Maya's Favorite Change Methods

JazzLab: The Music of Synergy by Brian Tate
JazzLab is fascinating because it takes group participates and puts them into an environment in which teams participate, create and then act out a day in the life of a musician. It also gives them hands on experience with making music. The obvious is that it allows the individual to make harmonious sounds and think about how they listen and communicate. This method also looks at how to create effective teams and encourage immersion in an experience. It is based on the idea that everyone is musically inclined in some way. It also supports the idea that making music is a great metaphor or comparison for whole system thinking. Finally, it is an easy and effective way for teams to learn about their strengths and weakness and how to turn them into a successful collaboration.

JazzLab is interesting because like most people, I enjoy listening to music. I listen to it all the time, and it often reflects my current mood and the genre I’m listening to reflects the time of day. This method is also important to consider because music has been taken out of a lot of school programs when there is an obvious need and invaluable lesson that can be learned by making music. At the same time music has been shown to assist with memory for those suffering from dementia or Alzheimer’s disease. Clearly, music in our lives and in our environments, not only set the mood, but is also a powerful force in terms of collaboration and getting people talking and creating memories.

This an obvious fit with Kelley’s Collaborator persona as focuses on the team effort and is all about making sure an individual has confidence and extends themselves beyond their regular boundaries. It forces the teams to think and collaborate together to produce something that sounds good. Based on Roger’s innovation rankings, I believe early adopters would use this method. I would enjoy facilitating this in a workshop for a small group of university freshmen or for a corporate client who normally does less creative work.

Future Search: Common Ground under Complex Conditions by Marvin Weisbord and Sandra Janoff
Future Search focuses on three principles which are collaborating with a diverse group which has a full representation of the whole system, putting issues in a global context and looking at future trends and self managed group members who control their thoughts and actions. This method gets everyone in the room that matters and elicits different perspectives from each individual. There is a focus on true diversity of background and though. It is also noted that it works better with smaller groups. During the process, there is a search for common ground and a final vision is created. Group members also decide how to collect the final results and then they are given a few hours to create an action plan. Since this normally takes places in a conference setting the process continues on by implementing the final decisions afterwards.

This is interesting because it is inclusive, meant to get messy and creates a well thought out result. This one definitely fits my mission and underlying motive as a consultant. I want everyone in the room discussing, debating, making decisions and acting. Implementing this in the workplace might look something like including the janitorial staff, management, trainers, sales department, operations, and the design team to make a commitment on one common goal and improve their workplace.

This can definitely be identified in Rogers’s Persuasion in the five stages of adaption, as there will be a lot of knowledge seeking and convincing individuals that they need to be in the room together. They also have an opportunity to search for information, engage one another and create what they set out to do. In terms of Kelley, the Set Designer persona fits the bill because there will adjustments in physical space and an unnatural dynamic with people who don’t normally communicate on this level. This will have to be balanced. So, people will have to be versatile, both in mindset and in action, because their will so many different perspectives, personalities and attitudes.

Janice's Favorites
Idealized Design

The idealized design change method can be used to facilitate groups of up to fifty participants who are pursuing within a meeting time the creation of a fully-realized ideal. The fully realized ideal can be a product, system, process, or solution that fits the group’s vision for what is possible. Once the vision for what is possible is documented, the group works backwards to the current state of the product, process, system, or solution to determine the steps to get to the ideal. This method is known for producing breakthrough thinking that is transformative to the individuals involved and the object of attention.Idealized design meetings have participants imagine that everything they’ve known has been destroyed and challenges them to start from scratch to build their ideal. This eliminates the distraction of existing constraints and allows participants to think beyond the current state. The Idealized Design method elicits a phoenix rising from the ashes motif.

Open Space Technology

The Open Space Technology Method (OST) can be used with any size group, but works best with a group of diverse backgrounds gathering and presenting information on a specific, complex, and urgent theme. While the session employs the use of a facilitator, the agenda to be explored is completely determined by the group and established at the time of convening. The blank agenda is the unique characteristic of an open space meeting as is the completely hands-off quality of facilitation. The facilitator of an OST meeting does not direct conversation, but encourages it through the simple invitation to each member to introduce a topic related to the larger purpose of the gathering and post it with their name on the wall. Each member who posts a topic is responsible for showing up to hold a discussion of the topic at the appointed place and time.

The OST approach to collaboration validates that each member of a group has something to contribute. Additionally, it empowers knowledge sharing by eliminating hierarchy (presenter to audience or expert to novice) and provides a framework for letting go of insecurities and producing cross-pollinated innovation through four simple self-organizing principles:
  1. Whoever comes is the right people
  2. Whenever it starts is the right time
  3. Whatever happens is the only thing that could have
  4. Whenever it’s over it’s over

The Law of Two Feet is what provides the movement for cross-pollination of ideas to happen in the OST meeting space. The law states that each participant knows better than anyone when, where, and what he or she can best contribute to, which means that flitting between break out groups is highly encouraged. The only caveat is that when flitting between groups do not waste time, but move with purpose.

Katie's Favorites

Chapter 5: Appreciative Inquiry: A Positive Revolution in Change

Description:
Created in the early 1990s, Appreciative Inquiry (AI) is about positive transformational change within and organization. Instead of taking a problem solving approach to management, AI explores what works well through personal interviews and focuses on the vision of the organization. This approach uses a 4-D cycle which includes discovery, dream, design, and destiny.

Opinion:
I like this methodology because it has an investigative feel to it. In ways, I find this approach to align with Kelley and Roger’s definitions of the anthropologist. Appreciative inquiry is about asking questions, listening, and observing; it is not about top-down management and forcing change. In my job, we try to use student success stories as much as possible as ways to inspire others on campus. When you watch a student succeed, you are able to clearly see what you can help others accomplish which is extremely motivating.

Chapter 32: Dynamic Planning and the Power of Charrettes

Description:
This approach focuses on collaboration and compromise between external partners. A charrette happens during the Dynamic Planning process and is about experts working with the public to expose collective intelligence. Dynamic Planning incorporates a 3-phase process that incorporates; phase 1 = research, education, and charrette preparation; phase 2 = the charrette; phase 3 = plan implementation.

Opinion:
Before reading this method, I had never heard of the term charrette. Based on the description given, it makes sense that this approach would be highly efficient and adaptable. Collaboration makes everyone feel like a part of the decision, solution, idea, etc. Rogers talks about the notion of a change agent and that perception of that individual affects whether or not an idea will be adopted. With that in mind, it obviously is worth the time of the planners to get community buy-in.





Michelle's 2 Ways to Change
Practice of Empowerment: Changing Behavior and Developing Talent in Organizations
This practice attempts to focus direction on what isn’t working to what could make it better. The goal is a “process of enabling individuals to adopt new behaviors that further their individual aspirations and that of the organization” (p. 525).

What I like about this model is that it has a reflective component within the method. This component is geared more to the individual with some implications on how it would effect the organization. I feel there is great benefit in reflection and a willingness to try something different. As an educator for pre-service teachers, I am always looking for ways to improve my methods courses, change the vision of the course so that it continually meets the needs of students, reflects the constant changes in content material, and how our institutions articulates with K-12 institutions.

