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Steve Onyett www.steveonyett.co.uk Solution focused consultancy, coaching, facilitation and research Leading for improvement within living systems Steve.

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Presentation on theme: "Steve Onyett www.steveonyett.co.uk Solution focused consultancy, coaching, facilitation and research Leading for improvement within living systems Steve."— Presentation transcript:

1 Steve Onyett Solution focused consultancy, coaching, facilitation and research Leading for improvement within living systems Steve Onyett 2 nd December 2009

2 Steve Onyett Solution focused consultancy, coaching, facilitation and research Leading from Within Living Systems- 2 nd December 2009 A facilitated exploration of what our emerging understanding of living systems tells us about leadership for sustainable development

3 Steve Onyett Solution focused consultancy, coaching, facilitation and research Leading from Within Living Systems: Objectives Clarify the outcomes you seek from effective leadership Experience being part of living systems and what this means for our work towards more sustainable futures Share positive experiences of what works in leadership for improvement Reflect on leading-edge thinking on leadership Explore what this means for you at local level Plan action to take forward this important topic in concrete ways Connect with others on a similar journey at and beyond the event.

4 Steve Onyett Solution focused consultancy, coaching, facilitation and research Some thoughts and ideas... How do these connect to your world as experienced? How might they help you in what you need/want to do?

5 Steve Onyett Solution focused consultancy, coaching, facilitation and research Modern leadership theory....is about leading and managing complex adaptive systems that operate as a series of networks with multiple stakeholder interests. Beinecke & Spenser, 2007

6 Steve Onyett Solution focused consultancy, coaching, facilitation and research Law of the Situation Leadership is transient and contextual Where knowledge and experience are needed the person who can is the right person to do it. Not all leadership should be determined by position power yet people with authority should be prepared to exercise it.

7 Steve Onyett Solution focused consultancy, coaching, facilitation and research The essence of leadership and management …is the creation of environments in which people can be creative.. Where they can exercise power to achieve outcomes valued by end users, the people that care about them and that they care about, and other key stakeholders.

8 Steve Onyett Solution focused consultancy, coaching, facilitation and research The Triple Bottom Line Benefits to the organisation- financial and otherwise Benefits to people within the organisation- both those that stay and those that leave, but as its ambassadors. Benefits to the local community and beyond

9 Steve Onyett Solution focused consultancy, coaching, facilitation and research Understanding our context Working well with living systems means working well with complexity –See for example – Bob Hudson. (2006). Whole systems working- a Guide and Discussion paper. CSIP-ICN Jake Chapman. (2004). Systems failure. Why governments must learn to think differently. London: Demos

10 Steve Onyett Solution focused consultancy, coaching, facilitation and research Complexity theory..or just Recognising how the universe works and just getting on with it.. theory

11 Steve Onyett Solution focused consultancy, coaching, facilitation and research Leonardo da Vinci Those who take for their standard anyone but nature- the mistress of all masters- weary themselves in vain

12 ComplicatedComplexSimple Source: Brenda Zimmerman, PhD Formulae have only a limited application Raising one child gives no assurance of success with the next Expertise can help but is not sufficient Every child is unique Uncertainty of outcome remains Raising a Child z Recipe is essential z Recipes are tested to assure replicability of later efforts z No particular expertise; knowing how to cook increases success z Recipes produce standard products z Certainty of same results every time Following a Recipe A Moon Rocket z Formulae are critical and necessary z Sending one rocket increases assurance that next will be ok z High level of expertise in many specialized fields & coordination z Rockets similar in critical ways z High degree of certainty of outcome From - Plsek, P. Complexity, culture and large systems change presentation

13 Steve Onyett Solution focused consultancy, coaching, facilitation and research Questions? (after Chapman, 2004) Are we spending too much time trying to apply complicated solutions to complex problems? What approach would we adopt if we accepted that systems cannot be controlled nor their behaviour predicted? What might we need to do differently?

