Thinking Whole: The How To

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It also gets richer than that. Tapping into the collective native intelligence of one person creates dynamic tensions and positive syntheses. All this mind power is tapped, released, combined and recombined in the meeting repeatedly.

Here’s an important point – when two people talk, their minds can re-program every microsecond. I reprogram based on things you say, or do, or exude. You do the same. It’s like “dueling banjos” on steroids. All of this happens so rapidly we don’t even know it’s happening. But it is… and with the right process, which we have, there are opportunities aplenty to channel all this mind energy into productive articulations and manifestations. Thinking Whole not only provides a safe space where all of the multiple minds can play nice together, it also provides a platform through which they can be expressed, articulated, and refine in astonishingly short time.

One of the most popular words in business these days is “collaboration;” as if collaboration were to be the most desirable dynamic between and among teams and organization. My family is from Poland where we have long had an uneasy appreciation of the word “collaboration” and of the status of “collaborator.” According to the Oxford Dictionaries, the first definition of “collaboration” is “the action of working with someone to produce or create something.” Oxford’s second definition: “traitorous cooperation with the enemy.” It is implicit in both definitions, although clearer in the latter, that there may or may not be equality between the collaborators.

We prefer to use the word “collegial” in our work. That word means “marked by power or authority vested equally in each of a number of colleagues.” We don’t just use the word or its definition; we have built Thinking Whole around a platform of collegiality. Inherent in the system is a leveling/elevating mechanism so that, in our meetings, the “squeaky wheel gets neither more nor less attention than the other wheels on the wagon.

Collegiality argues for the ultimate in inclusion. Most planning sessions for important organizational, corporate, or team meetings begin with the question: “Who needs to be in this meeting?” What is really being asked: “who do we need to keep out of this meeting” on the assumption that certain people will either fail to participate, fail to contribute, or, the worst case, undermine the meeting. Our motto has become – anyone who can ultimately screw things up belongs in this meeting – so just get a bigger room.

In some ways, it is precisely these same people who should be in that meeting; if for no other reason than that if their negativity is dealt with in the initial planning session and if they are left with the feeling that they were heard (and they will be) then they will be less likely to sabotage after the fact. While this sounds like eminently common sense, the difference is that dealing with this situation and these people is part of the mechanism of Thinking Whole.

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