How to Invigorate the quality of collaborative change initiatives

In a previous blog I wrote about the importance to shift from focusing on events to processes.  When we shift our attention in this way events can become milestones within a process and arealso  carefully designed to serve a larger purpose.  In addition, events need to be seen in the context of good process architecture (e.g. for better water management, energy efficiency, or responsible supply chains) where it is the ability of differing stakeholders to think together and lead collectively that counts. In these ways we create a spirit of collective leadership. How can we use the Compass as a check
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Shifting Focus: Moving from Events to Collaborative Change Processes

  Good conversations change the way people think and act. When people acknowledge each other as people it becomes easier for them to overcome their differences. Yet many leaders are more focused on events and publicity than the slow and challenging task of consensus building. This is often because the complex environment of a collaboration process can feel threatening to many participants. And when threatened, the most normal human reaction is often to criticize the process or content (when one is not in charge) or to tighten control (when one is in charge). It does not sound comfortable does it?
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“Transforming Our World” through Collective Leadership

The Sustainable Development Goals, in particular SDG17,  have made it even clearer that in order to address global challenges, the joint capacity of leaders to become catalysts for change is called for. Collective leadership is one of the cornerstone of our response to the global sustainability challenges, irrespective of whether we are creating responsible supply chains, developing innovative technology for climate adaptation, or engaging stakeholders for better water resource management. It was Peter Senge who drew attention to the essence of leadership, which, in his view is “…about learning how to shape the future. Leadership exists when people are no longer victims
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Patterns of Aliveness, Collaboration and a Sustainable Future

We all know a feeling of aliveness – when we are happy, yet, calm, when our heart resonates, when we feel most connected with life and when our humanity expands. At the same time, we are intrinsically linked to the order of life within us and around us – people, architecture, nature. We are constantly being created by this order – as much as we participate in creating this order. When we become aware of Aliveness and the role it plays in our endevours, we also become aware that co-creation works best in a collaborative space where there is “life”
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How Corporations Can Ensure Commitment to Implementing Sustainable Development Goals

Many people consider it a historical date: September 25th 2015 saw an agreement of 195 member countries of the United Nations to adopt what is known as 17 “Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)”, a joint commitment to end poverty, ensure prosperity for all and protect the integrity of the planet. It has become clear since then that implementing the new global “ Agenda 2030” will require collaboration at scale between governments, corporations and civil society. Read more at Huffingtonpost… This blog post looks at the question of leadership for sustainability. For more information on the Art of Leading Collectively, checkout the inside the book
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A pattern of human competences in interaction

Over my years of working in complex collaboration projects and institutional change management, I took notice of what shifted actors into a more collaborative space. Shifts tended to occur around personal competences. People brought these competences in or they developed them jointly with their collaborators. Although, nothing I noticed was radically new – what was new was the uniquely unfolding combinations of these competences, forming a constantly changing pattern of mutually supportive ingredients . And it was the aliveness of this  presence that made a difference. In a stuffy room in Salvador de Bahia all the ingredients were there. Each participant had a very valid reason for
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Becoming Mindful

There are a techniques helping to develop mindfulness and they can be learnt. Although meditation can take us a long way towards mindfulness, there is more to it – at the core of mindfulness is the ability to become more than our own separate mind and feelings. When the mind finally becomes quite, it sets free other competences – compassion, gratitude, humility – as if these elements were quietly waiting to be set free. The key technique for mindfulness is mastering the mind and understanding that at the core of the human heart is love. If we access this place
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Life moves towards Balance

Finding our balance requires incorporating new techniques into our lives. There are many ways to get it right – from a regular workout at the Gym, to retreating into nature, to meditating or playing with our kids. Yet I believe we can go one step further in understanding how balance works and why. Can we simply learn from life? Balance requires a combination of three different energies in order to bring forth life, maintain its growth and take it to the next level. The first energy is our passion for life, for what we do, for how we relate to others. This passion
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Business leaders as catalysts for change

Wanting to make a difference for a better world is probably the most widely suppressed desire in organizations and among senior leaders. Beneath the surface of many high performing top executives is a vague disappointment with the competitiveness of the corporate world, and an unexpressed deep desire to create more meaning, more connectedness, and more relatedness. A senior manager from a multinational company told me “What I feel is that every person actually has a core that wants to serve … and it is more about uncovering it, because this gets silenced, cut off, nobody is asking for it, nobody
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Leading more consciously towards sustainability

Why is a change towards sustainability so slow to realize within most companies? Every change in an organization results from the choices made by dedicated people. Leaders are co-creators of an interconnected reality. There is hope that the leadership in global as well as local organizations will respond – out of a sense of interconnectedness and co-responsibility – to questions about human dignity, inclusiveness, and fairer distribution of wealth. In this way leadership might finally respond to the call for a sustainable world. A leader in a prominent position is bound to be a mirror for an organization. He or she
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