In2:IN Newsletter
In2:InThinking Network April Newsletter


Greetings!

This newsletter is prepared monthly by volunteers of the In2:InThinking Network. Content comes from volunteers. We invite you to further develop our network by sharing this newsletter with friends and colleagues.

Why settle for the prevailing style of thought? Be a leader. Improve your thinking about thinking.

2007 Forum Fast Approaching!

Register now to take part in next week's Forum!

Anyone interested in improving the effectiveness of individuals and organizations will gain a deeper appreciation of leadership and systems thinking from our annual 6-day Forum.  Past attendees reflect a wide variation in backgrounds - always a highlight of our event - and as such we have confidence that our program will continue to be valuable to anyone interested in "better thinking about thinking." 

The cost of the Forum is $350 per person, with a $200 rate for full-time students. Both rates include all pre- and post-conference seminars and workshops, conference presentations and activities, materials, and meals (dinner on Friday, continental breakfast on Saturday and Sunday, and lunch and dinner on Saturday).

NMA/In2:IN Dinner ($40): Wed., April 11th, see details to the right
Pre-Conference Activities (no charge): Thursday and Friday, April 12th & 13th

Conference Activities ($350 per person): 4pm, Friday, April 13th through noon on Sunday, April 15th
Post-Conference Activities (no charge): Monday and Tuesday, April 16th & 17th

Member Profile - Rennie Methuen
Rennie Methuen
The Facts
I live in Finland with my family, but probably the years spent in Africa in Zimbabwe as a young boy have affected my thinking the most. That's how I learned about culture. I studied dentistry at the University of Kuopio, where a teacher gave me an article on quality to read in c.1987. He said quality thinking was going to be important and that quality, information and leadership matters would converge. We didn't understand what he was talking about. Encouraged by him I studied information management at the Helsinki University of Technology. Under Merja Karivalo we learned to look at organizations through new glasses - from an information perspective. It was really exciting! In c.1991 Pirjo Janhunen, a local consultant, introduced us to Deming. In May 2005 I had the privilege of attending the Deming Transformation Forum in the UK - warmest thanks to Hazel Cannon and Alan Winlow. It was an unforgettable experience being able to listen to people like Bill Bellows, Jon Bergstrom, Myron Tribus (the Blue Tit (Parus caeruleus)-man), and many others, live. I also attended Bill's Red and Blue Pen Companies-workshop there.

In2:IN Forum Attendance
The 2007 Forum will be my first, but hopefully not the last! Getting to attend the Forum is better than a dream come true! Inspiration - the people and the chance to learn.

Tell us about a recent "a ha" moment.
I was recently struck by the simplicity and sheer truth of many of Deming's quotations: Survival is not mandatory. - There is a penalty for ignorance. We are paying through the nose. - You can not inspect quality into the product; it is already there. - Best efforts will not substitute for knowledge. - Down the tube we go! (I came up with two of my own: Some theories work much better than others. - Finnish wives are the best in the world. ;)

What book(s) are you reading now?
Lately I've been perusing dental books - I don't know if many readers would find them interesting or useful ;)

What recent book have you read that you consider both beneficial and readable?
I recently finished Kari Helin's "Yhdessa menestymisen taito" which translates as "Being successful together". It's a thin but very readable book about working together. For those hesitating, I'll try to find the reference to a book by an Englishman on why the Finnish language should adopted globally. ;)

What advice do you have for people new to In2:IN?
Thanks for making the world a better place! It's all about relationships.
Member Profile - Linda Finkelstein
The Facts
Playing a senior leadership role for over 25 years with MICA Consulting Partners. We specialize in Strategic Talent Management. As trusted advisors, we help Fortune 500, 1000 and entrepreneurial firms - select, align, develop and advance - the people required to achieve measurable business results.

Tell us about a recent "a ha" moment.
In my practice I facilitate executive coaching initiatives. I'm struck by the level of commitment and engagement of senior managers. And the profound learning and changes in behaviors they are demonstrating as an outcome of private coaching.

What book(s) are you reading now?

Currently reading "What Got You Here Won't Get You There", written by Marshall Goldsmith.

What recent book have you read that you consider both beneficial and readable?
"Blink", written by Malcolm Gladwell. It's about how we think about thinking, abut choices that seem to be made in an instant. Why some people are brilliant decision makers, while others are consistently inept. How our brain really works. Why our best decisions often those that are impossible to explain to others.

