Ten tips for facilitating emergent processes

I just discovered a nice medium article/blog entry from Sonja Blignaut on working towards emergent solutions for wicked situations. I just summarise, but details are in the article.

Facilitating emergent group processes requires a different kind of facilitation. When you’re not working towards a predetermined outcome, following a pre-designed agenda, the following principles are helpful to keep in mind:

1. Be congruent and trust the process
2. Create enabling constraints by setting and maintaining clear boundaries
3. Keep instructions ambiguous
4. Keep up the pace
5. Work with the “edges”
6. Play with similarities, constrasts & difference
7. Avoid premature convergence
8. Treat the group like adults
9. Be present and work with what’s in the room.
10. Have a buddy

One more interesting note from another medium article Sonja worte :

Money and technology are hugely valuable resources: they are certainly necessary but they are not sufficient.
Simply throwing more money and/or more advanced technology at a problem will not make it go away. We need to fundamentally change our thinking paradigm and approach things in context-appropriate ways, otherwise we will never move the needle on these so-called wicked problems.

(from: Why we suck at “solving wicked problems” and 6 ways to become better)

Navigate Complexity: Three Habits of Mind is a third article worthwhile referring.

I like the alignment with the ideas I posted in “it all comes together in a perfect storm keep it simple“.

Habits of mind to thrive in complexity

  • Openness
  • Situational Awareness
  • A healthy respect for the “restraint/action paradox” (act under tension).

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