea Shepherd ship that is moored in my home town I was fascinated to hear the story of how they find the whalers in the Antarctic. It is a great story of working in a complex space, a lovely metaphor for organizations and how to share knowledge.

They have no idea where to find the whaling ships as these ships wish to remain under the radar so to speak. Sea Shepherd is faced with a huge ocean and all it brings with it. So what to do? They work with narrative fragments. There is a report of sighting of whale intestines, the information on the currents present another story, there has been a serious storm to the south west, there is a congregated flock of birds, the krill are on the move and on it goes. As the narrative emerges, patterns begin to emerge  and some basic sense making of these patterns provides knowledge as to where the whalers might be. Inevitably they are right and are able to move towards the whaling fleet and engage in interventions to disrupt their activities.  Often the path to the whalers is not direct, but the ships need to move around storms and turbulence or move with a storm in the appropriate direction. A seemingly straight line to the whalers has many twists and curves.

The knowledge derived from the patterns and the sense making is shared by the research ship to the other vessels which are then able to plot their course with the ongoing knowledge about whalers movements and the sea conditions harnessed by the research ship. When they reach the fleet, the disruptive intervention to create change is a shared knowledge initiative. Often this is dangerous and the crews in the Sea Shepherd ships subjected to push back behaviour from the whaling fleet and are often pushed close to exiting. But they achieve change in all this turbulence…….i.e 900 less whales killed this year.

It is a great story and one that can be used metaphorically in organizations or looked at much closely to develop our understanding of complexity, the use of narrative, sensemaking and designing interventions.

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