What advice do you have for people new to In2:IN?
There is tremendous knowledge and experience to glean from tapping into the hearts and minds of the network. You would be well served on many levels to do so. At the same opportunities to share your expertise with others.
Partners InThinking
The Deming Forum
In this feature, we highlight a Partner Organization of the In2:InThinking Network. We believe the resources of these organizations will expand your thinking about thinking... This month we are featuring The Deming Forum & The Transformation Forum

The Facts:
Founded in 2000, The Deming Forum aims to enable and optimise learning & application of the Deming philosophy. The philosophy centres around the System of Profound Knowledge (SOPK) a radical and innovative method for realising true, sustainable transformation for organisations, teams and individuals. The Deming Forum operates as a not for profit organisation. We create stimulating learning and networking opportunities that deepen knowledge and understanding of Deming's thinking. At our annual 'Forum', people from all industries and walks of life can gain new insights to help their organisations and themselves on their transformation journey.
Find out more on our
website.

In 2006 we created The Transformation Forum Ltd, a UK based organisation that also operates from The Court House in Ampthill and will be the organiser of our Learning events and retail supplier of all the Deming Forum publications, books, and other learning materials.

The Deming Forum will continue to develop its mission to be a learning and development resource. We're fortunate to have a management team consisting of representatives from industry and the public sector who donate their time and energy. 

How does your organization compliment the In2:InThinking Network?
Like In2:IN, we are continually looking for opportunities to expand our learning and to embrace new and complementary thinking. We seek opportunities to optimise collaboration between individuals and organisations around the world using systems thinking and cooperation as our trigger.

Tell us about your membership. What does it mean to be a member of your organization and how does one become a member?
We do not have members, we have supporters. Individuals can support the Deming Forum by contributing an annual donation of 95.00 ($175 at today's exchange rate) which allows benefits including 10% discount on all Deming Forum sponsored events; discounts on affiliated events; unique access to a book, tape and video library; access to archive conference papers and photographs, and discount offers during the year. You can complete the relevant section of the booking form for the annual Forum or contact us direct.

Organisations wishing to become a Corporate Sponsor of the Deming Forum and have their logo displayed at all Deming Forum sponsored events are welcome to contact us on +44 (0)1525 402323 for more details.

What resources does your organization offer its members?
In addition to our annual Forum, we offer seminars on systems thinking and specialist guest seminars exploring new and complimentary thinking.

Our 3 regular seminars are "Introduction to the Deming Management Method"; "Understanding the Deming Management Method"; and "Data, Variation, and WinChart".

We are a focal point and information service providing knowledge and support in applying Systems Thinking. We do this not just for our supporters but for everyone.

The Deming Forum holds the copyright for most of the British originated Deming publications (including the famous Deming A5 booklets) and is building an archive of material of interest to people wishing to learn more about Dr. W. Edwards Deming and his methodology.

For books, videos, DVDs and a great version of the Red Bead Experiment, you can download the Transformation Forum Learning Store brochure from our website.

In 2005 the Deming Forum was featured in a BBC Radio 4 programme, 'In Business'. They recorded a programme on Dr. Deming and his management method. You can listen to the programme online. and then select Listen to In Business for 30 June 2005 from the left hand column on this page.

What exciting developments are on the horizon for your organization?
The Transformation Forum 2007 entitled "The Nature of Transformation: Creating a Culture of Innovation" takes place from Tuesday 22 to Thursday 24 May 2007 @ The Robinson Executive Centre, Wyboston Lakes, Bedfordshire, UK. Featuring world class speakers and practitioners, it promises to be a thought-provoking and fun event.

Our spectacularly successful 24 hour UK MasterClass with Jeffrey Liker, author of "The Toyota Way", run in cooperation with Rubicon Associates, will be repeated this May.  During the next 12 months we shall be introducing learning events on Leadership, Creativity, a Red Beads MasterClass as well as some other guest seminars.

Strategic Management Articles from the Haines Centre for Strategic Management
FREE Strategic Management Articles

The Haines Centre has provided the following articles for free download: "Becoming a Strategic Thinker on a Daily Basis" and "Systems Thinking-the Natural Way the World Works".
 
Stephen Haines is the author of many articles as well as over 14 books on Strategic Management based on the Systems Thinking Approach.

