Reconceiving Change: From Solving Problems to Navigating Polarities

This is the third installment chronicling the insights that emerged from our work to develop our Leading from the Center Model.

Our third insight was that “Leaders are no longer faced with solving simple problems instead they must learn to navigate complex polarities.” Change is no longer something static that can be managed by unfreezing, reconfiguring and refreezing, instead change resides within the business ecosysetm and throws off unanticipated tradeoffs and tensions that must be attended to in an agile and thoughtful way. Learning to navigate the polarties thrown off by change is one of the most important things a leader must learn….which will require UNLEARNING the mindset that every challenge is a problem that can be solved through linear and sequential deductive logic.

What do you think….are you living and working  in a “Find-it-out” world where every problem you encounter is definable and has been solved in the past or are you increasingly operating in a “Figure-it-out” context where the issues you encounter are ones that are without precedent and require real-time sensemaking and ongoing attention? I know my world is laregely the latter!

Can Your Organization Avoid the VUCA Vortex

This is the second installment chronocling the insights that emerged from our work to develop our Leading from the Center Model.

Our second insight was that “Organizations are increasingly succeptible to the strengthening pull of the VUCA Vortex.” In fact, over the past 16 years, over 50% of the Fortune 500 have been pulled into the vortex and no longer exist. The new rule in this era of Digital Darwinism, it appears, is adapt or DIE!

What do you think? Is your organization immune to the VUCA vortex? If not, what are you doing to make sure it does not go the way of the dinosaur?

The Leadership Challenge: Developing Agility in Perpetuity

For the past six months, our Strategic Leadership Solutions team at DukeCE has been working tirelessly to distill our 16 years of collective experience working with over 250,000 leaders around the world to answer the question: How must leadership evolve to create organizations that are more responsive, resilient and agile?

Our journey of inquiry was aptly described by our team as being “herky jerky” and many of the unconventional insights that emerged from our collaborative sensemaking created a path that led us to our Leading from the Center Model.

At various stages of our journey we captured brief and unscripted video snippets of our new insights. We affectionately dubbed these “Scribbles from the Basement.”

Over the next few weeks I will be sharing these insights in chronological order so that you can share in our journey.

Our first insight was that “Leadership’s primary challenge is to understand how to develop agility in perpetuity.”  Take a look and let me know what you think. Is this the MOST important challenge for leadership today?

I’m Babaaaacccccckkkk

WOW,

I feel like I just popped through a wormhole. It is hard to believe that has been 1673 days since I last posted something here and, following a lot of chastizing from friends and colleagues in the learning field at Learning Technologies this year I have decided it is time to jump back into the discourse.

Don Taylor has been unrelenting in his perseverance to get me to come share some of my ideas on leadership, learning and technology at the conference over the past three years and I am so glad that he did.

In attending the conference this year and connecting with kindred spirits who have been on the learning journey for more years than we care to mention I felt once again right at home….Thank you Don Taylor for making me show up, Charles Jennings for sharing the wonderful work you are doing at 70-20-10 Institute, Harold Jarche for your ever insighful take on networks and learning and Nigel Paine for that incredible book you wrote on Building Leadership Development Programs…..I read it in one sitting on the way home from London.

It was truly wonderful to plug back into the community…. and it is good to be home ; )

Thanks also to the many of you who reached out asking for my charts. Many of you who know me know that I am a “Default to Open” kinda guy so, here they are available for free download from Slideshare.

The title of my talk was “What If…? Putting new Technologies to Work – The Challenge and the Opportunity.” My partners in crime were Steve Wheeler and Andrew Jacobs.

Looking forward to much more discussion and dialogue moving forward!