This type of changing behavior can be linked to Rogers’ (2003) Innovation-Decision Process, which an individual goes through five stages; knowledge, persuasion, decision, implementation, and confirmation. These five stages begin with looking at a “prior condition” (p. 171) and goes through five processes to come to a final conclusion on if the idea or innovation should stay or be discontinued.

Using this empowerment method shifts the "focus from what doesn't work to what can work motivates us to take action" (p. 526).

Conversation Café

This method allows individuals to drop-into a conversation about any particular topic without having a required commitment to attend on a regular basis. The structure of the conversation can be loosely or tightly structured, which is one of the main reasons why this method fits my personal leadership style. I like the ability to freely discuss problems, obstacles, or perhaps even to solve a problem(s). Within this informal setting, it allows participants to feel accepted and freely express themselves without consequences. In the video, Where Good Ideas Come From, Steve Johnson states, “a space [coffeehouse] where people would get together from different backgrounds, different fields of expertise, and share” allows for innovation to be freely discussed without ramifications or consequences.

I like this method because of the environment in which it is housed, a “coffeehouse”. It is the environment that sets the stage for how communication flows between leaders and members and a coffeehouse is a perfect location for communication to happen.

Within our workplace, our department is redesigning the elementary education program with a “dine and design” that meets in the University Center every two weeks over lunchtime. It is here that conversations are had on how to streamline the program to make it more connected across disciplines while making sure we are addressing the needs of the students. This setting has proved very effective. There is no obligation to attend, you may stay for as little or as long as you have time for, and it is always the same time and same location.


Ricardo's Two Methods


Playback Theatre is an improvisational theatre form that invites participants to tell their stories. The facilitators act these stories out.
How does it fit?
It says that it is good for “aerating.” I think my school can use some of this because we certainly need to clear the air with all the bad blood lately. It also fits in the classroom or in the whole school setting when there is an ending to something, or a celebration or the mourning of someone who has passed.
Why is it cool?
Any time you get up and act it is lots of fun. If you learn something about your organization then that’s even better.


Civic Engagement : Restoring Community through Empowering Conversations is a process to help ail an injured community. The engagement starts with an invitation to an event not an order. It is then more receptive and the participants may let down their guard some. They ask the participants powerful questions: ex. “What is your contribution to the problem you are complaining about?” There are six categories to the powerful questions: Connecting, Possibility, Ownership, Dissent, Commitment, Gifts. The question I used as an example came from the ownership category.


Why it fits?

It sounds like a powerful strategy that can be used in my community.

What makes it cool?

The depth of the questions makes it cool.


More on Civic Engagement




Saress's Favorite Change Methods from The Change Handbook:


Ancient Wisdom Council
I liked this method because of the depth of thought and reflection required. This method draws on ancient tribal traditions. Rather than Elders speaking for the people however, different teams are responsible for representing eight different perspectives. The teams put forth questions and then prioritize them. They then self-appoint leaders to carry out the new initiatives and solutions. I can see Kelley’s Anthropologist (2005)at work here as problems are viewed through several different lenses and this method delves into authentic experiences of the participants. I could see using this method in a school that is having difficulties moving forward because of conflict among faculty and administrative staff. This method digs to core of the participants and brings out what the true issues are as well as ways to use the innate knowledge of each member of the organization to move forward in agreement.

Conversation Café
Conversation Café is a great idea for exchanging ideas, thoughts and viewpoints with different people, even strangers. The rules are simple: keep an open mind, don’t judge others, listen rather than attack, try to see things in a new light, speak up about what you believe, and keep it short. These conversations can take place anywhere: a Starbucks or the board room of a corporation. The Collaborator (Kelley, 2005) would be welcome and comfortable here working to pull diverse groups together. I would love to participate in a Conversation Café right after a major conference like the DML conference in San Francisco. Wouldn’t it be great to sit down with total strangers who just experienced the same conference as you but from different perspectives? This method can be used by itself or as part of another, larger group experience. This small group effort could lead to Rogers’s (2003) stage of recognition of a need since it is exploratory in nature.


Jay's Magic 3Appreciative Inquiry
Appreciative inquiry is a powerful adaptable change method that focuses on discovering what "gives 'life' to an organization or community" (Cooperrider & Whitney, 2007, p. 75). It is a deductive type of inquiry that focuses not only on the superficial positives of an organization or community, but more importantly discovers what is known as "The Positive Core" (Cooperrider & Whitney, 2007, p. 75). This positive core includes resources that are immediately seen (superficial) and that are deep beneath the surface and have largely been left untapped as a result of the current organizational structure. The goal of appreciative inquiry is to expose and bring the positive core to the forefront of the organization, making it an "explicit property of all" (Cooperrider & Whitney, 2007, p.76).

In appreciative inquiry, the appreciative interview forms the heart and entry point to the inquiry method. The interview is designed to elicit stories and anecdotes connected with personal value and organizational value today and in an envisioned future. The appreciative inquiry process stands in contrast with general problem solving. General problem solving begins with the philosophy that organizations are problems that need solving, whereas appreciative inquiry sees organizations as a "mystery to be embraced" (Cooperrider & Whitney, 2007, p.76). As a result, the approach seems more positive and more encouraging of a conversation. It is this fundamental difference that allows the process to be rather "touchy-feely." I would imagine that such a method would be interesting for many who need a fresh release from stagnant organizational policy, however those individuals resistant to an organic and more personal inquiry process may not appreciate the method. Yet, in thinking about change, the approach invites people to connect in a way that seems beyond organizational structure and protocol. It may breathe life into an organization long after it has ceased being considered a "start up."


The World Cafe
Have you ever done the "Spokes Around a Wheel" activity? Participants form two circles, an inner circle and an outer circle. The inner circle faces the outer circle forming a conversational pair. A question is asked and the pair converses. Once time is called the outer circle rotates by one person to form another ad hoc conversational pair. This is one of my favorite conversational strategies in the classroom. It has the effect of generating ideas and building classroom culture. This method reminded me of this particular activity.

The World Cafe is simply a "conversational process, based on a set of integrated design principles" (Brown, Homer, & Isaacs, 2007, p. 180). This method leverages the power of dialogue to make visible a collective intelligence of a group and has its core the philosophy that "people already have within them the wisdom and creativity" (Brown, Homer, & Isaacs, 2007, p.181). The method works like this: A room is set up as a "Cafe" with chairs and tables, generally in groups of 4. Once groups are formed, a conversation begins based on questions such as: "What do we know about how organizations learn?" The authors recommend that these questions be appreciative in nature (see appreciative inquiry, above) rather than questions that would elicit a deficit perspective (Brown, Homer, & Isaacs, 2007).

Like appreciative inquiry, the World Cafe focuses on practical solutions rather than focus strictly on a system or individual blame perspective, as discussed by Rogers. The power behind this method is that action steps are directly determined rather than looming over complaints or discussing whom to blame.

In the initial conversation, people build upon each other's ideas, contributing to the small group generally creating a "new understanding" (Brown, Ken, & Isaacs, 2007, p.182). When adequate time has elapsed, the group rotates to another group. One member of the original group stays behind to share with others the collective understanding elicited by the former group. The other members disperse to form other groups at any of the other tables. In essence, they are ambassadors to other groups with other perspectives. This process can be done in 2 hours or may be stretched over several months.

