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May 19, 2005 Issue 62
hard to know when to respond to the seductiveness
of the world and when to respond to its challenge.
If the world were merely seductive, that would
be easy. If it were merely challenging, that
would be no problem. But I arise in the morning
torn between the desire to improve the world
and a desire to enjoy the world. This makes
it hard to plan the day."
E. B. White
is the price that life exacts for granting peace."
New Video Now
Available! One on One with Dennis Meadows:
OFFER! Order the video through July 31 and save
happens when we outgrow the planet?"
More than 30 years ago, Dennis Meadows began
research on the consequences of growth on a
finite planet. Backed by an understanding of
complex systems, sophisticated computer modeling,
and timely data, he and his team examined a
range of possible scenarios of the future.
projections were sobering: given the world's
ever-increasing appetites, the same pattern
of growth that had brought a century of progress
could eventually lead to a period of dramatic
Now, already stressed by resource demands 20
percent beyond what it can sustainably support,
the planet is approaching a dangerous, pivotal
period. Food production, environmental quality,
climate stability, and availability of key
may soon encounter "tipping points," when they
will race downward at alarming rates.
Meadows contends that only changes in attitudes
about population and consumption are likely
to divert us from a painful growth and collapse
scenario and start us on a path of sustainable
In this eye-opening vision of possible futures,
Meadows spells out the dangers, examines the
ways of thinking that have led to this critical
point, and offers direction to those who are
ready to become part of the solution.
The video offers a powerful way for businesses
to alert their workforces to both the potentially
dramatic changes ahead in the business environment
and the need for long range planning informed
by a greater understanding of complex systems.
The clear explanations of the dynamics of growth
and sustainable development make the video a
unique resource for classrooms and for non-profit
organizations with a focus on sustainability.
Order #VONE003D, DVD Video (NTSC),
47 minutes, color, $125.00 (regularly $175.00)
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Ingredients of a "Leaderful" Organization: An Interview with Mac Tristan
Keynote and Forum Speakers
Hot off the Press! Brochure for the 2005 Pegasus Conference
Register by July 1 to Save $500
The Ingredients of a "Leaderful" Organization: An Interview
with Mac Tristan
by Kali Saposnick
Tristan is the assistant chief of police for the Carrollton,
Texas, Police Department. Using the tools of problem-oriented policing
and servant-leadership, he has created an interdependent team of
line-level patrol officers within his bureau. In a short period,
this group has boosted police morale, reduced crime, and improved
communication with citizens. Mac will be speaking with Ann McGee-Cooper,
cofounder of Ann McGee-Cooper and Associates, a creative problem-solving
consulting team, at the 2005 Pegasus Conference, "Embracing Interdependence:
Effective and Responsible Action in Our Organizations and the World"
more). The tools he will share can apply to and help
any organization become more effective, efficient, and interdependent.
In the following interview, he gives some insights into creating
a "leaderful" organization.
Imagine police officers who confidently deviate from official procedure
without clearing their actions with their supervisor first. Not
only do they successfully employ a new method for catching car thieves
and burglars, but they convince their peers in the department to
do so, too. While this situation may not sound radical to people
in the private sector, for most traditional police departments,
it is. Yet, today, this is how things often get done at the Carrollton,
Texas, Police Department.
The seed for this transformation was planted more than a decade
ago, when Carrollton's assistant police chief, Mac Tristan, was
introduced to problem-oriented policing (POP) and servant-leadership.
POP is a method for proactively solving problems in a law enforcement
environment; it shares many characteristics with servant-leadership,
a model for engaging the knowledge and wisdom of employees from
throughout an organization.
In traditional command-and-control police departments, officers
typically react to what their supervisors tell them to do, for example,
write tickets and take reports. According to Mac, "This style doesn't
work anymore, particularly when our department requires an associates'
degree to even walk through the door, 85 percent of our employees
have bachelor's degrees, and some have master's degrees. We hire
the best and brightest and then treat them like robots. I wanted
to create a different kind of environment, one that encourages the
creative input from every member of the team."
Breaking Down Silos
Part of Mac's challenge has been addressing the traditional
silo mentality of police work. Each of the three bureaus in his
agencyOperations (patrol), Management Services (internal affairs
and administration), and Investigative Services (detectives)is
headed by an assistant chief; in the past, they rarely collaborated.
