For centuries, great thinkers have instinctively stepped out the door and begun walking, or at the very least pacing, when they needed to boost creativity.
Systems thinking can provide some of its greatest benefits by giving companies a way to make sure that the befits of their innovation efforts are not compromised by the lack a big picture understanding. Without requiring any additional resources, innovation efforts targeted with the big picture in mind can produce greater, lasting benefits for the organisation, and a company that gets more benefit from it’s innovation efforts will have a competitive edge over it’s rivals.
The most effective and meaningful changes I’ve observed have come from both embracing creative practices and also establishing new foundations: generative principles of engagement, expanded mind sets, new frameworks, and entering into a “co-creative partnering” type of relationship with each other, and with the unknown. For example, weaving improv-based principles as the rules of engagement in meetings can transform both the energy and outcomes
I expect no one would disagree that creative innovation often arises from scarcity. From Ritz cracker apple pie to the dinners we developed with nothing but a microwave and hot pot during college, some creative spark in human nature thrives when put to the challenge of limited resources.
Knowledge is knowing a tomato is a fruit, wisdom in not putting it in a fruit salad.’ We seem to be seeking short cuts, ‘get rich quick’ solutions. We want stuff to happen now, to happen fast. In so doing we lose the essence of wisdom, of skill at a high level. This takes time to acquire, to practise, to refine. It takes time to understand when things work and what makes them fail in other situations. It takes time to suspend judgement, to not view things in terms of absolutes, good or bad, right or wrong. Sometimes we forget what it is to learn. Every so often it is good to be reminded.
But there can’t be multiple best practices? Can there? Yes there can, all depending on the setting and context in which you are trying to apply it. What is best in one place isn’t necessarily best in all. Yes, we must be consistent, but only within the setting, not necessarily between settings, and not locked in stone over time. In practice, this is affected by the degree of complexity for the process we are trying to re-engineer.
Intractable conflicts are extremely complex in nature, so complex that it is difficult to sustain a mental map of factors that influence the conflict. The complexity of the conflict is too much to handle cognitively. Once the conflict is simplified, opposing forces can dig in, increasing intractability. Then you’re stuck! This article looks at treating these problems a different way.