I think the power of this method is the creation of a "living network pattern" of conversations that coevolve as each individual adds to the collective whole. The method is an easy way to generate a shared meaning in large organizations needing to engage all staff and stakeholders. Additionally, the power to create strong networks of people and information flow via serendipitous conversation is valuable since many organizations do not foster this kind of environment. The method is indeed an example of both Kelly's "Experience Architect" and "Set Designer" in that facilitators create a space that is hospitable and fosters good conversation (Kelley, 2005).

SimuReal
This adaptable method is "action learning in hyperdrive" (Perme & Klein, 2007). In this method, a room set-up simulates the real organizational structure of an organization. For example, if I were to do a SimuReal event of my department at work, I would place a chair in the center denoting our VP of IT with three circles of chairs surrounding this main chair. Each circle of chairs represents a department within the IT department. In the center of each circle, I would place another chair for the supervisors of each department.

The next component of SimuReal involves participants doing "real work," where they are provided with a real action task. In this simulation, the organizational structure works as in the real world to examine how they work together. After each action step, the group debriefs to analyze how the group tackled this problem via the organizational structure. As in all simulations, errors can be troubleshooted, actions can be rerun and rehashed with minimal to no risk involved. Again, the method bears similarities to Kelley's (2005) "Experimenter" in both the creation of prototypes and the ability to "Chunk Risk" (p.56.)


Edgar's Favorite Change Strategies


Improving Methods: Action Learning

The main processes of Action Learning are frequent cycles of reflection and action. As found by Holman et al. (2007), “developing the capacity to ‘earn as you go’ is key to organization success” (p. 480). Action learning is broken down into two types: peer coaching and team learning. Peer coaching allows for individuals of similar function areas to meet to reflect upon the things they are held accountable for. Team learning gathers a complete team within an organization to meet within a forum setting to reflect on a shared challenge.

Of all the methods, this is perhaps my favorite. As a teacher in the classroom, I am constantly implementing “metacognition” methods; for example, after each math homework or classroom assignment, students are required to reflect on the easiest/most difficult questions and explaining what they did/what they will do about it. I also include many opportunities for exit slips (to reflect upon a lesson that just occurred) and grade-your-own rubrics, where students reflect upon a project they just completed and justify a grade for themselves. However, I rarely have seen such techniques amongst the faculty.

Like mentioned in the Rapid Results section, our administration, along with the faculty and staff, frequently make many suggestions and implementation of school wide changes. Sadly, they are either not followed through, or given a measureable goal within a stated timeframe. In addition, when we do carry out these agreed-upon changes (e.g. discipline policy, uniform), we very rarely reflect upon it, or we do so when it is too late (i.e. the beginning of the next school year). I really liked the concept reflecting periodically during the implementation, meeting frequently and having “action between meetings.” Doing such an evaluation will actually show if we are meeting our goals, and makes for sustainable adoption.

I also really loved the idea of “peer coaching,” and meeting with similar leaders who do similar work. Because I teach at a small school, we really only have one teacher per course (e.g., we have only one Biology teacher, one Calculus teacher, etc.). While this can be seen as a positive, it also limits our teachers in regards to dealing with challenges in their course. For example, I am the only Calculus teacher at my high school; if I have difficulty teaching a topic, or if I have an amazing method to explain a concept, I have no one to share my frustrations and successes. I believe our school should partner with another small school and have their staffs “peer coach” each other. While I did it briefly in my Master’s program, I found peer coaching to be incredible in regards to exchange of resources for pedagogy. I firmly believe smaller schools should adopt a peer-coaching program with neighboring schools to integrate knowledge and bring a bigger perspective to their classrooms.

Improving Methods: Rapid Results
Nothing gets me more frustrated than banter about change and innovation rather than actually executing it. Rapid Results is a strategy that quickly stimulates actions, experimentation, and dramatic results (Holman et al., 2007). Rather than focus on discussions of change, this method defines timelines and deadlines for reaching tangible, measurable results. In one story shared by Holman et al (2007), a major insurance organization commissioned a team to deliver measureable results within 60 to 100 days as a result of poor performance the quarter before. This success story resulted in a strong performance in the next year.
Rapid Results is a four-phase process carried out by change leaders, project sponsors and facilitators. Each phase has a distinct goal with a relatively short time span: (1) to shape (2 weeks), (2) to launch (1 day), (3) to implement (30-100 days), and (4) to scale-up (30+ days). By breaking up large, difficult challenges into “achievable chunks,” many Rapid Results participants make significant strides towards reaching urgent, compelling objectives. This echoes Rogers’ (2003) statement that innovations divided into smaller pieces are generally adopted more rapidly.
Rather than implementing school wide, I think this method could be very effective in academic departments of a secondary school. I currently am the mathematics department chairperson at my school, and in my experience, we frequently start every academic year with lofty goals and expectations, only to see them fall by the wayside halfway through the year. What are lacking (and is cause for failure of adoption) are small, measurable goals and that can be attained in a short amount of time. For example, this year, I have encouraged my staff to incorporate the principles of a flipped classroom and standards-based learning. While I have been supportive by observing them, acting as a mentor, and providing lot of resources, I did not set measureable, attainable goals with a deadline. A better approach using the principles of Rapid Results would have been to create tangible goals and expect results within 1-2 months. Seeing the success stories from this strategy, I am excited to implement this with my math department next year.

Improving Methods: Action Learning
The main processes of Action Learning are frequent cycles of reflection and action. As found by Holman et al. (2007), “developing the capacity to ‘earn as you go’ is key to organization success” (p. 480). Action learning is broken down into two types: peer coaching and team learning. Peer coaching allows for individuals of similar function areas to meet to reflect upon the things they are held accountable for. Team learning gathers a complete team within an organization to meet within a forum setting to reflect on a shared challenge.
Of all the methods, this is perhaps my favorite. As a teacher in the classroom, I am constantly implementing “metacognition” methods; for example, after each math homework or classroom assignment, students are required to reflect on the easiest/most difficult questions and explaining what they did/what they will do about it. I also include many opportunities for exit slips (to reflect upon a lesson that just occurred) and grade-your-own rubrics, where students reflect upon a project they just completed and justify a grade for themselves. However, I rarely have seen such techniques amongst the faculty.
Like mentioned in the Rapid Results section, our administration, along with the faculty and staff, frequently make many suggestions and implementation of school wide changes. Sadly, they are either not followed through, or given a measureable goal within a stated timeframe. In addition, when we do carry out these agreed-upon changes (e.g. discipline policy, uniform), we very rarely reflect upon it, or we do so when it is too late (i.e. the beginning of the next school year). I really liked the concept reflecting periodically during the implementation, meeting frequently and having “action between meetings.” Doing such an evaluation will actually show if we are meeting our goals, and makes for sustainable adoption.
I also really loved the idea of “peer coaching,” and meeting with similar leaders who do similar work. Because I teach at a small school, we really only have one teacher per course (e.g., we have only one Biology teacher, one Calculus teacher, etc.). While this can be seen as a positive, it also limits our teachers in regards to dealing with challenges in their course. For example, I am the only Calculus teacher at my high school; if I have difficulty teaching a topic, or if I have an amazing method to explain a concept, I have no one to share my frustrations and successes. I believe our school should partner with another small school and have their staffs “peer coach” each other. While I did it briefly in my Master’s program, I found peer coaching to be incredible in regards to exchange of resources for pedagogy. I firmly believe smaller schools should adopt a peer-coaching program with neighboring schools to integrate knowledge and bring a bigger perspective to their classrooms.

