In our time of change, complexity and volatility, a growth in our “complexity of mind” – our inner complexity – is demanded of us if we are to be adequate to today’s key tasks.
Adult Development research findings can help us see how much complexity of mind we currently have, and how we might enable it to grow.
Jennifer Garvey Berger – an internationally respected expert in Adult Development, leadership and organisational transformation – will explain why this inner change is so crucial, and how we can make it happen, in our health organisations and elsewhere.
“The complex world will not get more simple to make us more comfortable. Now is our chance to grow as big as the world requires us to be“, she writes.
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Jennifer will look at the role played by leadership development, action learning, coaching, feedback, changes to HR processes and other methods for enabling inner growth. How must we reconceptualise job roles, responsibilities and recruitment in order to recruit (or retain) the ‘post-conventional’ professionals who may have the solutions to today’s seemingly intractable problems? (But often find the constraints of conventional bureaucratic organisations the wrong context to work in – and leave).
The leadership usually rewarded in today’s organisations “will never be complex enough to make real traction in a world filled with ambiguity and uncertainty“, Jennifer writes.
Jennifer will also look at the possibility of building strong and supportive growth cultures within health organisations. Though still rare, a few organisations – ‘Deliberately Developmental Organisations’ – are already successfully pioneering this new organisational form, where learning and the vulnerability of ‘not knowing’ – in a highly supportive community – is used as an engine of learning and improvement, not something to hide.
“We find that most of the organisations we spend time in talk about learning but reward perfection and certainty, which pulls in exactly the opposite direction“, she wrote in her book ‘Simple Habits for Complex Times‘ (Stanford Business Books, 2015).
This admits our interior life into the realms of what can be improved, acted on and managed – stepping beyond the external improvement methods of PDSA cycles, Lean transformations etc.
*Before the Zoom meeting: please read this 7-page overview of ‘Key Concepts in Adult Development‘ by Jennifer. It will help you get the most out of the call.
This is Zoom call is organised by the Q group ‘Closing the Gap: developing improver for a complex world‘. Please join to hear about future Zooms etc – open to all.
Jennifer has worked with senior leaders in the private, non-profit, and government sectors around the world (eg Google, KPMG, Lion, Microsoft, Wikimedia, and the New Zealand Department of Conservation).
She blends deep theoretical knowledge with a driving quest for practical ways to make leaders’ lives better.
Jennifer has a masters and a doctorate from Harvard University. Eschewing work/life balance for a life that feels like fun across the board, Jennifer loves to write, to walk her dog through the New Zealand bush, to scuba dive, to travel with her husband and their nearly-adult children, and figure out how to make whole organisations work better. She is currently living in London.
Jennifer is also the author of ‘Changing on the Job: Developing Leaders for a Complex World‘ (Stanford Business Books, 2013).