Instead, to address problems, officers had to escalate them up the
chain of command within their own bureau and wait for a response,
sometimes months, before they could take action. What Mac did was
to empower his officers to creatively solve problems, especially
stubborn cases that none of the bureaus could closeand to
do so in tandem with their peers from other bureaus and city departments,
rather than waiting for input from their superiors.
reading the complete interview
about the 2005 Pegasus Conference
resources on Servant-Leadership
15th Annual Pegasus Conference
Embracing Interdependence: Effective and Responsible Action
in Our Organizations and the World
San Francisco, California, November 1416, 2005
Announcing Keynote Speakers
Pegasus is pleased to announce this year's keynote speakers.
Take this fabulous opportunity to learn from these innovative thinkers
and experience their expertise first-hand!
senior vice president, Ford Motor Company, and chief information
officer, Marv is leading Ford's effort to develop the capability
to rapidly sense and respond to marketplace changes.
Mary Catherine Bateson
A writer, educator, and cultural anthropologist,
Mary Catherine is engaged in exploring changing patterns of communication
among the generations and the implications for how we build the
Daniel H. Kim
A renowned thinker, author, and speaker in the fields
of systems thinking and organizational learning, Daniel is committed
to helping problem-solving (reactive) organizations transform into
problem-dissolving (generative) organizations.
The author of the widely acclaimed book, The Fifth
Discipline, and founding chair of the Society for Organizational
Learning, Peter has played a pivotal role in shaping the organizational
Announcing Forum Speakers:
A co-creator of the World Café, a process for creating
living networks of conversation around questions that matter, Juanita
seeks ways to transcend "us vs. them" thinking.
As director of partnership development for the Society
for Organizational Learning, Jeff has practical knowledge of how
organizations can weave learning into their strategy and day-to-day
Ann, the founding partner of Ann McGee-Cooper & Associates,
has partnered with clients such as Southwest Airlines and TDIndustries
to research and apply servant leadership in the workplace.
As the assistant chief of police for the Carrollton,
Texas, Police Department, Mac has been instrumental in revitalizing
a troubled organization while building leadership capability from
within the ranks.
Formerly with Intel, Jon is a consultant in the areas
of organization development, communication, and learning, with a
special emphasis on applied learning.
Other presenters to be announced. Learn
more about the conference.
off the Press! Brochure for the 2005 Pegasus Conference
a copy of the brochure for the 2005 Pegasus Conference.
Find out about the exciting sessions and dynamic presenters, along
with the many learning opportunities designed to build your skills
and give you the inspiration to face the challenges that lie ahead.
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by Verna Allee
Why do we think we can "manage" anything as poorly understood as
knowledge? Knowledge is constantly changing around products, services,
processes, technology, roles, and relationships. No sooner do we
think we have identified a pattern of knowledge than a new one appears.
How, then, do we organize to support knowledge? Systems thinking
can provide a useful lens. Through systems thinking, we better understand
the qualities of knowledge, such as:
Knowledge is messy. It cannot be isolated. Every aspect
of it is connected to everything else.
Knowledge is self-organizing. It is created, sustained,
killed, and renewed daily as purposes and values change.
Knowledge seeks community. People share knowledge
all over the globe through powerful communities such as the Internet.
Knowledge is slippery. Trying to codify knowledge
in documents, patents, intellectual property, libraries, and databases
usually stifles creativity and new knowledge.
Knowledge experiments. There is no final solution
in knowledge management because patterns of knowledge are always
changing. The best answer moves things along while keeping options
open and trying different approaches.
Knowledge does not grow forever. Like nature, something
eventually dies or is lost. Relinquishing old ways of thinking contributes
to knowledge's vitality and evolution.
Knowledge is a social phenomenon. People together
make knowledge happen. Managers cannot manage knowledge itself,
but they can create processes for acquiring, creating, sharing,
and applying it.
The most successful strategy to advance knowledge is first to trust
and respect its natural qualities. In this way we can develop less
manipulative, more organic ways to work with it.
the complete article on which this summary is based, or see LEVERAGE,
No. 7 (April 13, 1998)
to The Systems Thinker® Newsletter
resources on Knowledge Management
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