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Change Management

Circle of influence, circle of concern – A tool

There are times when individuals or teams get overwhelmed by concerns about looming events – restructures, change initiatives, job insecurity. People may be feeling powerless and demoralised. This activity aims to help focus people on aspects of work over which they have some control. And defuse unproductive concerns. It can take 15–40 mins depending on the scale and intensity of the concerns. 1. Prepare a large flip
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Courage and Renewal

  At 9am on a Sunday morning, in front of a group of new acquaintances, I was shedding quiet tears. From a bluetoothed ipad, Cat Stevens sang ‘Morning has Broken’ as I regarded a carpet of tree collages on the floor of the meeting room – the product of a workshop exercise the previous day. Let me be clear. I don’t cry in public. I reserve that for movies, in private, about dogs doing something noble. What was I
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What makes great dialogue: conversations with depth and delight

Thinking about facilitation. I ran a session at Sydney Facilitators Network last month. The question was “What nurtures great dialogue?” We ran a ‘fish bowl’ role play with seven people conducting a dialogue, the rest of us paying close attention to the dynamics. The instruction to observers was to stay more alive to process than to the content. When the role play finished I asked for two observers to debrief each di
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I offended someone yesterday

“All life is meeting” Martin Buber I offended someone yesterday. After a workshop, a woman came and told me that I had embarrassed her in front of colleagues and subordinates. I apologized. She left quickly, still unhappy. She was also a senior officer in the organisation for which I was working. As I cleaned up the training room, I pondered whether to go back up in the lift to reception on the next floor, ask for he
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Solutions Focus

I stood and up and invited my colleague to walk out of the room. She looked surprised and a bit anxious, but complied. We were practicing a role play on solutions-focused coaching in a workshop run by UK consultants Paul Jackson and Janine Waldman. I was determined to shift things, break up the fussiness of the conversation, and happy to try something different. We walked in circles outside the training room. Then my
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Towards a Viable Australia

Early in March, I joined a three day workshop with an incredibly ambitious aim: “Creative Thinking Forum on Creating a Viable Australia”. The event drew some 60-70 people together from around Australia. I wondered if we were all crazy. Yet the process, ‘Design Shop’ created and facilitated by Matt Taylor and hosted at The Difference in Sydney was extraordinary and enlightening. Matt is an irrepressible 70 yr old, wit
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If you are stuck… do something, anything

Often our stuckness equates to procrastination. And at the heart of procrastination lies fear and inertia. So the answer can be simple: do something, do anything. Walk, run, dance, stand on your head, hang a picture; go to a museum, skating rink, climbing wall or a swimming pool. Why? Physical movement literally increases the amount of oxygen to your brain. As often as we ignore this fact, our mind and body are direc
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Be Human

Organisations are made up of people. Human, embodied, physical, spirited, flawed beings, who are often exhorted to be efficient (machines), professional (unfeeling), endorse corporate standards (don’t think for yourself) AND be innovative, responsive and forward looking. When you bring people fully into the workplace with all their passion you start to build the balance sheet on the innovation side. The way peo
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Catalysts for Capital

They came from Bega, Bombala, Pambula, Tathra, Cooma, Queanbeyan and Canberra. Eight workshops over eight months in six regional locations. Fourteen business and community leaders throughout the Capital Region of NSW and the ACT, celebrated the end of the Leaders 4 Capital regional development program in Canberra on Saturday 27 June. Sponsored by the Capital Regional Development Board and a range of local shires, the
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Small

Anyone who has ever worked in a large multinational or government bureaucracy may appreciate this quote from EF Schumacher: “The most striking thing about modern industry is that it requires so much and accomplishes so little. Modern industry seems to be inefficient to a degree that surpasses one’s ordinary powers of imagination. Its inefficiency therefore remains unnoticed.”
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