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Change Facilitation Methods: An Nguyen

#5 - Appreciative Inquiry (AI)

Description. AI is an adaptable method that assumes everyone in the community has “untapped and rich accounts of the positive” (Kindle Locations 2309-2310). AI embodies the constructionist principle and approaches organizational reform not as problems to be solved, but mysteries to be discovered. At the core of AI is appreciating and valuing all that is positive in the community or organization. A basic assumption is that an organization is a positive story to be discovered and embraced. This method promotes a positive change through individual interviews and dialog between all stakeholders to discover the organization’s “positive core”. The open conversations ensure that participants have equal voice and high levels of participation and cooperation. According to Rogers (2003) recognizing, validating and honoring the voice of workers who are lower in the hierarchy can reap great rewards for the organization as often times, great ideas can come from these “innovation champions” (p. 146). Its 4-D design features: Discovery, Dream, Design, and Destiny, with the “affirmative topic choice” as the central focus. AI has been used to support large-scale reinventions of organizations such as mergers and acquisitions.

Special Features. AI is positive, not focused on solving problems, system-wide and collaborative. It involves all stakeholders and provides equal voice to all participants through storytelling.

Application. Members at a school site can pose “affirmative topics” relevant to the organization, such as defining and measuring success, motivation, parent involvement, and student engagement to be discussed in 20-minute group conferences.

Brief Description
Project Length
Activity
Number of People
Elementary School
Defining and Measuring Student Success across all levels in the district
10 months
-Train five implementation/ leadership teams, with 10 members per team.
-Hold two conferences, walk-thrus.
-Share “Magic Moments”, stories of courage, risk-taking, fearlessness, extraordinary success.
400 students
50 staff
300 families



# 6 - Collaborative Loops (CL)

Description. The key to this method is feedback loops and getting teams from different work groups to give input. The wider the mix in members, the more ideas, even contrarian ones, and the better for the collaboration. CL is based on premise that sub-systems and change do not happen in isolation. Having the opportunity to give feedback empowers people, and keeps them actively involved in the organization. CL promotes democracy by using the “wisdom of crowds” (Kindle Location 2776). CL is easy to implement and at its basic level CL provides people with some core ideas, simple guidelines, and tells people to “go for it.” (Kindle Locations 2777-2778).


This method acknowledges the staff’s skills and intelligence and gives them opportunity to actively design their work. This method provides built-in sustainability because people are invested in the plan. CL begins by holding workshop with different groups together, teams work together during workshop, learning about each other’s’ jobs, gaining ideas, sharing ideas to apply in their work, “With this process, the design is open and the principles are set.” (Kindle Location 2805). It is critical to keep in mind that while it is important to get stakeholder input, the leader needs to be aware of the “faster horse” syndrome and anticipate needs. Kelly and Littman (2006) related the story of how Henry Ford already knew what people needed without having to ask them; he knew they needed a car, but they wanted a faster horse.

Special Features. CL gets people involved in making the plan, and they involve themselves in implementing it. It is a method of engaging large groups collaboratively in planning and problem-solving. It puts an end to the “it’s not my job” syndrome because it gets provides more involvement and ownership. Also, in CL, teams know how they impact each other and are not isolated.

Application. Run articulation meetings between staff groups using the meeting canoe: welcome, connect, discover where we are, share dreams, decide who does what, and create a visual graphic of the school. Develop a truly student-centered approach by having students meet with older peers and teachers as experts to provide ZPD support while engaged in designing their own learning. Use for modernization planning, relocating to another school site.

Brief Description
Project Length
Activity
Number of People
Elementary School
-Articulation/communication between grade levels at school site and between different job groups (yard duty, custodial, office)
-Involve students in planning with staff teams. provide structure for students to design their own learning goals and curriculum
10 months
-provide structure for stakeholder groups to design their own goals for articulation
-provide structure for students and staff to design learning goals and curriculum
400 students
20 teachers

#9 - Open Space Technology (OST)

Description. OST develops a self-organizing community where there is order through chaos. It is based on four principles: Whoever comes are the right people; Whatever happens is the only thing that could; Whenever it starts is the right time; When it’s over, it’s over (Kindle Locations 3547-3548). In OST, organizations achieve sustainability by going with the flow. It begins by forming a large group in which anyone can step into the circle and suggest an issue they are passionate about and be in charge of leading a 20-minute discussion on that issue. Participants can walk away from the discussion anytime they lose interest and join another group. OST is a fun, dynamic, fast, cheap, and simple way to run better, more productive meetings. At a deeper level, OST groups are self-managing, leadership is just-in-time and shared, diversity is a strength, and members are empowered. Groups meet for 1-3 days, and at the end, issues are prioritized and an action plan is developed.

Special Features. OST only has three simple requirements: to have passion, to take responsibility and to form a circle. Because of its simplicity, there is no preparation, pre-planning or training involved in this method and the cost is minimal.

Application. Have two days of OST, involve students, parents and all staff and district admin and community members. With schools, we just can’t close shop. An idea is to invite parents to lead outdoor activities with some staff supervision and have rest of the staff engage in OST. Teachers union and district administration get together to work out issues such as layoffs, budget cuts, raising student achievement, etc., instead of resisting and contradicting one another. The risk factor is that things may be out of leader’s control. Have to be willing to let go and trust staff to do the right thing. You have to be able to trust people and believe that they are the experts. It is wise to establish group behavior norms which can be solicited from the participants.



Brief Description
Issues
Participants
Examples
Elementary School
-Use OST for school reform and improvements involving all stakeholder groups
-Improving student behavior management/discipline
-school modernization and relocation to new site
-Increase parent involvement
400 students
50 staff
300 families
-”close shop” by having parent volunteers cover classes doing outdoor activities, while teachers engage in OST

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Anna's Methods

Adaptable methods: Appreciative Inquiry
I thought AI was an interesting approach. Basically, when attempting to implement changes or improvements, it encourages the leadership to focus on the company’s strengths rather than weaknesses.
My experience with change when working at a brand new private university in Istanbul is a good example of why the traditional method of focusing on the problem didn’t work. Basically, the university faced a wide range of problems during its first year of existence: there were conflicts between staff and management about what the values of the university are, what the policies should be, and other issues. Initially, faculty and stuff were told that that the big decisions were going to be made democratically, but increasingly, the management was making decisions that were encountered by surprise and resistance from staff. Outside consultants were brought in, and they used the traditional Problem Solving approach of identifying the problem and analyzing the causes. The interviews were turned into horrible, negative venting sessions. Also, the interviews were done in groups, which meant that they weren’t really confidential. Then, quotes from interviews were distributed to the whole group, which resulted in further lack of confidentiality—it became a “big mess.”
Looking back, I can see how the AI approach could have been used to create a more positive atmosphere. For instance, we could start by taking a look at whatis working. There were some veteran instructors who were doing a great job, despite the problematic nature of the unmotivated students. I think because the university was so multicultural, and there were so many perspectives of what “might be” or “what should be,” it was hard to reach a consensus. I remember we did have a team-building workshop in which we tried to reach a consensus on how we envisioned the university to be in the future, but the problem was that our ideas remained on paper, on the posters we created as part of the workshop. In other words, upper management did not take a look and consider what the faculty wanted or envisioned, and continued to impose their vision of what might or should be. This led us, the faculty, to believe that management organized the workshops to give an illusion that our voices counted, but in reality, continued with its own agenda. This resulted in further lack of trust between management and employees. However, in the examples, in the book, it seems like the leadership really took a close look at the findings from the interviews and implemented change based on those findings.

