LO a means or an end? LO6175

Fri, 22 Mar 1996 23:51:12 -0500

Replying to LO6158 --

irt: CrbnBlu@aol.com, Fri, Mar 22, 1996 10:04 PM EST

Here's a first, a response to my own response. Well, thoughts do develop
don't they. I just finished two of the most amazing days I have
experienced in a long time and wanted to share some of it to the extent
that I've got it sorted out. Light bulbs have been going off in my mind
all day, and it hasn't stopped yet.

A couple weeks ago I posted a message about Emergent Learning, working
with someone over a period of weeks to develop a deeper understanding of
what they understood and believed. And, this development was done from a
question, answer, implications perspective, never attempting to convince
the person of anything. The sessions were essentially an outgrowth of
ideas developed in a paper I wrote entitled, "Change Management: The
Columbo Theory," which you can find at

We have moved from 2 of us, to 3, to 4, and are now at 8 participants. And
we are functioning as a group on a journey in search of understanding
about how to design, foster the development of, and lead an organization
toward its potential. Many of our additional insights can be found in,
"Bureaucracy and Organiztional Politics: Emergent Characteristics of
Structure," at http://www.radix.net/~crbnblu/bop.html.

I really wanted to introduce the group to Senge's concepts, because I have
found them to be an amazingly sound basis for reason, learning, and
action. Yet, I hesitated, and hesitated, and hesitated, because I figured
it would take a long time, and much of it would be apt to be lost in the
attempted transfer. So, what's the alternative. Well, as it has turned
out, all five of the disciplines have been introduced and they were never
mentioned by name. And, as it turns out, the group alread implicitly
understood all of them to begin with, they just never realized it, and
never made their understanding explicit.

All I can do here is give you a taste of how we did this as a group, and
I'm trying to write another paper with a more detailed description. I'll
provide the URL when I get it done... Maybe by Mon.

The real power of the five disciplines lies in their interrelated
consistent sensibility. So, my understanding of the disciplines was used
as a basis for shepherding the discussions (I use the word shepherd in
terms of leading from behind). We simply continued asking questions,
contemplating the answers, and the implications of answers, and the
implications of implicatons. In two 4 hrs sessions we managed to uncover
or discover all of what is contained within the five disciplines and their
implications. And this was all done from what the group alread knew and
understood to make sense regarding people, customers, and the business. At
the end of the two sessions the group was delighted with how much they
discovered they already understood about better ways to create their

I know I'm probably a little incoherent, and I apologize. Presently I'm
trying to sort out all I've learned in the past few days. I'll post
updates as I things seem to come together in a more coherent fashion and
send the URL for the article. I just wanted to write something to help me
sort things out before the understanding began to dissipate....

Gene Bellinger



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