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Kate Dwyer

I feel oh-so-lucky to have been part of a small team of graphic facilitators that my company (Collective Next) sent to Dallas to scribe the talks at TEDxSMU. Not that I expected anything less, but it was a truly transformative experience. I mean, where else but at a TED or TEDx event could you witness a tiny 7th grader shock the stage with a booming poetry slam performance and then hear a talk about wabi-sabi (the Japanese term for imperfect ...

Tricia Walker

How long is 150 years? Sure, it’s a decent span of time. But consider that only in the last 150 years, two very important decisions were made:

  • Slavery was abolished in the United States in 1865. (147 years ago!)
  • Women were given the right to vote in 1920. (92 years ago!)

How about 40 years? Now we’re talking within our own lifetime! Consider that only in the last 40 years, these decisions were made:

  • Homosexuality was...
Geoff Amidei

During our recent Presidential Elections, I was introduced to a great concept that I had been theretofore unaware of, “the illusion of explanatory depth.”  

(And yes, I did intend to write “theretofore” in the opening. But, full disclosure, I’ve never used that word before and had to look it up to be sure it was a “real” word.)

The illusion of explanatory depth is a simple concept: We often don’t know as much as we think we know. As...

Mason Smith

We let our guard down during this Friday’s Transcribe and discussed what we fear as facilitators of change. Though each member of our team has varying degrees of experience as a facilitator, we found many shared fears and effective practices to overcome them.

The most common fear was that as consultants partnering with subject matter experts to solve complex business challenges, we may not share an equal level of understanding of the content being...

Mason Smith

Transcribe is not only a laboratory to test new ideas, it is also a test kitchen for tools that facilitate effective collaboration. The virtual world is becoming more and more mainstream and we at Collective Next have been considering how we can harness its power to bring people together and move them forward. At TEDx Boston 2012, we were introduced to the amazing vritual environment that AvayaLive offers and they were kind enought to build us a virtual office...

Katia Greene

There is a moment before stepping out in front of a group of people who have come together to tackle a problem that requires all of your attention and ability when you have a decision to make. You can choose to approach the unknown as palpable ambiguity or malleable possibility. During this Friday’s Transcribe, we here at Collective Next discussed how we attempt to balance the necessary tight rope walk of preventing the bottom from dropping out and blowing the...

Hamilton Ray

Today in the Lab, we discussed a concept that is very near and dear to our Collective hearts. Through a discussion that went in a variety of directions (and inspired by conversations that we had been having for a while), we came up with an axiom: Good Leadership is Good Facilitation and Good Facilitation is Good Leadership.

While this concept has a lot of subtle nuances there were a couple of common characteristics that should be core to facilitators and...

Mason Smith

In last Friday’s Transcribe, we discussed how a session is like a good book, you are engaged from start to finish, you experience each twist and turn side by side with the main characters, and it leaves you thinking in ways you had not considered before.

We recently supported a session for one of our clients that focused on facilitating innovative thinking. We visited several different organizations that live and breathe innovation and discussed the...

Evan Wondolowski

Can we foster mass collaboration for millions of people?

Years ago it would have been hard to even conceive of the possibility of millions of people communicating with each other. Today, it’s another story. Now, we can connect instantly to people and ideas from across the world. Staying connected has never been easier.

Digital collaboration is well under way. Open-source products are growing more and more each day. Thousands of people are working...

Mason Smith

Clarity is an essential and often overlooked ingredient of effective collaboration. While brainstorming ideas for our Transcribe conversation, the group became very interested in investigating the effect of Business Speak (BS) or buzz words on collaboration.

Buzz words tend to be considered the slop of language, obfuscating meaning and hindering progress. Yet, they can also promote clarity. Buzz words begin as short hand, effectively communicating...