14 Steve Onyett Solution focused consultancy, coaching, facilitation and research Build collective understanding of what working in complex systems really means Small changes can have big effects..and big changes very little effect Emergence- the whole is greater than the sum of the parts Tolerance of uncertainty and flexibility Recognising the futility of control

15 Steve Onyett Solution focused consultancy, coaching, facilitation and research The pointlessness of control from Jenny Rogers Influencing Skills You cant force people to work effectively on something they disagree with. Organisations are so complex and subject to so many diverse influences that it is pointless trying to control them. Distance from most senior to most junior makes it unlikely that control can be exercised over that stretch Much control is unnecessary -where there is openness and willingness to give feedback Control reduces risk taking- a necessary precondition for the innovation on which organisations depend Its exhausting and your time can be better spent!

16 Steve Onyett Solution focused consultancy, coaching, facilitation and research The problem of Big Planning Long term planning and the rigid structures, precise task definitions and elaborate rules that often accompany it, may be positively dangerous, fixing an organisation in pursuit of a particular vision when an uncertain world requires flexible responses. Hudson, 2006 May need holding frameworks for relevant subsystems to keep direction and coherence

17 Steve Onyett Solution focused consultancy, coaching, facilitation and research What implications of more ecological thinking? Push and exhortation from leaders and policy makers can be counter-productive.

18 Steve Onyett Solution focused consultancy, coaching, facilitation and research Peoples ability to stay the same will always be greater than our ability to make them different

19 Steve Onyett Solution focused consultancy, coaching, facilitation and research Working with your stakeholders- what is their Readiness to change? Confidence to change? Judgement of the importance of change?

20 Steve Onyett Solution focused consultancy, coaching, facilitation and research Respectfully consider these cells and provide information to inform AdvantagesDisadvantages Change+- No change-+

21 Steve Onyett Solution focused consultancy, coaching, facilitation and research What implications of more ecological thinking? Change needs to happen bottom-up but the right conditions need to be created. …like gardening, or throwing a party?

22 Steve Onyett Solution focused consultancy, coaching, facilitation and research Working with complexity values Allowing solutions to emerge by: –encouraging rich interaction, removing barriers and oppressive controls –giving space and time, –not over specifying means

23 Steve Onyett Solution focused consultancy, coaching, facilitation and research Working with complexity values Valuing multiple perspectives Using multiple approaches that make effective use of experience, experimentation, freedom to innovate and working at the edge of knowledge and experience.

24 Steve Onyett Solution focused consultancy, coaching, facilitation and research Comfort Zone Discomfort Zone Panic Zone Working with complexity as surfing the edge of chaos, Pascale, et al (2000).. In systems as in life, when threatened, [it] move towards the edge of chaos. At this edge experimentation and mutation occur from which creative solutions can emerge. When this occurs living systems self organise and new forms or patterns emerge. The challenge for leaders is to disturb or disrupt the movement at the edge to provoke the desired outcome – sometimes referred to as perturbing the edge. McKimm et al, (2008)

25 Steve Onyett Solution focused consultancy, coaching, facilitation and research..Success is the ability to go from one failure to another with no loss of enthusiasm. Winston S Churchill

26 Steve Onyett Solution focused consultancy, coaching, facilitation and research Transformational leadership- roots James MacGregor Burns defined transformation as that which turns followers into leaders and leaders into moral agents. Transformational leadership occurs when people elevate each other into a higher level of motivation and morality. Thus inextricably linked with the social meaning that people attach to their work.

27 Steve Onyett Solution focused consultancy, coaching, facilitation and research Creating a better space ba A Japanese term, meaning a shared space for emerging relationships or in more general terms a context where meaning may emerge. Originally proposed by philosopher Kitaro Nishida

28 Steve Onyett Solution focused consultancy, coaching, facilitation and research Real teams have.. Clear and shared objectives Members who have to work closely together to achieve the objectives of the team This interdependency includes users and their supporters Members who have different and clearly defined roles within the team The minimum number of team members required to get the job done

29 Steve Onyett Solution focused consultancy, coaching, facilitation and research Thought for the day. Today Programme. Radio th February 2009 Here is the gift of relationship. It lies at the very core of what it is to be human. Rev David Wilkinson, principal of St Johns College, Durham

30 Steve Onyett Solution focused consultancy, coaching, facilitation and research Holons- Whole-parts The Transcend and include principle

31 Steve Onyett Solution focused consultancy, coaching, facilitation and research Holons- Whole-parts Both systems and psychoanalytical thought share the premise that every part of an organisation represents the whole.