Adaptable methods: Collaborative Loops
I really like the collaborative loops idea, because it “tap[s] into the wisdom of people in [the] system” (Holman, Devane, & Cady, 2007). As described in the example from the healthcare industry, when change is implemented without taking the voice of the employees who will be affected by the change into consideration, the members of the organization end up feeling “devalued” and “disengaged” (p. 91). In the example discussed above, because the university policies and rules were written without the active participation of faculty, they felt undervalued and disengaged.
I like the idea of people from various parts of the organization, and with various jobs, working together for a common goal. This way, voices and perspectives from all parts of the organization can be heard and taken into account when making decisions. As Rogers has pointed out, innovation can also have unforeseen effects, so having staff from different groups within the organization can help take into account the effects of the change on various groups within an organization.
I think having teams from different departments work together to create a change process to meet overall goals, such as higher patient satisfaction, is not only effective, but very empowering for the employees. The same model could be implemented in the field of education; however, as we have discussed in this and other classes through the semester, usually, changes in the field of education are implemented through the top-down approach, which is why they don’t work. I have always advocated giving more control and power to the teachers, rather than burdening them with state mandated requirements that interfere with or dictate what they do in class every day.

Planning methods: Dynamic Planning and the Power of Charrettes
In reading about how charrettes were used to implement the BART system, I was impressed by how democratic the process was. At first, the developers and city officials were not very concerned about the community’s concerns, but thanks to the community’s opposition, and determination to participate in the decision-making process, their concerns were addressed in the development of the final course of action.
As Rogers has described in many examples, often innovations are introduced into a community without the active participation of its members. Usually, innovations are introduced from the top down, either by corporations, government, or both, who do not consider the needs and well-being of the community. Ideally, it would be nice if members of communities got together, and thought about whether they want to allow a certain form of birth control, or a snow-mobile, or extensive pesticides, to be introduced into their communities or food chain.
I’m sure if more people participated in “dynamic planning” when changes or innovations are proposed, communities would be planned and build in a way that benefits not just the developers, or those bringing in innovations, but the people living in the community as well.

Celeste's Favorite Picks

Scenario Thinking (ST)
A lot of features about this change process is intriguing and feels right to me. First, the science person in me appreciates the decision-making algorithm to help sort out whether or not scenario thinking is a good idea for any given problem situation. There are some elements of Rogers’ (2003) notions of innovation present in the algorithm: the parameter of uncertainty is used to determine next steps early in the decision tree. Uncertainty motivates people to gather information, as it is an uncomfortable state. According to Rogers, the innovation-decision process is essentially an information seeking and processing activity motivated by the goal to reduce uncertainty. Change (i.e., an organization’s openness to it) is also a parameter for decision making further in the algorithm – this makes sense, as diffusion (of innovation) brings about social change.

The authors of the ST chapter initially refer to scenarios as “stories about how the future might unfold for our organizations…communities and even our world.” (p. 332). This made me think initially of the Kelley persona of the Storyteller. But after reading an elaboration on the real reasons for scenario thinking, which is to arrive at a deeper understanding of the world, to better inform thinking about the future, the persona of the Anthropologist seems a better fit. One who “can be extremely good at reframing a problem in a new way,” due to insights gained by observing, or getting direct experience within the environment of a problem might be best suited to sparking scenario thinking.

Finally, it helped me understand ST process far better when the authors made the distinctions between scenario thinking and strategic planning. They characterize the former as more fluid/dynamic in contrast to the static/linear nature of the latter; thus, a plan can become obsolete. It is not a stretch to liken this to how I approach giving anesthesia care. An anesthetic plan is good to have – it has guidelines or parameters for certain interventions (drugs, fluids, other actions), but the safest way to approach care is to have the framework of an established plan but continuously going over potential scenarios in ones head in order to make decisions on actions to take from moment to moment: “what could happen if …”, “what would happen if I do not….” This process makes sense and makes for good outcomes.

Community Weaving (CW)
Having my mind infused with social learning theories in this semester’s EDLT 770B course, under the tutelage of Dr. Kledzik, how could I not select CW as a change process that makes sense and has the potential to be successful in today’s participatory culture? After I read through the description of the CW process the first few times, the notes in the margin of my book indicated links to Lave & Wenger and Situative Learning/Communities of Practice e.g., “Master Weavers” who share stories and teach others how to use tools (p. 401), the importance of the contextual culture of the community (p. 414) to name only two. The truth is, the theoretical base of CW is a mashup (or rather a weaving – hah!) of several learning theories - Social Network, Social Capital, Learning Communities, Experiential - as well as other change methods covered in the Change Handbook. (p. 414-415, table.) What I think is cool about this seemingly loose, warm and fuzzy process (the grass roots community piece) is the addition of the latest web-based technologies (an essential component of the CW process and how a community gets started, expanded and maintained) and partnering with an established organization. The latter gives the partnership a solid, established core, some street cred. What an ingenious model!

I can envision applying this process to a community effort to impact the entry of under-represented minorities into healthcare fields, with emphasis on building a network (teachers, parents, administrators, members of the healthcare team, near peers) to support/mentor K-12 students from kindergarten through admission to a graduate level professional school. Our simulation center already works with a number of small-scale community outreach groups with this focus (mentoring young students), and can envision growing the size and scope of the community. Our university (Samuel Merritt) along with the fiscal muscle of our affiliated healthcare system (Sutter Health) would stand as the established organization, providing best in class technology support.

Another appealing component to the Community Weave process is the train-the-trainer (TTT) model they endorse for establishing a sizable Family Advocate group, deemed to be the change agents (that’s Rogers speak there) of this particular process. We use the TTT model for the development of simulation educators – it’s a style of teaching/learning that I believe is necessary for diffusing innovation/redesign and one for which my colleagues and I have a strong track record.

Andy's Favorites

Real Time Strategic Change
Think of this as the startup model (even if it is being applied to established communities.) This is a method for RAPID change which should yield a sustained result and not just an impulse and then a return to the status quo. There is no limit to the size of community which can be effective in employing this method. It must include every member of the community to stand the best chance of successful change over time. This can be a measured approach over time but is often quickly implemented after conception. This method may allow organizations to be extremely flexible and adaptable but does not address environments where core issues are at stake. For example, if the organization generally agrees on the driving principles then this type of rapid change is a good fit, but if a significant portion of the membership believe that it is time for a fundamental shift in driving philosophy then this method is not appropriate as those core issue differences will fracture and defeat the changes.