Stephen is the CEO and founder of the Haines Centre for Strategic Management. The Haines Centre for Strategic Management is the world leader in Strategic Management with 38 offices in 20 different countries.  
 
If you find these articles interesting you can visit: http://www.hainescentre.com/free/articles_request.htm for a complete list of articles written by Stephen Haines.  
Book Review
Dialogue:The Art Of Thinking Together
Dialogue: The Art Of Thinking Together

Author:
William Isaacs
Publisher: Currency Doubleday
Length: 428 pages
Reviewer: Dale S. Deardorff

W. Isaacs, founder and president of Dialogos has created a great book in the area of dialogue for Leaders or teams that are focusing on creating synergies thru Thinking Together. Abba Eban summarizes the central problem stating that "Leaders have not learned to think together... and that most political and corporate Leaders, academics, community builders and families struggle with the same problem".

According to the text what is needed is a powerful set of practical tools and practices that help us understand that how we THINK does affect how we talk and communicate to others. The author states clearly that a Dialogue is not something you do to another person... it is something you do with another person!

A dialogue is a shared inquiry, a way of thinking and reflecting together which creates a conversation with a center, not sides. The word can trace its Greek root to "a flow of meaning, an ability to take multiple unique issues and opinions to conversation and create something new and original". Communication is the center of our culture as individuals, yet we rarely make time for true communication in listening & hearing our inner voice in society today.

Isaacs' book is organized into five "Key Parts":
  1. What Is Dialogue?
  2. Building Capacity for New Behavior;
  3. Predictive Intuition;
  4. Architecture of the Invisible;
  5. Widening the Circle.
The author uses many parables of his own personal experiences and case studies to show how dialog can help resolve differences and open opportunities between groups. It is the ability to take a step towards a conversation that allows people to THINK together in a relationship which implies you no longer take your own position as final. This book not only offers us the opportunity to reflect on our own mindsets and practices, it also provides a useful cognitive frameworks and repeatable strategies to help Leaders and teams resolve differences and engage in the New Behavior we call dialogue.

Building Capacity for New Behavior is centered on:
  • Listening - without resistance or opposition
  • Respecting - awareness and integrity of another's position
  • Suspending Opinion - assumptions, judgment and certainty
  • Voicing - what needs to be said (p. 419)
Isaacs points out that we do not work hard in preparing to listen. The listening element of dialogue cannot be overemphasized because it can allow a way to perceive more directly the ways we jointly participate in the world around us... This means the interconnection between listening & hearing others balanced by our inner voice and our reactions." Only when we can participate with others, understand the difference between memory and thinking and striving not to judge to create a right and a wrong idea can we move away from thinking alone.

Read more on the Art of Dialogue...
here.
Did One Shoe Fit All Roman Soldiers?
Alan Winlow, a fellow InThinker from East Newtown in the north of England, has recently uncovered another  example of "one size does not fit all," a reminder that systems thinking favors variation management not variation reduction.   As InThinkers well know, "it depends."

Alan's example involves the leather footwear worn by Roman soldiers in Scotland in the 1st Century AD.   As shown, adjustments to the shoe size, to account for soldier-to-soldier variation in the "uppers" (let alone left foot to right foot variation) were done by changing the lengths of the slots in the leather uppers, as shown in the photograph above.   Different lengths and widths allowed for different sizes of soles.  While we know that such armies did march on their stomachs, Alan has also found that that one size meal did not feed all soldiers.
Partner Events and Resources

Deming Transformation Forum 2007 ~ Creating a Culture of Innovation

22, 23 & 24 May 2007
3 days of the year that will change the other 362!

Come to the Transformation Forum 2007 and learn about the key disciplines underlying every successful transformation. It is this perspective and knowledge that focuses the people and change activity and enables the whole organisation to work successfully together. Don't blame the tools ~ get the knowledge.

So what is transformation? A transformed organisation will have a profoundly different approach to managing its processes, its people and its relationships. It will understand its customers in a new way and will use an understanding of variation to learn, innovate and drive lasting improvements. It will confront and challenge leaders, managers, staff and ultimately the entire business culture. The new mindset will raise the organisation to a new richer level, and enable it to stay ahead.

Over 3 days you can learn the principles of the Deming Management method and hear amazing international thinkers and practitioners.