32 Steve Onyett Solution focused consultancy, coaching, facilitation and research An example in mental health It is important not to underestimate the human interaction that is at the heart of mental health treatment and care. This interaction is an expression of individual and organisational values. Irish Mental Health Commission Vision for Change, 2009, p.14

33 Steve Onyett Solution focused consultancy, coaching, facilitation and research So what DOES work to build relationship? Trust Transparency and fairness with respect to the exercise of power and influence Giving away and sharing power Giving back- feeling like an asset not a liability Happiness Noticing and affirming the good Working to a shared agenda Taking time Finding a good space to work and develop together

34 Steve Onyett Solution focused consultancy, coaching, facilitation and research Trust and social capital In the absence of trust and mutual obligation staff become mired in mistrust and self preservation, while the organisation declines. Communities and organisations with high levels of social capital work more productively and cooperatively than those with low levelsand are also healthier. Welsh, T. & Pringle, M. (2001).

35 Familiarity Reliable Information Clear Communications Integrity Shared Values Shared Vision Trusting Relationships Change/Uncertainty/Dishonesty Conflicting Needs Pressures/Stress Complex/Poor Data Unclear Communications Lack of Time / Prior Experience Distrusting Relationships Source: Richard Lauve, MD (VHA Inc.)

36 Steve Onyett Solution focused consultancy, coaching, facilitation and research Four underpinning principles in the new DH approach to change CO-PRODUCTION –To engage people across the system to work together to make change happen SUBSIDIARITY –Ensuring that decisions are made at the right level, and as close to the user as possible. CLINICAL OWNERSHIP AND LEADERSHIP –Building on the Darzi concept of staff as Practitioners, Partners and Leaders. SYSTEM ALIGMENT –Aligning different parts of the system towards the same goals as a way of achieving complex cultural change TAKEN TOGETHER THEIR WHOLE IS GREATER THAN THE SUM OF THEIR PARTS

37 Steve Onyett Solution focused consultancy, coaching, facilitation and research Co-production and working from strengths … people are defined entirely by their needs and so those needs become the only asset they have. No-one should be surprised when people then behave in ways that perpetuate such needs (11). When..assets are deliberately ignored or sidelined they atrophy. (11)

38 Steve Onyett Solution focused consultancy, coaching, facilitation and research Co-production and working from strengths Co-production demands that public service staff shift from fixers who focus on problems to enablers who focus on abilities. … This role is not recognised or rewarded within the management structures that are currently in place. (13)

39 Steve Onyett Solution focused consultancy, coaching, facilitation and research Front-line staff are essential to delivery and empowerment... Their morale is as important as client morale. Yet in practice, the participation that they are asked to extend to clients is often not extended to them. New Economics Foundation. Co-Production. A manifesto for growing the core economy

40 Steve Onyett Solution focused consultancy, coaching, facilitation and research System alignment Envision the future together and ambitiously Communicating that future in an engaging way is the task of leadership Have end users needs and aspirations at the centre of that vision. Ensure that the voices of end users and those are heard loudest in shaping the vision

41 Steve Onyett Solution focused consultancy, coaching, facilitation and research The energy of social movements Social movement thinking is about connecting with peoples core values and motivations and mobilising their own internal energies and drivers for change… …[evidence from change management studies show] people change what they do less because they are given analysis that shifts their thinking than because they are shown a truth that influences their feelings..rather than a single individual, it is a network of leaders at multiple levels who guide and mobilise the successful movement Helen Bevan of The NHS Institute

42 Steve Onyett Solution focused consultancy, coaching, facilitation and research Subsidiarity Decision making should be located as closely as possible to the place where actions are taken. This means addressing the flight from authority.. and helping people love their monkeys!

