Workshop 1A: The Art and Science of Collaboration Info Sheet
Hosts: Christine Doan & Seamus Campbell Co-Chairs of Startup & Innovation Tablelands
Christine Doan: 71 years of a life of purpose; pre-teen start as an environmentalist; founder; immigrant; Olympic equestrian; lucky; holistic community activist; life-long learner; philanthropist; conscious businesswoman; change agent; driven; sustainability advocate; baby boomer; linguist; systems thinker; impulsive; speaker/presenter; integralist; social entrepreneur; enthusiastic. Latest gig: Transformative Technology. Steep learning curve area at present: art and science of collaboration!
Seamus Campbell: Seamus has been remote-working since the last century (web-design and remote software & automation consulting). Committee member of Startup & Innovation Tablelands for 4 years, and Vice-Chair for 2 years during which time, he pushed to make ST a partially-distributed organisation.
Owner of Boldacious Digital (remote-work specialist, consults about remote-work software and workflow automation)
Also the owner of Sandfly and Mosquito Repellents (a natural insect repellant), and Australian Travelling Entrepreneurs
Explanation of Terms
Hierarchy is the “default”
Nearly every organization today operates according to hierarchy. Hierarchy is the prevailing paradigm, the default approach to all work, and most people can’t imagine life without it.
The implicit (i.e. invisible) and predominant values of hierarchy are power and authority. They are the engine driving this simple system and the currency traded within it. Accumulating enough of each, therefore, is essential to accomplishing anything. This creates a culture where power-grabs and politics overshadow and undermine the attainment of organizational goals.
The paradox of hierarchy: Useful as a structure, problematic as a system
Although hierarchy has been getting an increasingly bad rap in the press, we’d like to offer another perspective, because to frame hierarchy as good or bad is to miss the point entirely.
We can see hierarchies everywhere we look – in nature, in families, and in organizations. Hierarchy shows us the relationship between things. In organizations today, it shows who has more power and authority in any given dyad and in the organization over all. Beginning roughly 5500 years ago, we began using hierarchy to organize labor pools (for infantry and large building projects), manage resources and settle disputes. Yet since that time, our world has gotten increasingly more complicated, requiring that we process exponentially more information, simultaneously, than our predecessors ever had to.
Digging ourselves deeper and deeper
The unconscious reaction to this implicit problem has been to “patch” the reporting structure with a great many tools, techniques, processes, dotted reporting lines, matrices, cross-functional teams and, of course, people, all in an effort to get organizations to perform as we need them to. Our desperate need for collaboration is increasingly a driver of additional patches. So is our desire for more democratic and humane organizations.
Since most of our patches run counter to the fundamental hierarchical values of power and authority, they never come together in an integrated way to form a true system. Instead, they add layers of complexity that are grinding organizations and workers to a halt. When implicitly employed as a (pseudo) system, the hierarchical structure naturally becomes an obfuscating and impenetrable approach to work. Several years ago, the #2 person at a Fortune 5 company explained that his job amounted to “running around patching up relationships among executive team members so their silos won’t destroy the company.”
It’s time to stop this patching. Managing a large organization, governing a country, building and running a nuclear power plant, or addressing poverty, world hunger, and climate change are simply beyond the capacity of traditional hierarchy. Today’s world requires something far more dynamic – a modern, integrated system capable of addressing the complex nature of our work.
THE COLLABORATIVE OPERATING SYSTEM (COS)
The COS is a way of working that works
The Collaborative Operating System is a dynamic and sophisticated system that will categorically out-perform your current approach. You can use the COS to do anything for which you currently use “hierarchy”; for example, you can use it to solve a problem, make a decision, manage a project, or to run an organization, political party, or country.
The COS is transparent
Unlike the hierarchical approach, which is based on the implicit values of power and authority, the Collaborative Operating System is based on the explicit principles of ownership and alignment. The mere act of making the underlying principles explicit has a big impact: Transparency. From these two principles, we’ve designed an integrated and scalable system that will enable you to operationalize these values in literally every aspect of your work. Voilà! Transparency abounds and with it, real accountability.
The COS is fully integrated
Integrated means combining or coordinating separate elements so as to provide a harmonious, interrelated whole. Because every single aspect of the COS is congruent with the underlying principles of ownership and alignment, learning and using it is a self-reinforcing experience. Practitioners will tell you that the COS transforms the way work gets done and the way workers experience it.
Results, results, results!
Teams and organizations that learn the principles and practices of the Collaborative Operating System (COS) report the following:
- Higher levels of engagement in their work
- Increased trust in each other, the organization and its leaders
- An increased ability to think strategically and invest resources where they matter
- Increased overall execution speeds
- Less wasted effort and, as a result, increased profits
- An ability to solve complex, multi-stakeholder problems that were previously unsolvable
The COS can be seamlessly and incrementally woven into the way you’re already working. You can expect immediate, measurable results that will quickly help make the COS your new default approach to work. Check out the Collaborative Operating System info and training available here.
Provide quality learning opportunities in hard and soft skills to help new and established enterprises and entrepreneurs who want to grow and thrive. Facilitate collaboration, mentoring, and knowledge and skills sharing. Encourage, showcase, and inspire innovation in business
Lead the Tablelands business ecosystem, practising what we preach to be an innovative, lean organisation embracing modern business practices
ST also runs the Tablelands Business Hub at 57 Loder Street in Atherton. This facility is available for workshops, meetings (in person or via Zoom), courses, hot-desking etc. Email [email protected] for event & room rental details.
CALL TO ACTION
For information about Collaborative Software:
0410 609 267
Ask Seamus at Boldacious www.boldacious.com.au/
For information about Collaboration Training & Collaborative Devices eg Transformative technology:
0419 656 247
Ask Christine www.christinedoan.com.au/