New Kinds of Hidden Insights – facilitating strategic choices for Astia

Astia was founded in Silicon Valley in 1999 as a non-profit organization dedicated to identifying and promoting best-in-class women high-growth entrepreneurs.  It is transforming the way businesses are funded in the here and now, providing capital, connections, and guidance that fuel the growth of highly innovative, women-led ventures around the globe.  They have recently had a number of investment successes and want to build on them to further their charitable objectives and build the number of successful women entrepreneurs. Continue reading

Leveraging the right “kind” of positive deviance?

Awareness of the term “positive deviance” is rising, as a way of solving tough problems by finding what already works.  It’s been the topic of seminars for health leaders.  It’s been frequently mentioned by Helen Bevan, Chief Transformation Officer, NHS England, as part of a repertoire of approaches to front-line change, and by Jo Bibby in her Health Foundation Blog.  It is the subject of a slide show by Bob Sutton, and gets a brief mention as a possible new option in a recent article about the limitations of quality improvement projects in the NHS by Prof Mary Dixon Woods and Graham P Martin.

There is, however, no available comparison of the various interpretations and applications of “positive deviance,” and some authors mix up the various conceptual frameworks.  This article aims to put this right, and offer tips to leaders for implementation. Continue reading

A checklist for engaging people

Many change models, Hidden Insights included, stress the need for engaging people in change early on.  To do this, we need their active co-operation, and involvement, often in focus groups, large-scale events such as Open Space or World Cafe or just in conversations.  But you’ve got to get them to turn up in a positive frame of mind, ideally ready to volunteer to get involved….

Here’s a checklist, based on experience of implementing successful employee and community projects.  Its parent comes from the successful MRSA reduction project in the USA, recorded in the book, Inviting Everyone, Healing Healthcare Through Positive Deviance, by Arvind Singhal, Prucia Bruscell and Curt Lindberg.  We’ve added some learning of our own. Continue reading

New perspectives – psycho-social evidence for benefits of positive deviance

Jane Lewis and Dr Joanna Wilde ran a very successful workshop for the British Psychological Society in June.  This introduced positive deviance (PD) to a wider audience of accredited occupational and organisational psychologists.

We highlighted the benefits of working in this way at a time when workplaces can feel increasingly pressured and toxic.  True to the principles of positive deviance, it was an interactive session where participants worked on their own cases, mainly linked to staff (and volunteer) engagement, leadership and culture change.  Jane acted as the “expert non-expert” and Joanna commented on the links between our experience and current thinking and theory.  Her review helps to explain why positive deviance does work, and why it is particularly appropriate in the current climate. Continue reading

Human management, Hidden Insights and the British Psychological Society

We’re delighted to be sharing a platform with Dr Joanna Wilde on 3rd June at the British Psychological Society’s training centre in London.  We are running a CPD-accredited workshop for practitioners, to demonstrate a practical, evidence-based approach to human management and leadership. Continue reading

Emergent OD and the Buurtzorg model – reducing costs and satisfying demand

At the moment the pressure is on for HR and OD professionals to create flexible and responsive organisations, making the most of the trends and technologies available.  In the current economic climate, with productivity only just starting to improve, people have limited time for change projects and organisations are getting flatter, putting a greater load on managers.  So how can this be achieved? Continue reading

Hidden Insights featured in two key conferences!

Thanks to NHS Elect and South East Employers for spreading the word about Hidden Insights.

NHS Elect, which is itself part of the NHS,  supports more than 50 trusts across the county to improve their services and develop their people.  We are speaking and running a workshop at their annual members’ conference at the Central Hall, Westminster, on 13th November.  This is to show how Hidden Insights gives a new lens for change leaders, offering a different way to get patients taking responsibility for their own health, and to create collaborative relationships, engagement and behaviour change across organisational silos and between patients and professionals. Continue reading

Improving Performance – A story from our Director of Relaxation

cat

Is improving performance just too hard?  And expensive?

Be more cat…..

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Positive deviance in Paris – key learning points

Jane makes a point
Jane presenting – courtesy of Cecile Demailly

The first day of this year’s Change Leaders conference in Paris was devoted to positive deviance (PD) – an update on new case studies and what’s been learned since the sad passing of Jerry Sternin.   Denis Bourgeois, one of the former programme directors of the Consulting and Coaching for Change master’s programme, cited PD’s development as an important innovation to come out of the  programme.  Denis described PD as a “crack in the wall,” opportunistic approach to change, rather than a “bulldozer” approach.  But it’s not all “touchy-feely” as it is challenging and evidence-driven.

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Positive reactions to positive deviance in Frankfurt

Jane Lewis had a really enjoyable weekend in Frankfurt at the inaugural meeting of the European Organisational Design Forum.  Presenting a new approach to other consultants and change specialists can be a challenge, but the multi- national group were interested and challenging in a really positive way.

Jane’s presentation covered how Positive Deviance has been used in organisations to uncover hidden solutions and hidden wisdom.  Problems can be solved within existing resources.  The question was posed – “how can we design organisations that allow this kind of empowerment to happen?”  There was a lot of knowledge and expertise in the room and this led to many stimulating discussions,  and ideas about potential applications, both in organisations and communities.

Jane with Stuart Wigham (Aston University and Birmingham City Council), Professor Andrew Campbell (Ashridge Strategic Management Centre) and Wulf Schoenberg (Deutsche Telekom AG)