Re: An Approach to Change LO1465

Michael McMaster (
Wed, 31 May 1995 07:17:33 +0000

Replying to LO1435 --

David points out that
> Once we get many folks used
> to working in teams assembled because of their assets as people--not as
> representatives of a specific organizational unit--we will be there.

A way of thinking that removes the attachment to identity with
specific teams, projects, etc and allows for greater flexibility in
working with the whole - and even with customers and suppliers - is
to distinguish "communities of competence" or, as John Seely Brown of
Xerox has called them, "communities of practice".

Communities are not structurally coupled (to borrow from F. Varela)
and at the same time rather more loosely coupled than the tight
relationships of identities that powerful teams often have. These
communities tend to allow for full individual expression and yet
contain their own self-organising restraints.

> Being seen and known as a suite of skills and experience is more rewarding
> for many people than being pegged in a single program.

Being part of a community includes the competences - from which one
can contribute - and a greater expression from participating in what
emerges from a community that is larger than the individuals, is a
place where most people can find themselves.

Michael McMaster