We deploy, adapt, and augment techniques such as World Café, Fishbowl, Dotmocracy, and Future Backwards. We also use approaches such as Kegan and Lahey’s ‘Competing Commitments’, Edward de Bono’s ideas on creativity, Dave Snowdon on complexity and sense-making, and Chris Argyris (Model 1 and Model 2 reasoning).
“With groups of 5 to 2000+ people — working in one-day workshops, three-day conferences, or the regular weekly staff meeting — the common result is a powerful, effective connecting and strengthening of what’s already happening in the organization: planning and action, learning and doing, passion and responsibility, participation and performance.”
“It is literally possible to accomplish in days and weeks what some other approaches take months and years to do”. Michael Herman
The techniques are effective in many situations, but they are particularly effective when:
- the work is complex
- there are multiple people and ideas involved
- the stakes are high
- time is tight
We use OS when our clients want to:
- Solve problems. It brings people together to understand a problem and seek a shared solution.
- Plan. It supports strategic and business planning, helping to identify goals and actions.
- Share and synthesise knowledge. People need to reflect on lessons and apply them to future work.
- Build communities, teams and networks. This is usually a secondary benefit, generated from working together in small and large groups.