|Testimonial Story (from Patti Seymore)|
Testimonial Story (from Patti Seymore)
We then had four of us tell "our” stories about how we found ourselves at this place and why it is so important to become a learning organization. We talked briefly about The 5th Discipline. We also shared some other books we have read together. We then broke into small groups of 4 to discuss the question, "if you could improve performance in one area that would make a significant difference to the company, what would that be?” The discussion that followed was truly amazing. We encouraged people to sit with someone that they don’t usually associate with - in a small company we know each other pretty well, but we still seem to hang with the same people no matter what. So we ended up with the CFO talking with the administrative assistant and the COO talking with the IT Manager. We had some great results. I think it was surprising to the participants that the discussion was so open.
We then introduced journaling to the group explaining the importance of slowing ourselves down long enough to identify the real questions behind the issues we face. And that our personal journeys are of equal importance. We saw individuals filling page after page with their thoughts, dreams, ideas, etc. Since June I have sent a journal question out to the group – about once every other week. They are very appreciative of the questions and the way we are trying to "keep it alive”.
At the end of the day we went around the room asking everyone to give two words that described their feelings from the day. The words used most often were: energized, encouraged, focused and determined. It was a great day. We then invited leaders to the next meeting. We would not require anyone to attend who did not see any benefit to this type of session. We may not have all our leaders attending, but we will have those who want to take themselves to the next level – or at least see what it looks like.
We contacted SoL's Managing Director, Frank Schneider, after this meeting and talked through a few ideas for our next steps. It seemed to make sense that we need to introduce system archetypes and mental models, perhaps using the ladder of inference and the left-hand column exercises in a one-day in-house workshop. We thought about doing the "beer game” but think that may come later. Our intent was to continue to provide a safe environment for participants to share their thoughts, ideas and to ask the questions that need to be asked to keep our credit union moving in the right direction.
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4/11/2017 » 4/13/2017
Foundations for Leadership with Peter Senge and Robert Hanig, April 2017
6/20/2017 » 6/22/2017
Leading & Learning for Sustainability with Peter Senge and Darcy Winslow June 2017