I like his one because it resonates with me and my childhood desire to be a successful entrepreneur. When I read this one I thought of how much this reminds me of the way my brother's company (the one he works for) does business. They are all so locked into the believe that their product can and is used for good that that they are willing to do almost anything to see the company get ahead and continue to grow. These are the work 90 hours a week with a smile type of people and I am jealous of the success they have had in implementing real time strategic change. If the company's need change, the entire community changes direction like a school of fish avoiding predation. In a Kelley PoV the entire company is full of hurdlers; It is really cool

Search Conference
Is a method to establish actionable plans for long term permanent change in an organization. It has a narrow participation scope of 20-35 people to be effective. Too few and there is not enough cross-sectional influence. Too large and the waters get muddy fast. The group must include all of the knowledge domains required to affect the changes sought effectively. The actual event takes 1 to 18 months to plan and only two days and nights to accomplish whatever will be accomplished in the conference. This Method is only used to establish a means for an already known goal or end game.

I picked this one because it resonates with my daily life. In higher ed we are constantly under the gun for accreditation. We already know the goal but we do not always know how we are getting there. That is exactly why we employ this method every 3 years or so to make sure our strategies will reach our goals. In this case, will our accreditation schema hold up for another round or do we need to tweak or completely redesign the system?

Angie's Favorites

Open Space Technology
Open Space Technology is unique because it does not incorporate a set agenda and there is no extensive planning necessary to conduct this method. The meeting attendees are responsible for selecting what they would like to discuss. Members sign up to present or lead the conversation on the first day of the meeting. The facilitator is responsible for finding a venue and bringing the group together, they are given a minimal amount of time (approximately 20 minutes) to make an introduction and describe the process. After this initial announcement the facilitator is expected to not intervene in the group process. Essentially, the control is handed over to the group.

I was drawn to this method because I have seen it used recently in education and I would like to see it used more in the future. There is a current unconference movement among educators, most specifically in the Edcamps that are spreading across the country. These camps completely follow this method, except for the necessity of sitting in a circle. Anyone with the passion and drive for the subject can set one of these camps up, they find the venue, set up registration, and spread the word. When attendees arrive they are introduced to the concept and then are given the ability to sign up to host a session, they have complete freedom over what they choose to share. Those that are presenting are free to attend any session they choose. Just as stated in the Open Space description on page 141 attendees should use the “Law of Two Feet” to walk away if the session isn’t something they can contribute or learn from (Owen, 2007).

Visual Recording and Graphic Facilitation: Helping People See What They Mean
Visual recording and graphic facilitation use real time illustrations to more effectively communicate an issue. It is a growing method that gets its roots from the way designers do their work. A few examples of how this method has been used by growing organization include activities such as retreats, problem solving, strategic thinking, and knowledge creation. Overall the method is used to deepen members learning or understanding. Graphically portraying the content adds to subject and helps people to further grasp the concepts as well as to more easily identify issues. This is an exciting method because it is relatively new and offers positive outcomes such as increased engagement, big-picture thinking, and increased memory (Marqulies and Sibbett, 2007). The method is also supported by literature that emphasizes the importance of visualizing and thinking.

Visual Recording was used for the Cyberlearning summit and can be seen in RSA Animate videos. The animations help to accentuate the message being portrayed in both of these examples. I think this would be a great method to use in my classroom. Instead of simply writing about a topic, I could have my students work together to develop a visual recording of what they have learned. Of course this wouldn’t be quite the same as if we were to really learn how to conduct graphic recording, but it could still add to my students understanding as well as help to support those that are visual learners. I can easily see how this method could improve my students’ overall understanding of the concept and it would help me see what they know as well as possible misconceptions.

Malia's Favs

Adaptable Methods - Appreciative Inquiry
Being the optimist that I am, I thought that Appreciative Inquiry was a good method to use because it focusses the parts that are working and successful. In the Ed Tech Program, we have a lot of pieces that are successful that can be developed. Working from Problem Solving to Appreciative Inquiry is an important transition to make when trying to be innovative rather than problem solving oriented (Holman, et al., 2007). The Problem Solving approach would first identify the problem as declining enrollment. The Analysis of the Cause would be the freeze in the pay scales and the lack of compensation for continuing education. Analysis and Possible Solutions could be potentially lowering tuition, branching outside of the state in the online sector, or providing other incentives. Finally, the Action Planning (Treatment) would be working with the registrar to see if they can work out lower tuition for teachers, increase outside of the state marketing for our program, or provide a brainstorming session for other incentives. This method seems to create a temporary fix for a potentially long term problem (Holman, et al., 2007).


Rapid Results

I chose to use the Rapid Results approach as the improvement method outlined by Holman, Devane, Cady, & Associates (2007) to solve our declining enrollment crisis. Our transformational challenge is to to increase enrollment in the Educational Technology Master’s Program around the state. Our goal is to create five new cohorts, one in each of the following areas, Appleton, La Crosse, Milwaukee, Madison, and Eau Claire. Taking one week out of the summer and focussing on each area simultaneously will be our short-term time horizon (Holman, et al., 2007). Enrolling six or more students creates a new cohort. The planning will be done by the Educational Technology team of five teachers and their strongest adjuncts. The team will collaborate daily on the progress and assess the learning. At the culmination of the process the team will reconvene and discuss the next steps for the next round, whether that takes place in the Fall or again in the Summer. Depending on results, the next time around can scale up to seven groups, moving toward Door County and Tomahawk or Rhinelander areas.

Kevin's Pick's
Whole Scale Change (from Adaptable Methods)
The Star of Success

Whole Scale change appeals to me because of how similar its principles are to Buddhism. When I saw the Star of Success systems model, I immediately related it to the life philosophy I strive for: right view, right intention, right speech, right action, right livelihood, right effort, right mindfulness, right concentration. These are the according to the system of Buddhist ethics called the eightfold path. With this approach, the group must start with “true north,” to ensure the strategic direction is right. In Whole Scale change, the alignment of purpose, desired outcomes and approach for change is conducive for bringing together the hearts and minds of the participants. Imagine creating an “in the moment” culture? After all, the present is the only time we ever have!

Seven models are in play with Whole Scale change. This is an important aspect of the stages of diffusion (Rogers, 2003) and consistent with Generalization 5-12: Stages Exist in the Innovation-Decision Process. I really like number or stage 6: Data-Purpose-Plan-Evaluate. It is similar to the Plan-Act-Change-Evaluate (PACE) model used at many Sutter Health hospitals. The front line workers represent a wealth of knowledge and ideas about process improvement and with PACE are given authority to put those ideas into motion. It is truly a team effort with total buy-in and ownership by the group for the success of the process, not necessarily the idea. If the idea doesn’t achieve the desired outcome, the team must be able to own up to that as well. In the Sutter Health system (and I am NOT a big fan, even though it is Samuel Merritt University’s ultimate parent corporation), the successful PACE-generated ideas are shared throughout the system so they may be picked up by local PACE teams if they so choose. The best part of PACE is that the authority is vested in all of the worker members, even if the idea comes from the housekeeper, the nurses aide, or the mail room clerk.

