Category Archives: context

Synthesis in the Collaborative Flow: Why Process Matters (Ch.16)

As we move toward team dynamics that are based less on structure and more on flow, we face a dilemma. We gain the benefit of new thinking, serendipity and emerging ideas, but isn’t there danger that we lose focus?

The short answer is yes.

We must explore the need for balance points. We’ll also need a flexible lightweight process that allows us to navigate the challenges we’ll encounter. In my experience there are several ways we can enable the benefits of collaborative flow without losing our way. In today’s Book Review topic, as we explore The DNA of Collaboration Chapter 16 on Process, let’s take apart some of the most important contributing factors:

  • Step 1. Framing. We need enough structure to support a dialog, but space for it to evolve. How can we shift our facilitation thinking away from control?
  • Step 2. Guidelines & Introductions. Who is here? Why? How is this going to work?
  • Step 3. Context. We often plow into collaboration w/o thought to relevance. What are the challenges of changing context in real time, during the conversation? When should context be set? held? changed?
  • Step 4. Brainstorm & Dialog. How will we interact?
  • Step 5. Patterns. Looking for Patterns is like “mining for gold”. What practices can make this easier, more intuitive, more common?
  • Step 6. Synthesis. Aka “curation,” it’s about capture, prioritization of outcomes, and teasing out the value. Why is this so difficult? How can we get better at it?

Many who participate in the most established Twitter Chats will notice some of these elements. I believe they have evolved into their current form due to social collaboration in action. In fact, we continue to explore these dynamics at #smchat (social media), #ecosys (k12 edreform) and of course here at #cdna (collaboration practice).

Share your thoughts. Which aspects of these steps resonate? Which of these do you use most frequently?

Looking forward to our conversation. See you online.

Chris aka @sourcepov


Collaboration DNA: Unpacking Intention (Ch.4)

When it comes to teams, do you wonder about motivations of others?  What about your own?

As the author of The DNA of Collaboration I’m excited to kick off our virtual Book Tour (via Twitter chat) this SAT 8/4 at 11aET.  It should be an interesting and insightful conversation on “Intention” .. an important topic that I explore in Chapter 4.

Here’s how we’ll frame the conversation:

Q1. In team settings, can we detect (a.) going thru motions vs. (b.) acting from deep conviction? Can asking ‘why’ surface #intention?

Q2. Wheatley and Maslow tell us survival is a primal motivator. In business, how does this impact our willingness to take risks?

Q3. Dweck says learning & risk-taking are easy when we have a growth mindset vs. obsessing on our perceived fixed limitations. Agree?

Q4. The 21st century seems to demand focus on quick wins over longer-term goals. Can both be achieved? What’s the priority?

After brief introductions at 11aET, we’ll jump into the fray to tackle these questions.

Want to get a feel for intentional collaboration in #cdna context?  Use the “Look Inside” feature on Amazon .. I introduce the concept in the Prologue, which you can read in it’s entirety online.

More on the series? Our broader agenda is taking shape.

Thanks in advance for your interest; I hope to see you at this discussion, or at one like in in the weeks ahead. Mark your calendars:  SATURDAYS 11am ET.

- Chris Jones, author, The DNA of Collaboration


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