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Inviting Leadership: Opening Space in Everyday Practice

Open Space Technology has been called meeting methodology, organization transformation, intentional self-organization and surfing the chaos. Since Harrison Owen described it, more than 20 years ago, it has enabled all kinds of people, in every kind of organization and community, to create inspired meetings and events - and to post phenomenal business results.

So how can we do this everyday, this practice, these results? What are we to do when we get "stuck" in complex systems, diverse groups, and urgent and conflicted situations? What does OpenSpaceTechnology teach us about managing and leading, moving again, for everyday phenomenal results? And how does Open Space fit together with many other practices that are obviously benefitting leaders, organizations and communities?

  1. Opening the Heart of What Matters
  2. Inviting Everyone into the Question
  3. Supporting the Flow of Gifts and Giving
  4. Making Good on Promise and Promises

We call these the four practices Inviting Leadership. They are the distillation of many years Open Space Technology practice -- significantly informed by Appreciative Inquiry, Zapchen Somatics, Asset-Based Community Development, World Cafe, Search Conference and Participative Design, Social Computing, Integral Theory, and a number of other Methods?.

Inviting Leadership wants to share the common heart of these Maps, in ways that everyone can easily understand, and apply for themselves, in the everyday work of real organizations. /WorkingDRAFT

Meanwhile, the working and learning go on. Contact? if you'd like to be part of it.

Inviting Leadership: Can We Have the Map and Eat Our Cake Too?

The point is to describe these practices in terms of their deepest shapes and sensations -- to name the things we are doing, to give shape to our organizations, before we are doing anything else. We want to notice those innermost and early-most movements that give rise to everything else in organization.

  1. Opening the Heart of What Is (people and issues, what really matters, feeling the pulse, want)
  2. Inviting Everyone into the Question (passion and resp, issues and opps, seeing direction, have)
  3. Supporting the Flow of Gifts and Giving (one more thing, voluntary (giving), letting go/giving control, holding space, need)
  4. Making Good on Promise and Promises (reporting, accounting, gratitude, learning and contribution, grounding, realizing, do)

What are we willing to know? Who are we willing to show? How do we support the flow, so we can let go, and let grow, forward? Are we using all we have? And making all we can? (Does early-most mean it has to sound like Seuss?)

For now, let's just say that Inviting Leadership is an Inviting Question, that springs from the practice of an Open Heart, and relies on generous Support to sustain it, until Good can be delivered, reported, realized.

More as the outline below takes shape. The real trick is to be able to write/talk about it and do it at the same time.

Inviting Leadership: Putting an Open Space Worldview to Work -- for Good


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Last edited September 15, 2006 10:43 pm CentralTimeUSA by MichaelHerman
© 1998-2019 Michael Herman and www.michaelherman.com, unless signed by another author or organization. Please do not reprint or distribute for commercial purposes without permission and full attribution, including web address and this copyright notice. Permission has always been granted gladly to those who contact me and say something about themselves, their work, and their use of these materials. Thank you and good luck! - Michael