Consensus Decision Making (from Planning Methods)
When I reviewed the list of methods in the table of contents, I knew the Consensus Decision Making model would be one I select. I was familiar with it as an active member of the Green Party (GP). I was elected to the Alameda County council of the GP for two terms during the 1990s. So when I began reading about the method, it was no surprise to read the story about how the GP began in the United States. I think of it as a modified Robert’s Rules of Order for running meetings. The big difference is that the majority doesn’t rule. Everybody gets heard, but there is no politicking behind the scenes to line up votes and have two or more “sides” competing for votes. An important aspect to consensus decision making is that the group be committed to a set of principles. For the Greens, those principles are the Ten Key Values that guide the organization.

This is not an easy process. In fact, it can really wear you down. In my local group, we have had one (or two) members that consistently “blocked” consensus and mired the group down. This was an inappropriate use of blocking. It is similar to Robert’s Rule objecting to consideration of the motion, a priority motion. It is a rarely used motion (I used it once at a nursing convention) to prevent a group from even discussing a proposal. You have to envision a major wrong happening to the group as a result of taking the action. It has to go against principles. With consensus, the group tries to address all concerns and resolve them. Blocking should be rare, but in reality, it can be abused.
The main strengths of consensus decision making is that it honors all participants and does not reduce the process to a sporting event, rewarding the biggest, strongest, most good-looking or loudest participants. This represents the ideal approach I would select for redesigning the curriculum for the baccalaureate program at Samuel Merritt University. We could really identify the blocking that has prevented any resolution of the issues and problems related to the current curriculum. Once identified, we would be able to proceed in a manner respectful of all participants and the diversity of opinions present.



John’s Favorites

Adaptable Methods
Open Space Technology
There are four main principles of Open Space Technology. The first is that “Whoever comes are the right people”, the second “Whatever happens is the only thing that could have”, the third “Whenever it starts is the right time”, and finally the fourth “When it’s over, it’s over” (Holman, Devane, & Cady, 2007, Kindle Location 3633). It was originally created in 1985 by Harrison Owen, but with help from over a thousand others spanning four continents. At the heart is the desire for individuals to take responsibility for their part in the solution. The number of people best fitted for Open Space are anywhere from five up to an undetermined theoretical cap. This method works best when there are no predetermined results desired which is crucial in order for innovation to occur. It is when preconceived ideas of what the results should look like and are then rigidly adhered to, that stagnation inevitably happens within an organization. Roger’s (2003) example of the Ampex company’s workers suggesting to management that they should expand their VCR product market to include personal home versions fits well here. If management had not held to its preconceived ideas of who would benefit from VCR technologies, the company would have flourished as demonstrated by Sony who bought the rights from them.

I personally find the first principle the most significant as it relates to some of my committee duties within the university where I am employed. When working on committees, there are always those members that find an excuse not to be present much of the time. Whether that is missing entire meetings or only partially paying attention during one. Those that are passionate about the topic are easily identified within the group. Those are the obvious “right people” to have in order for innovation to occur or at least tasks to be accomplished. Owen’s statement that “Even a group of one works” is powerful (Holman et al., 2007, Kindle Location 3226). The founding president of our university is an example of this. Faced with years of continuous rejection, his passion and perseverance finally convinced the governing body of our church, the Lutheran Church Missouri Synod, to allow him to pursue opening our university. The few passionate people that were part of this planning and implementation were definitely the “right people.” His stubbornness was akin to Kelley’s (2006) Hurdler. Many experts believed that another college on the West coast was not viable, but in true Hurdler fashion, after listening to what they had to say, he ignored them and today we serve over 3,500 students.

Supportive Methods
Online Environments
This supportive method has become a very common tool in education, business, and our personal lives. Online environments include anything that allows people to share information electronically including email, instant messaging, blogs, file sharing, interactive website, and many others; the list continues to evolve as new technologies are developed at a rapid pace. These environments provide a vehicle for speeding up change. They can “identify, connect, and engage diverse groups of people and information, creating the possibility of a new kind of collective action. They bridge time and distance, providing opportunities to discover useful questions, answers, and perspectives. Conversations emerge and stories are told. They offer transparency of both process and content, creating a record for reflection, study, and action” (Holman et al., 2007, Kindle Location 10097).

Online Environments can help support various events in many ways including planning and preparation, registration and logistics, relationship formation, information dissemination, distributed participation, creating artifacts, and extend change beyond the original event. The process of change is usually a slow one. These Online Environments can support this process by providing the ability to inexpensively collect information, share files, and display schedules. It also provides ongoing communication capabilities among a large group or any number of subgroups that can be created which can be seen by any of the other group members. This type of environment allows organizations to make connections with others on the outside and share in a collective effort to accomplish similar goals.

This type of Online Environment provides a tool to support different methodologies. It is important for those with expertise in methodologies to seek out those who have expertise with the technology side of these Online Environments in order to take full advantage of their capabilities. This type of environment can provide an opportunity to build relationships through online interactions and access to directories. It can promote knowledge building through access to others and create a group memory. With many-to-many access to people and information, the Online Environment reduces the need for an extensive group hierarchy. The ability to work out various anxieties online can enhance the quality of a subsequent face-to-face meeting. Any energy and momentum created in a face-to-face meeting can then also potentially be transferred into an Online Environment.

One of the biggest parts of my job is developing ways to utilize Blackboard, the learning management system for our university. This Online Environment has been the source of many great contributions to our learning environment for both students and our employees; it has also been a tremendous problem at times. Concordia offers several online and hybrid programs which utilize the learning management system heavily. The courses in these programs exemplify many of the items discussed in this section. At the most basic level of implementation, Blackboard provides a “content dump” area for documents for those professors who teach in the traditional face-to-face environment and want to use it as a supplement to their course.

The hybrid and online programs utilize many more of the online tools in the learning management system. A couple of the most powerful tools are the discussion boards and virtual classrooms; these provide an extremely efficient method of communication. The virtual classroom allows an instructor and students to communicate in real time, share a common whiteboard, files, and links. The discussion boards provide a place to communicate asynchronously while helping to build a shared knowledge and memory space.
Concordia is moving even more of its assessment processes over to an Online Environment. With Blackboard Outcomes, artifacts can be collected and displayed for transparency purposes for both internal evaluators and for outside accreditation bodies. Concordia is at different stages of Roger’s (2003) diffusion process of Blackboard depending on which group of users are interviewed. Some don’t see a need for it at all, while others are developing ways to incorporate at least some aspects, and finally the university as a whole is dealing with some of the consequences of the institutional level Blackboard survey system that has been in use for a year now.

John's References
Kelley, T. (2005). The ten faces of innovation. New York, NY: Doubleday.
Holman, Peggy (2007-01-04). The Change Handbook: The Definitive Resource on Today's Best Methods for Engaging Whole Systems. Berrett-Koehler Publishers - A. Kindle Edition.
Rogers, E. M. (2003). Diffusion of innovations (Fifth edition ed.). New York, NY: Free Press.


Jeff's Favorites

Adaptable Methods
Technology of Participation

The Technology of Participation (ToP) enables groups to engage in thoughtful and productive conversations, develop common ground for working together and build effective short- and long-range plans. When people first encounter a problem in ToP they brainstorm ideas, gathering as much information as possible on how to solve the problem. These ideas are then clustered into groups based on similar content, so ideas that involved some type of online discussion board would be in one group and ideas on customer surveys would be in another group. Then a facilitator is put in charge of each idea group and people discuss how the ideas could be used to solve the problem at hand. Finally, when the groups come back together they reflect on their findings and discuss a final solution. Oyler and Harper (2007) stated success requires inclusive participation, teamwork and collaboration, individual and group creativity, action and ownership, reflection and learning.

