21/04, 12/05, and 02/06/2023 – Deep Dive – 9-17u CET

DC Academy – Beyond hierarchy and self-organization: develop collaborative intelligence

Since Reinventing Organisations, self-management has remained in the spotlight.

However, the search for other ways of organized collaboration is not new. In 1927, Mary Parker Follet was one of the first advocates of what she defined as democratic leadership. She noticed that in many collaborations where Smith and Brown worked together in a reporting relationship, Smith was in charge of some parts of a task and Brown of others. In her view, no organized collaboration is based on equality or arbitrary authority but instead on what she calls functional unity.

Understanding collaboration requires delving into how collaborative relationships unfold. Good collaborations develop when they are based on value creation. This forms the core of functional unity.

Since Mary Parker Follet, self-management has become the focus of shareholders with waves and has been introduced with varying degrees of success. Even the best practices in the current dominant approaches (Holocracy, Sociocracy, Deep Democracy, Semco, Liquid O, Unboss, Agile, …) do not guarantee success. 9 out of 10 transitions to self-management fall back on forms of hierarchical collaboration after two years.

Why is this, and how can you prevent it?

The program ‘Beyond Hierarchy and Self-organisation: Develop Collaborative Intelligence’ discusses the working mechanisms in different self-management approaches. Using case studies, we clarify how you can strengthen the transition to self-management and arrive at true collaborative thinking. In particular, we work around establishing a dialogue through which effective mindset transitions take shape.

This program invites you to look at team and project work facilitation completely differently. We make you aware of two hitherto underexposed team dynamics linked to the way differences in perspective intake are dealt with, namely, those related to narrowing the team assignment too much (causing deadlines to be missed, budgets to be exceeded, and undesirable things to be reworked) or opening up team assignments too much (creating areas of tension with flanking teams, creating risks of burn-out and unexpectedly challenging systems and processes).

In particular, we zoom in on giving and receiving contribution-oriented feedback and broaden your view on what works in classic self-management approaches.

As a participant, you will learn the following:

  • How to make teams work from different time horizons (the immediate, the transition, and the transformational time horizon).
  • With which essential roles can you shape a team working across departmental boundaries more effectively?
  • To determine which consultation forms are needed to achieve team objectives and how to make them fit together.
  • How to differentiate feedback from the nearby zone of development of team members and guide learning processes from here.

The cycle runs over three days: 21 April, 12 May, and 2 June (and is provided in English). It is aimed at internal and external change agents and managers who want to enrich their self-management approaches with insights from the best recent research and avoid falling into the pitfalls of prescribed practices.

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