Re: Unwritten Rules - "Hidden Values" LO1343

Michael McMaster (
Sun, 21 May 1995 21:20:10 +0000

Replying to LO1333 --

There are numberless methods for getting at existing social or
corporate values. None that I use require much consultant
intervention and no management of the process. The experts on a
culture are those in the culture. Social anthropologists are
probably a major source of the breakthroughs in awareness of socially
constructed realities of all kinds.

There are two basic approaches that work well together. One is forms
of dialogue where the values are allowed to emerge from the dialogue
by a little skillful facilitation. A great help for these is to have
groups create cartoons, drawings, or even modified versions of
broadway plays to express them "non-rationally".

The second is a process of visual display where interaction can be
anonymous and in one's own good time. A large public display (or
computer for the computer literate environments) is created where
people can write what they think the values are in their own way.
These boards will generate jokes, poems and pure expression as part
of the valid participation.

A skillful compression (summarisation) then is made and put back on
public display - not by anonymous process - and a second round of
creative input commences. After a time or three of this, the values
will begin to emerge.

Then select and work with them as trials until they are seen to be
what is so - or changed.

Michael McMaster