43 Steve Onyett Solution focused consultancy, coaching, facilitation and research.. Sloterdijk (1987) observes that the whole of postmodern society is living within an internal dialogue or cognitive environment of a universal, diffuse, cynicism. As a predominant mindset of the post-1960s era, Sloterdijk takes the cynic not as an exception but rather as the average social character. It is argued that at both the personal and institutional levels, throughout our society there is a widespread disturbance of vitality, a bleakening of the life feeling, a farewell to defeated idealisms, and a sense of paralyzing resentment. DAVID COOPERRIDER, 1999

44 Steve Onyett Solution focused consultancy, coaching, facilitation and research Cynicism limits imagination: The cultural challenge Problem and deficit-based culture –extending into public communication and the media A preference for experts and answers Cynicism passing for sophistication From Global AI Conference Keynote by Bliss Browne, President Imagine Chicago- imaginechicago.org. November 2009

45 Steve Onyett Solution focused consultancy, coaching, facilitation and research A cynic, after all is a passionate person who does not want to be disappointed again Zander and Zander, The Art of Possibility. 2000, p.39

46 Steve Onyett Solution focused consultancy, coaching, facilitation and research Involve young people as leaders (e.g. of an appreciative interview process) to disarm cynicism and activate hope. An inspiring way to engage in conversation about the future is by engaging in conversation WITH the future Strength-based questions asked by young people help expand images of possibility and build affirmative competence. From Global AI Conference Keynote by Bliss Browne, President Imagine Chicago- imaginechicago.org. November 2009

47 Steve Onyett Solution focused consultancy, coaching, facilitation and research The magic -Abrahadabra From the Aramaic.. I will create as I speak. From Global AI Conference Keynote by Bliss Browne, President Imagine Chicago- imaginechicago.org. November 2009

48 Steve Onyett Solution focused consultancy, coaching, facilitation and research Language is a moral choice. To frame social development in problem talk creates expertise and focus on what communities dont want and what doesnt work. To regenerate communities requires focusing on possibilities, focusing on what works instead of whats wrong. From Global AI Conference Keynote by Bliss Browne, President Imagine Chicago- imaginechicago.org. November 2009

49 Steve Onyett Solution focused consultancy, coaching, facilitation and research From Growing Corporate Cultures of Sustainability and Well Being. Jim Hartzfelt. World AI Conference. Nepal. 2009

50 Steve Onyett Solution focused consultancy, coaching, facilitation and research Deficit based approaches Provide opportunities for lamentation and blame that weaken the fabric of relationships Bring the past into the future- so slow- focuses attention on yesterdays causes- better to bring a preferred future into the present Offer a visionless voice Create cynicism, alienation and fatigue

51 Steve Onyett Solution focused consultancy, coaching, facilitation and research Appreciative Inquiry Is about developing the competence to CHOOSE a way of thinking Appreciative Inquiry is the cooperative search for the best in people, their organizations, and the world around them. It involves systematic discovery of what gives a system 'life' when it is most effective and capable in economic, ecological and human terms. From An opportunity to learn more about Appreciative Inquiry Presentation by Anne Radford

52 Steve Onyett Solution focused consultancy, coaching, facilitation and research Appreciate Best of what is Imagine What might be Design What should be Create What will be Identify problem Conduct root cause analysis Brainstorm solutions & analyze Develop treatment - action plans Deficit-based change Strength-based change Problem Solving Appreciative Inquiry Problem Metaphor: Organisations are problems to be solved Linear, machine-like metaphors; Mystery Metaphor: Organisations are alive, appreciative systems are universes of strengths via relationship From Global AI Conference Keynote by David Cooperrider. November 2009