I see many of Kelley’s faces of innovation in ToP, from Design conference (anthropologist) as part of the discovery process, Experimental Aim (Experimenter), and the facilitator (cross-pollinator), someone to assume that everyone is a source of ideas, skills, and wisdom and every bit is needed (Kelley, 2005). These roles are for innovative people, people willing to make change happen. Oyler and Harper (2007) mentioned that ToP methods are inappropriate for situations where leadership has no desire for people to have a real voice in decision-making. People who wish to keep groups in their silos without inter-department contact or discussion, an innovation killer.

Leadership Dojo

The Leadership Dojo is aimed at changing the culture of a company mind, body and spirit and making everyone leaders. People learn a common language for building trust, listening respectfully, generating positive moods, creating a shared vision, managing and fulfilling commitments, having conversations for action, and being lifelong learners. Strozzi-Heckler (2007) uses the example of grabbing someone’s wrist as a physical act to show the disruption in an organization. A person’s natural response is to react reflexively, pull away or get angry but in the Leadership Dojo people are taught to blend with the change, move and innovate with the change instead of reacting in a reflexive manner. When companies merge pride can be hurt and people become defensive about “their turf”. In the Leadership Dojo people learn to take new actions that include the body as well as the mind, this leads to greater creativity and productivity (Strozzi-Heckler, 2007). Allowing people to bring their purpose, what they care about into their professional life, develops an atmosphere where creative and innovative ideas can grow or begin.

Kelley's (2005) caregiver role can be seen in the Leadership Dojo. Kelley (2005) stated caregivers take extra pains to understand each individual customer. Rogers (2003) stated the diffusion of innovations is a social process, even more than a technical matter. Being more involved, caring about the communities we live and work in helps to develop new ideas and spread those ideas through our soical contact; people who we know can be change agents and trust us.
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Jill's Picks==

Playback theater


I am intrigued by the Playback Theater method as it may first seems to be, in colloquial terms, too fluffy or touchy-feely for educational and professional use. However, from the Change Handbook description and testimonials, I can see using this approach in a specific area of my professional practice.

Playback Theater is an interactive setting where audience member’s stories are acted out by performers as they tell them. The audience members are typically part of the same organization, and the performers and conductor are visitors to the setting. The conductor asks probing questions and has the ability to start and stop the show. Some benefits of this method are: building cohesion, empathy and understanding, providing a public forum for conflict, grieving and celebration, and getting a group to address issues and possibilities with change.

In my practice, I would like to use this method with teachers who are in collaborative or co-teaching partnerships. Joining forces, and sharing space and work for a common purpose is a difficult process that usually works its way through Tuckman's stages of team development. In addition, co-teachers must understand each others’ roles, skills and perspectives in order to be productive together. Playback Theater may be a method to support that process as it can open eyes to each other’s stories and strengthen the trust of the working partnership.

Open Space Technology


I appreciate the potential of Open Space Technology as it Much like described in Kelly’s Collaborator chapter, the format of Open Space Technology allows participants to come together on common ground, with a partially or completely blank slate for communication innovation or creativity. The concept has been increasing adapted to educational conferences in the past few years, perhaps most widely known in the form of Edcamps or ‘unconferences’.


I have used OST in designing the breakout sessions for an educational conference in Minnesota. Similar to the model used at the Learning 2.0 conferences in China, we combined pre-planned cohort sessions with ‘unconference’ options every few hours. We posted signup sheets along the wall. Anyone may a session or educational conversation they would like to lead, or would like someone else to lead. Participants added their tally votes, and the top choices each hour were assigned rooms. I especially like this format as the focus is not on polishing the best presentation, but on the joint work of people who have a like purpose or goal. In my opinion, there is freedom in knowing that the sessions were spontaneously created and the participants were willing to take a risk. I believe when the ownership of the learning is shared, the potential for great results is higher.


Open Space Technology is a format I would like to see adapted more often in educational settings beyond conferences, such as school meetings and professional development. As school leaders and consultants, we need to be open to letting go of the organizational control and use our positions to create open space, participant-driven professional learning environments.




References: Saress, Celeste

Holman, P., Devane, T., & Cady, S. (2007). The change handbook. San Francisco, CA: Berret-Koehler Publishers, Inc.

Kelley, T. (with Littman, J.).(2005). The ten faces of innovation: IDEO’s strategy for beating the devil’s advocate and driving creativity throughout your organization. New York, NY: Double Day.

Rogers, E. M. (2003). Diffusion of innovations (5th ed.). New York, NY: Free Press.

References: Jay

Brown, J., Homer, K., & Isaacs, D. (2007). The world cafe. In P. Holman, T. Devane, & S. Cady (Eds.), The change handbook: The definitive resource on today’s best methods for engaging whole systems (2 ed., pp. 179-194). San Francisco, CA: Berrett-Koehler Publishers, Inc.

Cooperrider, D. L., & Whitney, D. (2007). Appreciative inquiry: a positive revolution in change. In P. Holman, T. Devane, & S. Cady (Eds.), The change handbook: The definitive resource on today’s best methods for engaging whole systems (2 ed., pp. 73-88). San Francisco, CA: Berrett-Koehler Publishers, Inc.

Kelley, T. (2005). The ten faces of innovation: IDEO’s strategies for beating the devil’s advocate & driving creativity throughout your organization. New York, NY: Currency Doubleday.

Perm, C., & Klein, A. (2007). SimuReal: Action learning in hyperdrive. In P. Holman, T. Devane, & S. Cady (Eds.), The change handbook: The definitive resource on today’s best methods for engaging whole systems (2 ed., pp. 278-282). San Francisco, CA: Berrett-Koehler Publishers, Inc.

Rogers, E. M. (2003). Diffusion of innovations (5 ed.). New York, NY: Free Press

References: An

Holman, P. (2007-01-04). The Change Handbook: The Definitive Resource on Today's Best Methods for Engaging Whole Systems. Berrett Koehler. Kindle Edition.
Littman, J., Kelley, T. (2006-02-14). The Ten Faces of Innovation: IDEO's Strategies for
Defeating the Devil's Advocate and Driving Creativity Throughout Your Organization. Random House, Inc.. Kindle Edition.
Rogers, E. M. (2003-08-05). Diffusion of Innovations, 5th Edition. Simon & Schuster, Inc. Kindle Edition.

References: Ricardo


Holman, P., Devane, T., & Cady, S. (2007). The change handbook. San Francisco, CA: Berret-Koehler Publishers, Inc.


References: Michelle

Holman, P., Devane, T., & Cady, S. (2007). The change handbook: The definitive resource on today’s best methods for engaging whole systems. San Francisco, CA: Berrett-Koehler.
Kelley, T. (2005). The ten faces of innovation. New York, NY: Random House.
Rogers, E. M. (2003). Diffusion of innovations (5th ed). New York, NY: Free Press.
TedTalks (Producer). (2005, July). Charles Leadbeater on innovation. [Video webcast] [TedTalks series episode]. Retrieved from http://www.ted.com/talks/lang/en/charles_leadbeater_on_innovation.html.

References: Angie

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