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WaysFinding – Enabling coherent explore spaces


Image by EvGenIt, Pixabay

I have written before about the need to embrace messy coherence or in more technical terms, coherent heterogeneity, a term I first encountered in the work of Dave Snowden. While most intuitively understand this need, how to achieve it practically remains elusive. We are emerging from a time where alignment and efficiency were pursued like … Continue reading WaysFinding – Enabling coherent explore spaces

Rhythm, ritual and boundaries


  “When patterns are broken, new worlds emerge.” ― Tuli Kupferberg A few weeks ago, I wrote about what I experienced as the “strange in-between”, knowing that everything has changed, but still feeling as if nothing has changed. So much has changed since then. As we enter our third week of lockdown here in South … Continue reading Rhythm, ritual and boundaries

Facing the scary (but exciting) boundary between competence and incompetence


“This is not just an era of change; it is increasingly a change of era.” y General Sir Nick Carter, head of the British Arm I tend to avoid using the term VUCA; it has become overused (particularly by consultants) and increasingly is ‘just another buzz word’. It is, however, interesting to reflect on why … Continue reading Facing the scary (but exciting) boundary between competence and incompetence

7 lessons I’ve learnt consulting as a “complexity practitioner”


I’ve now been using a complex and emergent approach to consulting for around 17 years.  A friend of mine read me his coaching “manifesto” recently including his approach to internal change consulting.  It made me think about what I’ve learnt about using this approach so I decided it might be useful to reflect on them … Continue reading 7 lessons I’ve learnt consulting as a “complexity practitioner”

7 Differences between complex and complicated


Decision-makers commonly mistake complex systems for simply complicated ones and look for solutions without realizing that ‘learning to dance’ with a complex system is definitely different from ‘solving’ the problems arising from it. – Roberto Poli Many people believe that complexity is just higher order complicatedness i.e. that there is a continuum and that the difference … Continue reading 7 Differences between complex and complicated

All that jazz … making coherence coherent


One of the assertions I make quite often nowadays, is that we need to move from focusing on alignment, to focusing on coherence.  I’ve found it interesting that out of all the potentially controversial statements I make, this one seems to generate an inordinate amount of questions and disagreement.  It is understandable as this notion … Continue reading All that jazz … making coherence coherent

Why we suck at “solving wicked problems”


Problems: Wicked, complex, intractable, or adaptive  … whatever we choose to call them, we seem to suck at solving them and we often get profoundly overwhelmed and stuck.  I believe the reason for this is hidden in the language I used in the title and previous sentence  (… and no it’s not the adjectives … … Continue reading Why we suck at “solving wicked problems”

The peripheral; extravagance; and paradox: Whistler reflections by Renée Koch


I asked my friend Renée Koch, who was a faculty member at the Whistler Retreat earlier this year, to contribute a guest blog reflecting on her experience and learning at the retreat and beyond.  I love her focus on the peripheral; extravagance; and paradox.   What struck me is how the notion of extravagance again challenges … Continue reading The peripheral; extravagance; and paradox: Whistler reflections by Renée Koch