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Future Fit Business – Embracing the living-systems logic of Divergence, Convergence, Emergence

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As we face increasing systemic challenges, fast-shifting consumer patterns, complex global-and-local supply chains, and inter-connected wicked problems, we find the 20th century ‘organisation-as-machine’ is giving way to the 21st century ‘organisation-as-living-system’. With it comes a profound shift in how we lead, relate, partner-up and perform. There is much we can learn from the living systems of nature and its 3.8billon yrs of R&D. One over-arching principle is that of divergence, convergence and emergence. Divergence is a diversification, a celebration of diversity and difference. In practice this means opening up artificial boundaries between departments within the organisation and opening up stakeholder […]

leadership

Business Attuning with the Rhythms of Life: Learning from Living Systems

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‘The purpose of life is to live in agreement with Nature.’  Zeno, Greek philosopher, c500BC ‘He who is harmony with Nature hits the mark without effort and apprehends the truth without thinking.’ Confucius, Chinese sage, c500BC ‘Open yourself to the Tao, then trust your natural responses; and everything will fall into place.’ Lao Tzu, Chinese sage, c500BC ‘There is geometry in the humming of the strings, there is music in the spacing of the spheres.’ Pythagoras, Greek philosopher, c500BC Scientific research into the dynamics of living systems has identified four distinct phases of development: growth (G) conservation (C or K) […]

leadership

The Art of Soul Business – Finding our True Nature & Letting it Flow

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‘There is a soul force in the Universe, which if we permit it, will flow through us and produce miraculous results.’   Mahatma Ghandi, activist ‘The seat of the soul is there where the inner and the outer worlds meet’ Novalis, poet ‘The true ground of all being is the infinite, intangible, spirit that infuses all living beings’  David Bohm, physicist ‘This divine ground is within and all around us. We need to create a sanctuary within ourselves to listen to its guidance’  Anne Baring, psychologist ‘Beyond our day-to-day world, beyond our usual human experience, lies a vast and fathomless world. […]

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Nature-Inspired Learning and Leading

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Guest blog by Steve Jones, PhD I’m pleased to be designated Faculty at the Future Fit Leadership Academy. Allow me to introduce a concept that meshes well with the spirit and purpose of FFLA. As a forester and doctoral-trained applied ecologist, and a former university CEO, I am devoting my life to championing the cause of nature-inspired learning and leading. My ultimate intent is to enhance lives and enterprise success, even as my efforts sow the seeds for responsible Earth stewardship. FFLA has a parallel mission. Nature-inspired learning and leading accepts and promotes that every lesson for living, learning, serving, […]

leadership

In these times of transition, what is a leader to do? Find the right questions…

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If I had an hour to solve a problem and my life depended on the solution, I would spend the first 55 minutes determining the proper question to ask for once I know the proper question, I could solve the problem in less than five minutes. ~Albert Einstein It’s a big mess out there. In fact, it is probably several messes, all inextricably linked. How does a leader make sense of it all? How do you find a way to navigate through the mess and make reasonable, robust decisions? We are in the UK, yet the world is so interconnected […]

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The Organisation is a Purposeful Living System

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We are in the midst of a metamorphic period of change unlike anything the world has seen since the Late Middle Ages. With “meta” (meaning “form”) and “morph” (meaning “change”), the word suggests the transformative change in form of human institutions now emerging as we awaken to the realities of climate change and the destruction of ecosystems we have long relied upon for our survival. As the organisation specialist Peter Drucker insightfully said, ‘In times of turmoil, the danger lies not in the turmoil but in facing it with yesterday’s logic’. Nowhere is this metamorphic change more evident than in […]

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The Essential Foundation for Future Leadership

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It is now clear to many leaders, managers and change agents that we need a new way of operating. Yet, so often we seek solutions ‘out there’, a new way that has been invented elsewhere, packed-up, tried-and-tested and ready for us to buy off-the-shelf so we can solve our problems: a silver-bullet, a cook-book approach that, with enough budget, senior management buy-in and will-power, we can implement – job done, tick, move-on, next! There is something within our psyche that definitely prefers the safe, tried-and-tested, well-documented, easy-to-follow, clearly illuminated straight road ahead. But life is not like that. And things […]