53 Steve Onyett Solution focused consultancy, coaching, facilitation and research The AI 4-D Cycle for Applied Positive Change Discovery What gives life? The best of what is. AppreciatingDiscovery What gives life? The best of what is. Appreciating Dream What might be? EnvisioningResults/ImpactDream EnvisioningResults/Impact Design What should be – the ideal? Co-constructingDesign Co-constructing Destiny How to empower, learn, and improvise? SustainingDestiny Sustaining AffirmativeTopic From Global AI Conference Keynote by David Cooperrider. November 2009

54 Steve Onyett Solution focused consultancy, coaching, facilitation and research We manifest what we focus on and we grow toward what we persistently ask questions about or What we talk about gets bigger! Solution focus/appreciative inquiry- exploring what works so that we can do more of it

55 Steve Onyett Solution focused consultancy, coaching, facilitation and research AI works to build the positive core of the organisations involved. Organisations need a lot less fixing and a lot more affirmation. Appreciation builds relationships, collective intelligence, and freedom to innovate From An opportunity to learn more about Appreciative Inquiry Presentation by Anne Radford

56 Steve Onyett Solution focused consultancy, coaching, facilitation and research The Power of Appreciation....rests with its self-reinforcing and self- generative capacity Srivastva and Cooperrider, 1999 This requires inclusion, safety in participation and good communication = Effective team working and leadership Teams are where this is modelled and enacted

57 Steve Onyett Solution focused consultancy, coaching, facilitation and research Sparkling leadership As you look back what sparkling moments stand out for you as experiences of being really well lead or managed? What did you learn about worked well? As you look back what sparkling moments stand out for you as examples of where you were really effective as a leader or someone making a positive contribution to change? What did you notice worked well for you at that time?

58 Steve Onyett Solution focused consultancy, coaching, facilitation and research Leadership as an ethical endeavour Positive Emotional Climate = an environment where managers take into account the emotional needs and personal growth of employees and encourage the sharing of positive emotions Leadership practices that promote positive emotional climate associated with company gains in revenue, growth and outcome. Ozcelik et al, 2008

59 Steve Onyett Solution focused consultancy, coaching, facilitation and research Leadership as an ethical endeavour PEC associated with less cynicism and more engagement

60 Steve Onyett Solution focused consultancy, coaching, facilitation and research Research using the Team Leadership Questionnaire Showing genuine concern has the biggest impact on motivation. –Being interested in your needs and aspirations and how things feel for you. With acknowledgement to Bev Alimo-Metcalfe of

61 Steve Onyett Solution focused consultancy, coaching, facilitation and research New paradigm approach to leadership More soft stuff emphasis on working through others Leaders with more faith in other people than they have in themselves (and they have a lot of faith in themselves!) More concerned with connectedness and inclusiveness With acknowledgement to Bev Alimo-Metcalfe of

62 Steve Onyett Solution focused consultancy, coaching, facilitation and research New paradigm approach to leadership More concerned with vision More concerned with improvement Less concerned with Great man models of leadership Striving for excellence through optimism, openness and personal humility With acknowledgement to Bev Alimo-Metcalfe of

63 Steve Onyett Solution focused consultancy, coaching, facilitation and research Peter Drucker in conversation with David Cooperrider on Ai see Cooperrider (2003) Appreciative Inquiry Commons The task of leadership is to create an alignment of strengths…making a systems weaknesses irrelevant. --Peter Drucker From Global AI Conference Keynote by David Cooperrider. November 2009

64 Steve Onyett Solution focused consultancy, coaching, facilitation and research The importance of authenticity Leaders lead most effectively when they are being themselves and being true to themselves. Authentic leadership is about, being yourself- more – with skill Goffee and Jones, 2006

65 Steve Onyett Solution focused consultancy, coaching, facilitation and research Highlights from Host Leadership: Towards a new yet ancient metaphor by Mark McKergow PhD MBA Director, sfwork - The Centre for Solutions Focus at Work Forthcoming in the International Journal of Leadership in Public Services

66 Steve Onyett Solution focused consultancy, coaching, facilitation and research Shortcomings of the hero metaphor The hero leader is seen as all- knowing and the followers all- dependent; The illusion of control The homogeneous imagery of the followers - are we subjects or sheep! The willingness of the hero (warrior, king, even shepherd) to die in the act of saving the flock