In This Issue
2007 Forum Announcements
Member Profile - Rennie Methuen
Member Profile - Linda Finkelstein
Partners InThinking
Strategic Management Articles
Book Review
Did One Size Shoe Fit All Roman Soldiers?
Partner Events and Resources
NMA In2:IN Dinner
OD Preview - John Pourdehnad
Ideas to Ponder...
Making a Difference...
DLN - Thought of the Month
Quick Links
Signup Block
NMA & In2:IN Co-Sponsor Pre-Forum Dinner Program with Steve Buchanan
 
Join the National Management Association (NMA) Valley Chapter and In2:IN as we kick-off the 2007 Forum activities with an evening dinner program featuring past Forum attendee and fellow InThinker, Steve Buchanan speaking about: "It's All In Here! Knowing the Power of Me." (see more details below...)

Steve Buchanan











Where & When:

Wednesday,
April 11, 2007
5:00 PM Social Hour
6:00 PM Dinner

Warner Center Hilton - 6360 Canoga Avenue
(same location as the Forum)

Cost:
The event is free for NMA members and $40 for guests and Forum attendees (this fee covers your meal).

Meal Choices:
Roasted Sirloin
Grilled Chicken
Vegetarian Stir-Fry

Sign Up Now!
Reserve your seat and indicate your meal choice by calling one of the boosters listed on the flyer or sign up online!

More Details
We each go through our days encountering things that we would describe as joyous, mundane or just plain terrible. Our past experiences and beliefs frame these events in ways that produce powerful emotions. Through Steve's stories and his easy to understand examples you will be able to realize and capture the power within yourself - the power to become aware of how these emotions arise and the
power to reframe events in a more positive light. As our worlds become more stressful and complex we each need to take advantage of the power within ourselves.

About Steve
Steve is a Business Performance Consultant with over twenty years experience leading others, managing projects, and delivering
results. He provides consulting and coaching to a variety of for-profit and not-for-profit executives in the areas of business strategy, execution, and leadership development. The cornerstone of his work is the belief that it takes a successful combination of people and processes to deliver results.
Ongoing Discussion Preview

The Ongoing Discussion (OD) for April will feature John Pourdehnad of  the Ackoff Center.

On Thursday and Friday, April 26th and 27th, Johnnie will engage us in a dialogue on the topic of "Synthetic  Program Management."

This month's OD announcement will be released on or before Friday, April  20th.   

For those readers not already on the OD mailing list - click below...

Ideas to Ponder...

Check out these articles from Stanford Alumni Magazine:

"What Do We Tell the Kids?" You have a bright child, and you want her to succeed. You should tell her how smart she is, right?

"The Effort Effect" According to a Stanford psychologist, you'll reach new heights if you learn to embrace the occasional tumble.

"Intelligent Design" When information needs to be communicated, Edward Tufte demands both truth and beauty.

*************
The desire to take medicine is perhaps the greatest feature which distinguishes man from animals.

Sir William Osler




*************
The spirit of resistance to government is so valuable on certain occasions, that I wish it always to be kept alive.

Thomas Jefferson

Thomas

Jefferson



Making a Difference from Where We Are...

Check out the Ackoff Center Blog for the latest feedback on Russ Ackoff's latest book.

Russ Ackoff
Deming Learning Network -
Thought of the Month

These items are contributed by Gordon Hall of the
Deming Learning Network in Aberdeen, Scotland.

How simple or complex are we?
Are we the simple reactive beings that fundamental behaviourists think we are? Do we simply respond to stimuli?  Are we predominately self centred and think in terms of rank. status, possessions and sex?
 
Or are we more complex and have other centred attributes of altruism, affiliation, care giving, pride and remorse?
 
If our organisations think we are self centred than they have structures to manipulate or "motivate" the individual such as targets, budgets, appraisal, incentives, career paths, etc.
 
If on the other hand the organisation believes in our other centred nature than the underlying theme is trust with the aim of releasing our full intellectual potential.
 
The danger of organisations and governments that believe we are simple reactive beings is that CEOs and governments take onto themselves for deciding direction and developing a means for telling us where to go and what to do. Bush and Blair's adventure in Iraq is a classic example. In the political field intelligent debate is replaced by "spin" and the general dumbing down of society
 
Useful read: - Charles Ehin, former Dean of The Gore School of Business, in his book "Unleashing Intellectual Capital."
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