67 Steve Onyett Solution focused consultancy, coaching, facilitation and research Shortcomings of the servant metaphor The richness of the metaphor is not obvious. Your waiter or Jeeves? The image of servant is not a compelling one to those (for example women and ethnic minorities) who are traditionally cast in such a role The leader as servant has similar hierarchical issues to the hero, but from the other end

68 Steve Onyett Solution focused consultancy, coaching, facilitation and research Leader as Host, Host as Leader Hero Host Servant

69 Steve Onyett Solution focused consultancy, coaching, facilitation and research Warren Bennis on Gladstone and Disraeli If you had dinner with William Gladstone, you were left thinking That Gladstone is the wittiest, the most intelligent, the most charming person around. But when you had dinner with Benjamin Disraeli, you were left thinking, Im the wittiest, the most intelligent, the most charming person around! Gladstone shone but Disraeli created an environment where others could shine. The latter is the more powerful form of leadership, an adventure in which the leader is privileged to find treasure within others and put it to good use. From introduction to Parks 2005 p xi-xii).

70 Steve Onyett Solution focused consultancy, coaching, facilitation and research Advantages of the host metaphor Its an everyday image Host and Guest are co-defining Hosting is an activity, rather than a defining characteristic of a person Hosting gives a definite feel of some responsibility for the success of the event The role of host can involve behaving as total hero or absolute servant

71 Steve Onyett Solution focused consultancy, coaching, facilitation and research Elements of host leadership The four balances + 1

72 Steve Onyett Solution focused consultancy, coaching, facilitation and research Principle of Response-ability Defining the event Responding to what happens

73 Steve Onyett Solution focused consultancy, coaching, facilitation and research Principle of Co-participation Engage and provide Join in along with everyone else

74 Steve Onyett Solution focused consultancy, coaching, facilitation and research Principle of Gate-opener Protect boundaries Encourage new connections

75 Steve Onyett Solution focused consultancy, coaching, facilitation and research Principle of Alpha and Omega Be the first Be the last The host is both the first and the last – Arabic proverb

76 Steve Onyett Solution focused consultancy, coaching, facilitation and research The 5 th principle? Front stage work. Back- stage work.

77 Steve Onyett Solution focused consultancy, coaching, facilitation and research Ask yourself Paul E. Plsek, 2008

78 Steve Onyett Solution focused consultancy, coaching, facilitation and research Wicked problems Involve issues with roots that are complex and entangled. Are difficult to get to grips with and change with every attempt to address them. Have no precedent So.. nothing to indicate the right answer Camillus, J. C Strategy as a wicked problem. Harvard Business Review

79 Steve Onyett Solution focused consultancy, coaching, facilitation and research Properties of Wicked problems There is no definitive formulation It is not obvious when you have reached a solution (no stopping rule) There is no immediate and no ultimate test of a solution- the solutions have their own consequences Every attempt at a solution counts significantly Camillus, J. C Strategy as a wicked problem. Harvard Business Review

80 Steve Onyett Solution focused consultancy, coaching, facilitation and research Properties of Wicked problems Each problem can be seen as a symptom of another problem Discrepancies can be explained in numerous ways- because people have different definitions of the problem You have no right to be wrong- there is too much at stake! Solutions are not true or false but good or bad- its all down to judgement …there is only better Camillus, J. C Strategy as a wicked problem. Harvard Business Review

81 Steve Onyett Solution focused consultancy, coaching, facilitation and research Are your issues wicked? Dont be surprised if they are – the easy problems have been solved! They involve many stakeholders with different values and priorities When confronting frustrating problems, an enterprise would do well to recognise that they may be wicked. Moving from denial to acceptance is important; otherwise companies will continue to use conventional processes and never effectively address their strategy issues Camillus, J. C Strategy as a wicked problem. Harvard Business Review

82 Steve Onyett Solution focused consultancy, coaching, facilitation and research Thank you!-


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